Join Donna as she discusses the qualities of various corduroy fabrics and shares how the type in her collection could be used in projects for dolls.
The unique feature of corduroy is the rows of pile. Corduroy fabric is woven in a special way which creates rows of “floating” threads which are then cut by a special machine process. These cut threads are what create the rows of pile and the tiny little fluffy parts that get everywhere.
The rows of pile are called wales. And the width of the wale is the main thing that is used to describe the type of corduroy. The number, whether it’s 8 wale or 21 wale, is the number of wales or these vertical stripes, per INCH. If it’s an 8 wale corduroy, it will have 8 stripes of the pile within one inch. So the higher the number, the finer the lines. The lower the number, the wider the lines. According to the industry, standard corduroy fabric has 11 wales per inch, but if a piece of corduroy has anywhere between 8 to 13 wales it is usually still considered to be standard corduroy.
The 8 wale corduroy is a thicker fabric than the 16 wale, and the 16 is thicker than the 21 wale. So the wider wale ones are going to have more bulk at any seamlines and the fine wale fabrics are going to be much softer and easier to handle.
The Pixie Pack corduroy is super soft and super tiny and just perfect for doll clothes. You could use this for most any type of garment for dolls that you might see made in corduroy for humans. https://www.pixiefaire.com/collections/pixie-packs-fabric-kits
This 16 wale weight would be okay for some doll clothing but it is a bit stiffer, so would probably be best for things you might use a denim for, like pants or A line skirts. Maybe a jacket or accessories such as tote bags or luggage.
The wide wale corduroy is probably not something you want to use for doll clothing, but it might work well for something like the Snuggle and Store Tote Bag from Liberty Jane or the Modern Sofa by QT Pi Pattern Company.
Donna uses her Art Deco Bags pattern as a base for some cute corduroy bags and her upcoming Prima Bells pattern for some groovy pants.
If you like to visit thrift shops, keep an eye out for clothing made from fun corduroy fabric that can be upcycled into items for your doll.