Secrets of Silk

You are purchasing a truly special hand-made keepsake that speaks of quiet luxury and romance.  Below are some notes and guidance to help you choose the perfect ribbons for your forever moments.

I dye in small batches with natural plant materials and minerals, and although recipes are followed, tints and shades can rarely be perfectly replicated between batches. Natural dyeing is a slow craft in this modern hectic world. Mother nature can’t be rushed, and she can be fickle. Often there may be colour shifts or small markings on the fabric as part of the process and any imperfections are part of the magic that happens when plant materials are used to create living colour. Perfectly imperfect. As a self-confessed control freak this was a HUGE learning curve for me, but now I have come to relax and enjoy every gift my dye pots offer up.


 

Types of silk

 Habatoi

This ribbon is hand-torn, very light and semi-translucent with a lovely shimmer. It has delicately frayed edges so is prone to loose threads. It is ideal for tying around invitation suites, favours, napkins or cutlery and is the perfect addition for fine-art style wedding bouquets.  For Boho Brides, Habatoi ribbon can be made wet and scrunched then left to dry natural for a crinkled effect. These ribbons drape beautifully but they require a breeze or movement to ensure the fluttering effect in photographs.

Silk Crepe Ribbon

Crepe Silk has a beautiful drape and is slightly heavier than Habatoi/Classic silk. It has a very matte subtle crinkled or granular texture. Crepe is also more opaque than Habatoi ribbon.

Silk Satin

This gorgeous ribbon is dual textured. It has a matte surface on one side and the silky sheen associated with 100% silk on the other. It is hand-torn so has raw edges and visibly frayed edges which can be prone to loose threads.  Silk satin is a mid-weight ribbon. The added body of this ribbon makes beautiful soft bows and it will dance in any breeze.

Silk Velvet

Silk velvet ribbon is soft and very luxurious, with a single side of velvet pile and a smooth underside of silk. It is hand-torn, so the raw edges are prone to loose threads. It is normal for a little of the fluffy fibres of the velvet to shed. It is the heaviest weight of all the ribbons I make and has an especially fluid drape. In paler shades Silk Velvet ribbon is an elegant and glamorous choice for fine art wedding bouquets. Velvet’s tactile qualities are also perfect for bohemian Brides and the rich jewelled tone colours are ideal for winter weddings.

Silk Chiffon

This ribbon has a particularly soft delicate hand and is hand-torn so it has frayed edges.  These raw edges are prone to loose threads easily snipped off or drawn from the silk. It’s texture is matte and chiffon is very sheer. Wider widths make gorgeous fluid bows. For Boho Brides Silk Chiffon ribbon can be made wet and scrunched then left to dry natural for a crinkled effect. 

Bias Cut

This ribbon is cut at a 45-degree angle for natural movement and the pieces are then sewn together with silk thread resulting in a seam every 2-3 metres of ribbon which has some stretch. It drapes effortlessly and is not frayed like hand torn ribbon due to it's cleaner cut edge, however, it can be unravelled by running your fingers along each edge if desired.  The natural movement and slight stretch of bias-cut ribbon is ideal for wrapping around a tier of your wedding cake.

  

Width & Lengths

This is where personal preference comes into play. I offer several widths of ribbon  Bouquet widths of between 6 and 10cm are available in dual textured silk satin and crinkle silk. Wider widths of other ribbons can be custom ordered. Most of my ribbons are 1.8m or 3m lengths unless custom ordered.

When choosing ribbons keep the scale of your blooms in mind. The larger the bouquet, the wider the ribbon can be.  If you want very long trailing tails then a wider ribbon is often the best choice. Brides often choose narrower widths for Maids flowers and the wider widths for their own Bouquets.

The amount of ribbon you decide upon depends on the style you would like to create - how many ribbon tails and the length of the tails you prefer on your bouquet.

For example a 1.8 length of ribbon would create two tails less than 90cm in length (remembering that the florist would have to wrap the stems with a few cm of ribbon at the centre) or 4 tails each approx 35cm in length.

For Brides 2 or 3 x 1.8m lengths or a 3m length will give your florist enough scope to create a romantic trailing look. For bridesmaids 1 to 3 standard a 1.8m length is usually ample.

For stationery I recommend 30-40 cm per invitation suite for single wraps. For place cards approx 20cm lengths look lovely. However check with your calligrapher or stationer for the lengths they would prefer and then multiply by this length by the number of invitations or stationery suites you will be ordering.

If you are thinking of adorning your cake with silk ribbon, a standard 1.8m length is generally ample, however please speak to your Cake artist as they may advise extra taking into account any bows or tails in their design. Silk Satin or Bias Cut Ribbon looks divine on cakes! 

Reuse and recycle

Reuse your bouquet ribbons in your hair, wrap cutlery for your first anniversary dinner or as beautiful touch to your significant others gift, as you celebrate your very first Christmas together as a Married couple. Or simply wrap your ribbon in acid free tissue and store in a darkened drawer or glory box for future generations.