Planning on sewing with Scuba fabric, or even asking what is scuba?.
I love trying out new fabrics and especially fabrics that have different characteristics and qualities.
So, when I chose this pretty gingham Scuba from Minerva I was so looking forward to working with it.
Never having sewn with it before I wasn’t sure what to expect. I only knew that it was gingham and pink which in my book is a win-win. I have just finished another pink make, my Ida blouse beauty here!
So What Is Scuba?
Well, it is similar in weight to Ponte Roma jersey fabric which you can get from Minerva and is perfect for making garments that need structure.
Scuba fabric was originally designed for wetsuits and scuba diving outfits. But thankfully it’s a popular dressmaking fabric now too!
So, when I ordered it I was thinking it may be a little bit spongy and fairly stiff and really was not sure what to expect.
Well, I was so wrong there. What an unusual fabric it is. It’s like something I’ve never worked with before. I was pleasantly surprised, to say the least. It’s got a lovely smooth, flexible and soft feel to it. It is quite thick with a lot of structure too.
Tilly and the Buttons ‘Coco’ Dress
I am sure that my Coco dress would stand up on its own! It is also so comfortable to wear and doesn’t crease or lose its shape. It also launders really well and needs very little ironing!
I probably wouldn’t use it to make a T-shirt as it is a little too structured for that but definitely great for sweatshirt dresses, etc.
What is scuba fabric best for?
Scuba fabric is a brilliant stretch jersey fabric that is ideal for making figure-hugging dresses, tops, and skirts. Scuba fabric is made from polyester and high-stretch spandex. It’s a type of double-knit, with a smooth but fairly thick texture. It is springy so is perfect for shaping skirts and for garments that require quite a lot of structure.
It’s a great stable fabric
It has some stretch to it like a jersey fabric but also the stability you get with woven fabrics. It’s also brilliant to sew with. When it came to cutting the pattern out, my rotary cutter just slid through like cutting through butter. There was no slip-sliding either on my cutting table which you can find with some fabrics. My sewing machine loved working with this fabric and so did my overlocker.
I chose the Coco dress for two reasons. One it recommended a stable stretch fabric and two I had never made the Coco dress before. Oh, and three, I love the cowl neck on this pattern!
Is scuba fabric thick?
It is quite a dense fabric and because of its structure you need to set your iron to a cooler setting, otherwise, it may melt under the iron if it’s too hot. The fabric is quite dense and thick, so be sure to give extra attention to pressing seams, etc and it will give you good results.
Is scuba hard to sew?
Sewing with scuba fabric is not hard to sew with, in fact, I really enjoyed the process. You simply need to be aware of its structure and how it handles, and always do some test sewing on scraps of fabric beforehand. You may also need to change your sewing machine needle but a bit of reading up on how best to do it helps. I would suggest choosing sewing patterns that are recommended for double knit or scuba fabrics and that are also suitable for beginners. Once you have sewn a simple garment you will feel much more confident to tackle a more complex piece. That’s also why I chose to make my dress using the beginner-friendly Coco Pattern by Tilly and The Buttons!
What Is Another Word For Scuba Fabric?
The term scuba is often used interchangeably with the term Neoprene.
Neoprene is a similar-feeling fabric, but it has a slight difference. A thin piece of foam is then sandwiched between two thin layers of knit to create neoprene fabric. While the fabrics behave quite similarly, neoprene fabric can be less comfortable to wear because that thin piece of foam can get very warm for the wearer. That’s why it is perfect for scuba diving and surfing and other water-based activities.
Super Easy Sewing Pattern
It’s a super easy sewing pattern and I made it in no time at all. It’s a great starter pattern too if you are new to dressmaking. There is nothing too daunting or technical and the instructions are super easy.
There are a few options you can choose from with the sleeves and neckline. I chose the full-length sleeves with the added cuffs and the cowl neckline. I do love a garment with neck detailing especially a cowl or high neck.
Watch my vlog
I have uploaded a vlog on this great sewing pattern using scuba fabric. You can see in more detail what I did with the dress and the options I chose. Come and join me on my channel and subscribe if you are not a subscriber already.
I will definitely be making this pattern again and probably in another scuba fabric from Minerva. They have so many to choose from but I fancy a floral next time. It’s just a great heavyweight stretch fabric that just has a great drape. It’s not only got stability but it’s just a dream to work with.
The only thing missing on this pattern, in my opinion, is pockets, so I will add some on my next make. I am not sure whether they will be patch pockets stitched on the front or inseam pockets. That is the beauty of dressmaking as you can adapt sewing patterns to suit you.
I will definitely be sewing with scuba fabric again! It was a great sewing experience and the choice is endless. Florals, checks, or solids that’s the hardest part of choosing which one!
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Thanks for joining me today, and happy sewing with scuba fabric!