Icarex is a 1/2 oz/yd fabric that makes for very light kite sails. It’s not the easiest stuff to work with, however. Here are a few things I discovered about Icarex:

  • It’s very sensitive to the tension setting on the sewing machine. Testing on scraps and adjusting is a must.
  • Needle holes do not self-seal, so once you’ve punched a hole, it’s there. Use a small diameter needle, and make as few mistakes as possible.
  • It handles more like paper than cloth. It’s fairly stiff, so it’s hard to keep lined up and flat under the needle while bundling up the excess kite sail that isn’t getting stiched. Again, practice helps a lot.
  • It’s slippery and does not take to adhesives well. You can use a little bit of water and get two parts to stay together nicely long enough to sew, but don’t put too much strain on them. Spray adhesive tends to leave marks. Pins leave the holes. Glue doesn’t really stick. Melting methods are more reliable.
  • I did have some success ironing Icarex, using a very low setting on the iron and keeping the iron moving. Be very careful.

My best advice for Icarex is practice, practice, practice. Even though it’s expensive, buy a little extra and get used to it.