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Honour the Child

Blog Archive

BTRT Patterns (on Etsy)

Tuesday, 4 October 2011
Last week, I began a series of informational posts to help parents and family shop for playsilks for the little ones in their lives. You can find the opening post HERE.

This week, we'll take a look at quality.

First time playsilk shoppers are often uncertain of what to look for in a playsilk gift.
When browsing through playsilk available, keep in mind that not all silk is created equally and that you will rarely be able to make ‘apples to apples’ comparisons between sellers due to variations in size, technique and quality.

Since you are shopping online, and you are not able to touch the silk to feel its weight or drape, you must rely on photographs and descriptions of the items.

Quality photographs speak for themselves.
Silk is photographed best in natural light, otherwise it throws back a misleading amount of shine.
Quality silk will not shine like satin (unless it is Silk Satin...!).

Silk is graded by its momme (mm) (‘mummy’)~ a Japanese unit of measurement which determines the weight of the silk

Momme weight is measured by placing a piece of silk 100 yards long (45" wide) on the scale.
If the piece weighs 8 pounds, it is 8 momme (mm) silk.

The higher the momme, the more silk fiber was used in weaving the fabric (think of the thread count in cotton sheets)~ and the higher the price!
Higher momme silk is thicker and denser (and heavier, of course).
Silk Chiffon is 6-8mm, while a luxury silk, like charmeuse, weighs in at 18-20 momme.
Chiffon Silk dyed by BTRT
Charmeuse Silk dyed by BTRT

Quality playsilk silk should weigh between 8-12 mm in order to provide durability over time.
For more on the strength (and care) of silk, read HERE.

Lighter pieces tend to run and are very sheer and may feel ‘cheap’. 
Heavier weight is not always better as it lacks the drifting flow that kids love.
Look for the momme in the description of silk before you buy.
 When you purchase playsilks, you are making an investment in tools for your child's work of play.
Good tools are important!
So look for quality silk, well dyed.... we'll discuss dyeing next time! ♥♥

Introductory Post: Is it Silk?
Next Post: To Dye For


Anonymous said...

Alright--I probably didn't read everything, but how much is this silk? It's so beautiful!

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