Muslin is one of the earliest cotton cloths. It originated in Bangladesh, and there is written record of its existence all the way back to the 13th century.
Original muslin was not bleached or finished and had a rough, unrefined texture. Muslin features a loose, plain weave, which is considered one of the simplest and most popular weaves.
Muslin can be used for clothing, upholstery, curtains and sewing patterns. It can also be used as the backing or lining for quilts.
Muslin is (and was from its existence) used for making test garments before more expensive fabric is used. This is why a test garment made of synthetic fabric might still be referred to as “a muslin”.
Downsides to muslin:
Not as durable as other weaves, such as twill
Tends to shrink
Benefits of muslin:
Easy to sew
Lightweight and breathable
Accepts dyes well
Patterns and ideas for how to use muslin:
Make a muslin! If you are trying out a pattern you haven’t used before, try sewing it with some inexpensive muslin first. This could help you avoid costly mistakes if you are planning to use a higher priced material.
Quick and easy reusable tea bag (for those who still drink loose leaf tea)
Muslin rabbit toy you can either dress up in clothes or have your kids decorate with fabric markers.
Do you like sewing with muslin? Have you used it to make a test garment before? How did it work?