Sewing tips you should consider before starting any projects.
- Universal needles work well on most woven and knit fabrics.
- Use ball point needles for heavy knits, double knits and interlocks to prevent runs and snags.
- Stretch needles work best on highly elastic knits Lycra and synthetic non-woven knits such as Ultrasuede.
- Top stitching needles are used for heavy, decorative threads
- Wedgepoint needles are for leather and vinyls.
- Change the needle before starting new large projects and avoid using damaged needles that may harm your machine or fabric.
- Use high quality needles that match your fabric or project.
- Use high quality threads that match your fabric or project.
- Hand quilting thread is used for hand sewing.
- Rayon thread is not a good choice for fabric that will be washed often or machine dried.
- Polyester thread is universal. It can be machine washed, dried or dry cleaned is colorfast, and has a slight stretch. It is the most versatile of threads.
- To protect your machine plug it into a power surge protector.
- Keep your machine well maintained and lint free.
- Never sew over pins since this will damage the needle or machine throat plate.
Fabrics and Garments:
- Follow the pattern envelope for recommended fabric types and widths for your fabric.
- When working with fabric that no longer has salvage pull a thread from each direction to determine the grain line. If the tread breaks and snaps the tread is from the lengthwise grain line. If the tread frays or shreds and then breaks, it is from the crosswise grain line.
- When buying fabric with nap (corduroy for example), one-way design or a plaid, you will need to buy extra fabric to be able to correctly lay out the pattern and match pieces. Follow the nap/one-way design layout in the pattern.
- When both sides of a knit fabric look a like mark with tailors chalk or masking tape the side you determine is the wrong side.
- Some fabrics that fray heavily (Chenile for example) should not be pre-washed; the resulting lint and threads can damage your machine. Wash when construction is complete and seam edges are secured with an overlock stitch.
- When selecting a fusible web for a garment or costume, check the label to be sure you can sew through it.
Sewing Projects for your Home:
- Exact measurements are important with vinyl because there is no ease is fabric.
- To sew on vinyl, set machine stitch to almost basting length. To many stitches will weaken vinyl.
- To sew vinyl, use Teflon foot or rolling foot to prevent sticking.
- The first time you make a welted cushion pillow, use a ¼” diameter cord because it is easier to work with.
- Always measure your window and furniture carefully and bring the measurements with you for cutting and selecting fabric.
- When you upholster furniture, carefully remove old covering and use them to make a pattern out of Pattern Ease, interfacing or paper.
Courtesy Jo-Ann Stores Inc.