Japanese Fabrics – Double Gauze

In line with Girls’ Dresses month, I will be talking about some fabrics used for making girls’ dresses. Have you noticed that in most of the Japanese sewing/pattern books for girls, they tend to use rather muted colors, plain solid color fabrics or simple prints like geometrics and florals. When I first started buying fabrics, I used to get attracted to these cute characters and girly features like strawberries and ribbon bows. But these are hardly seen in books. Character and cute prints are usually used in magazines like Cucito where the projects are used to showcase new fabrics for fabric stores.

One commonly seen type of fabric in many of the books and patterns, is the double gauze fabric. I have never seen this fabric in Singapore other than the shops that import Japanese fabric, and even then the selection is very very limited. In Japan this fabric is very common and it comes in all kinds of prints and colors.

Japanese word of the day – ダブル(da-bu-ru) ガーゼ (ga-ze). Directly translated from the word “double gauze”, it is sometimes labelled as W-ガーゼ on fabric labels, I guess “W” is a short cut way of saying ダブル. :) Double gauze is exactly what it is, two layers of gauze. Gauze alone is too sheer and too thin to have considerable “body”, but two layers is just right, and oh so soft! The draping of the fabric is a little like linen, where it has some “body” but while linen takes many washes to soften up, double gauze is already soft. It does have a little bit of a crinkly look after washing though, you can iron it but it is not easy to get all the crinkles out.

Here are some double gauze fabrics I found on the internet. Click on the images to see the source and other color options.

There are many options for solid color double gauze, this particular example is supposedly very soft to touch, and on the website there is a detailed explanation of the process that makes it so soft.

Very versatile checks and dots. In such wonderfully muted shades.

Very simple floral print which will look so sweet on a girl’s dress!

These are called “Liberty” style double gauze. I don’t think Liberty has double gauze fabric right? So these are just florals done in Liberty style :) I used to shy away from using florals like these for little girls’ clothings, but I have seen so many positive examples being done in the pattern books, that I might try one day.

Some interesting ones. These are double gauze but with a denim color. I bought something similar and made a little trench coat out of it. The fabric was soft but surprisingly held the shape well.

From top left : Cotton linen double gauze (15% linen, 85% cotton), Scallop edge double gauze fabric. Bottom picture : Double sided double gauze!

And you know what? There is still triple gauze, and even 5 or 6 layered gauze! I just saw one 6 layered one named 雲のガーゼ which means gauze of clouds! But it’s 1500 yen for 50cm, so I guess I won’t be experimenting or making clothes with that anytime soon :)

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One Response

  1. Isa says:

    Very happy to stumble on this site. I always admire the Japanese sewing patterns but of course I couldn’t understand any of it. Now I can try some projects pretty soon…thanks!

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