Something Special For Lent and Good Friday: Black Vestment Fabrics
At Ecclesiastical Sewing, we specialize in offering a wide range of Liturgical Fabrics ranging from Brocades to Tapestries. Most of our fabrics are patterns and designs that have been around for many years. Within our line of fabrics, there is an assortment of price ranges from moderately priced to more expensive fabrics.
In talking with our clients either by email or in person at shows, or at classes, and events, we have come to learn that occasionally there is a need for more moderately priced fabrics. This winter we were able to make a special purchase with some of our vendors and we are pleased to offer a special limited collection of liturgical fabrics.*
The Lenten Season is a time of year when black vestments are worn. The use of black will depend on which rites a church follows, but it is not uncommon to use black for Ash Wednesday as well as for Good Friday. This black brocade with a circle and cross motif has a nice weight and hand. It would work great if black hangings such as plain black banners were needed to drape in a church to create a somber mood for Good Friday. The fabric could also be used for any variety of church vestments and hangings. Consider this religious fabric for making black vestments such as a chasuble or even a cope.
This is another of the black liturgical brocade fabrics available for this season of Lent. The black brocade fabric has an elongated cross design in an oval motif. This is another variation of a religious brocade that would work well as a banner or as altar hangings for Good Friday. The appeal of these fabrics is the nice hand and hang to both of these solid black brocades. The fabrics drape well and fall in soft folds. Now, these are fabrics at an introductory price and quality, so they do not have the heavier dense packing of yarns in the weft. That translates into the fact that the fabrics are suitable for use with machine embroidery, but it is best to select designs that DO NOT have densely packed stitches. And that should be no problem because there would be minimal designs used for Good Friday. So, let the beauty of either of the above cross motifs shine forth.
The final black fabric in this special purchase collection combines gold threads with the black fabric base.
The Black/Gold brocade is a compliment to the solid black liturgical fabric above. This variation has a slightly different hand due to the high use of the metallic threads. This would make great orphrey accents on a frontal or chasuble. It would also make a stunning vestment when combined with solid black orphrey bands.
Now you may be asking what makes these fabrics different from the fabrics in our regular line. I am not the expert, but this may help. These fabrics are made with different yarns such as polyester and polyester/acetate blends. The yarns are not as lofty as the yarns used in our main line of religious brocades. But these fabrics are intended for special purposes: churches working with a limited budget that do not have the means for using the more expensive fabrics. These are also suitable for making trial garments before cutting the more expensive brocades. Some vestments are used only one time per year, and often church budgets don’t stretch far enough to justify having vestments for a single use. These introductory priced fabrics provide alternative options to meet the special needs of many churches.
And what about caring for these fabrics? As with any liturgical fabric, use care when pressing – use a press cloth and start with a low iron temp and increase the temp slowly and remember these are synthetic fabrics, so please do not use a hot iron! Dry cleaning is recommended, just like it is for our other fabrics.
The stock on hand is limited and once it is gone, it will not be replenished. And as always, we will continue to work with our vendors to provide special offers to help meet the needs for those interested in making their own church vestments, as well as those desiring to have custom-made vestments.
Soli Deo Gloria
*Custom vestment making is not available with this collection of fabrics. The fabric is sold as is for customers’ private use in making their own vestments.