Although silk fibres are extremely strong, silk fabric can deteriorate over time when it’s exposed to chemicals and bright light, because of its delicate nature. That means that sometimes, tears can happen when the fibres become weak and thin, eventually pulling away from each other.


If you find one of your silk garments does have a tear – don’t panic! There are a couple of ways you can repair silk so that you can continue to use it. How you repair your garment depends on the type of silk, and how big the tear is. To help you, we’ve put together a handy guide with a few ways you can get your silk garments repaired and looking like new.


Fusible Interfacing


Fusible interfacing is a technique used for repairing silk that involves adding fusible interfacing fabric to the underside of the garment to fuse to the torn fabric, rendering it fixed and almost invisible. You can buy fusible interfacing at most fabric and textile stores. Here is how you can use it to repair your silk:


You will need:

– Nail scissors
– Fusible interfacing
– Iron
– Ironing board
– Press cloth


Step one: First, you will need to measure your silk tear and cut a piece of fusible fabric that is roughly 1-inch longer and wider. This is so that the fusible fabric overlaps the tear. Use the thinnest fusible fabric you can find.

Tip – round the corners of the fusible fabric to stop the patch from peeling off.

Step two: Remove any jagged edges of the silk tear with the nail scissors.

Step three: Arrange the silk on your ironing board so that the wrong side is facing you. To do this, you may need to turn the garment inside out.

Step four: Place the edges of the tear as close together as you can without pinching the fabric.

Step five: Flatten the edges of the tear by turning your iron to the silk setting or a medium heat, placing a cloth over the tear and pressing the iron over it. Remove the iron and the cloth.

Step six: Now you’re ready for the fusible fabric. Place the fusible patch carefully over the tear, with the adhesive side touching the fabric.

Step seven: Spray your cloth lightly with water, place it on top of the patch and press the iron onto the cloth. The cloth in between stops the iron from scorching the silk.

Step eight: Hold the iron over the cloth for the length of time the fusible fabric manufacturer recommends. This ensures the fusible fabric has enough time to adhere to the silk, without it being held for too long.

Step nine: Remove the cloth and turn the garment right side out again.


Patching with Silk


Another way in which you can repair a tear or hole in a silk garment is by patching it with the same material. For this to work best, you should try and take your patch from the same garment you need to fix. Try using some unnecessary fabric from a pocket or the inside hem as it will ensure the patch matches the rest of the garment perfectly. This technique for repairing silk is most suitable for those who can already sew.


You will need:

– Nail scissors
– Silk patch
– Needle and silk thread


Step one: You will need to measure the tear and cut a patch that is 1-inch longer and wider than the tear.

Tip: three-sided patches work well to cover rips and tears.

Step two: Remove any jagged edges of the silk tear with the nail scissors.

Step three: Thread your needle with the silk thread in the closest colour match you can find and tie a knot at the end of the thread.

Step four: Place your patch over the silk hole or tear. Make sure the grain is running in the same direction. Pin the silk patch in place.

Step five: Depending on the patch and the size of the hole, you may need to sew a few running stitches down each side of the patch until it’s secure. You may also need to sew more than one row of stitches to keep it extra secure.

Step six: Once you have sewn your patch in place, you may want to lay a cloth over the patched area and iron it with your iron’s silk setting.


Discoloured Silk


If your silk garment has no holes or tears but simply has discoloured or stained, there are ways that you can fix this fairly easily. One way you can remove discoloured silk is with vinegar.


You will need:

– Container
– Gentle detergent
– Vinegar


Step one: Place your silk garment in a container and fill it with cold water. Get a gentle detergent or one specifically designed for use with silk such as Tenestar, and add it to the water.

Step two: Gently knead the fabric as you wash the silk. Rinse the silk garment in cool water until the detergent residue is removed. Make sure you only squeeze the fabric loosely and gently.

Step three: Refill your container with cold water and add 100ml of vinegar.

Step four: Place your silk in the water and vinegar, and rinse.

Step five: Once you’re finished, lay out a towel somewhere flat. Then, place the silk garment on the towel and gently roll out the moisture. This saves you from having to twist the silk to remove water.

Step six: Hang your silk garment to dry.


Learn how to remove different types of stains from silk in this blog.


Other Options


If you are unable to complete patchwork or fusible interfacing won’t work for you, you still have a few more options. You can take your garment to a professional tailor, who will be able to give you advice and carry out repairs for you. If the damage to your silk is large, you can help cover it by adding elements such as buttons or embroidery.


Taking Care of Silk


You can’t always prevent your silk from tearing or becoming discoloured, but there are certain practises you can follow to ensure you take as good care of your silk as possible. This involves things like storing your silk properly and following the care instructions carefully.


Some silk garments are easier to care for than others. Most sill garments from Jasmine Silk are machine washable and can be tumble dried on low heat. This means when you buy silk with us, maintenance is easy. Read our range of silk how-tos to find out more about how to care for your silk.