Until recently, if someone said “Soft Cell” to me I would mentally start singing Tainted Love. ( A few weeks ago I found out (to my shame), that theirs wasn’t the orignal version of this song, rather that was Gloria Jones back in 1964).
Now I will also think of Soft Shell (technically it’s name but it will forever be Soft Cell to me), a water-repellent fabric with a cosy fleece reverse that “protects against wind, cold and moisture, making it ideal for sports jackets and other clothing”. I’d never heard of it, but I fell in love with these dogs from myfabric thinking that they were fleece backed sweatshirt fabric and was heartbroken when they ran out of stock whilst I dithered. So when they came back in stock, I bought some, even though by then I realised it wasn’t sweatshirt fabric. I figured I could make it work, I mean, check out those sunglasses on that collie!
It feels slightly rubbery to the touch, has that slight swishy sound when the right sides rub together that you get with waterproof trousers and hasn’t really any stretch. The fleece back is fairly thin so the fabric is quite flexible and I think it would be perfect for an autumn/spring jacket (or maybe a dog coat, that would be cute). I wouldn’t say it was the easiest fabric to handle, but it wasn’t a pain either (it helped that I had just made this pattern up, so I had it all down). It doesn’t fray, I did manage to pin it (with long glass headed pins) and they didn’t seem to leave holes, and I sewed it ok with a stretch needle in my machine. I didn’t dare iron this 100% polyester fabric though, on either side, instead topstitching my seam allowances flat (particularly proud of that on the inseam, serious fabric manipulation was needed to get that through the machine).
Of course, I didn’t make a jacket with it. I made yet more trousers for the Boy, cos it’s getting colder around here, he’s been growing a ton, and his birthday is imminent. With turquoise ribbing to match the reverse and the fleece side inside the pockets for added snugglyness like last time. I’m slightly worried about how this fabric stand up to wear and tear, but there’s only one way to find out….