Diane has asked me to pass on to you for the blog, the Heaven I have found in sewing stretch hems.
After years of being frustrated with trying to sew hems etc on stretch garments with a twin needle, only to find that ‘tunnel’ between the stitching and other problems, I have found the perfect answer!
No, not a coverstitch machine (though the end result looks like it) – I had one of these but we never bonded and I sold it – but simple steps to follow:
- Turn the hem width to the wrong side of the garment.
- Working from the right side topstitch with a STRETCH twin needle. You can use woolly nylon in the bobbin for extra stretch if you like. LOOSEN the top thread tension.
Its that easy! My, what a difference! The best answers are always the easy ones and I wish I’d discovered stretch twin needles years ago.
The 3rd and final Sewing Challenge for this year was taken up by a surprising number of people and it was another high quality contest with a diverse range of garments, fabrics and techniques. The challenge was to make something from unusual or difficult to deal with fabrics and was judged by popular vote.
Taking out the most popular choice and the prize of a $50 gift voucher (a great big thanks to the Fabric Store in Auckland) was new member, Rosemary H for her stunningly gorgeous sequinned Chanel-style jacket.
Lined with Duchesse silk, which was lightly quilted to the sequinned fashion fabric in places to hold it together, this jacket was a triumph of technical difficulty and utilised high-end couture sewing techniques including hand stitching, a custom-made plaited braid and was fitted beautifully to Rosemary’s figure.
Rosemary’s comment that she hadn’t known to cut away the sequins from the seamline prior to sewing created a laugh all around as she “only” broke 4 machine needles in the process. An intrepid and fearless sewist indeed!
A close second in the popular vote was a garment from another new-ish member, Cecile. Her fun fur jerkin vest was very soft and smooth like a long-haired animal (although it was actually PETA safe thankfully). This was a fashionable look suitable to wear with jeans or even smart casual.
Congratulations to Rosemary and Cecile, but everyone was a winner on the day in this challenge.
Here are the some of the other contenders.
Rosemary M. did a fantastic job with a wool poodle cloth which had a high degree of stretch to tame. Originally styled for sweatshirts, Rosemary modified the pattern for fit and style. This is set to become a stylish and comfortable winter jacket with the navy contrast bands giving it all the features that she wanted. Another bonus was that the fabric was sourced from one of our group swap days!
Joanne created two tops for this challenge. This stunning green coloured velour type fabric had the perfect drape to catch the light and was sewn with a 3-step machine stitch suitable for knits.
Jill custom made a contrast fringed trim detail on this jacket adding flair and style to this Style Arc pattern.
Here’s a stunning family “Clan Ross” tartan pencil skirt by Mary P. Deceptively simple but it is always tricky matching those plaid lines but this was perfectly executed, and the result will be a wardrobe staple for years to come. Can’t beat quality, can you.
Another entry by Joanne was a drapey silk and lace blouse. Slippery lace can always be challenging but the perfectly colour-matched lace added wonderful texture to the garment. Joanne added some additional embroidery to the front neck opening to give it added stability.
Thanks to all who worked so hard to get their garments ready for the meeting and for showing them off for close inspection.
Coming soon will be our ***NEW*** Photo Gallery page for other images from our October 2015 group meeting including our regular “Show & Tell” session for garments finished during the past month.