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  • Writer's pictureJulie S.

No Sweat

This chasuble came into the sewing room because sweat had discolored the galloons around the neckline. It had turned them dark gray. Not good. We happened to have a couple of rolls of the same galloon, so we swapped out the strips that had tarnished. Then the questions was, what to do to keep this from happening again.

For most chasubles this sweat problem probably isn't an issue, but if a particular priest perspires more than others, or if Mass is routinely offered in hotter conditions, the perspiration can be profuse enough to cause trouble all the way through to the chasuble. A pleated chasuble protector is a very helpful way to deal with this challenge. This protector is advisable for any valuable chasubles as well. It is important to protect the edge of the neckline against any oils that might be picked up from the priest's head going through the neck hole.

I first saw this version of a chasuble protector years ago while scrolling through vestment stuff online. That chance encounter started a hunt for more information and additional images to no avail. When this chasuble came into our sewing room it just begged for a pleated protector. It is a neat look. The pleats lift a little against the amice and stole adding a nice bit of texture and interest to the neckline of the chasuble. But, like the pleating of altar cloths, there's a genius practicality to it. Pleats add at least a triple layer of protection, and even more if the edge is hemmed.

This protector is made from a long strip of linen leftover from cutting out purificators. It still had the selvedge edge on it which worked perfectly, keeping it very neat and flat. Half inch pleats are stitched down to make ironing an easy task after laundering. To pleat it efficiently, I marked the linen every 1.5" and creased fold lines with our handy "rotary linen creaser." Then it was flipped over and creased on the other side, 1/2" over from the front side creases, leaving a 1" space between each pair of creases. Three lines were stitched down the length to hold everything in place. I applied binding to the raw edge and basted the protector to the chasuble with large herringbone stitches. A quick snip down the center makes removal a snap.

So, now you have something to do with those leftover strips of linen.

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