SIGNUP - FREE Membership and 1 FREE Sewing Lesson
| FAQ | Login
 

Platinum Sponsor
Bernina
Bernina

Forum > Beginner's Forum > zig-zag stitches bunch up ( Moderated by EleanorSews)

Please LOGIN or Join PatternReview
Go to Page:
zig-zag stitches bunch up
Can you tell I learned on a straight stitch machine?
dove29

dove29  Friend of PR
Member since 4/28/07
Posts: 1252
Skill: Intermediate
Body Type:
Send Message

      



Date: 4/2/10 4:02 PM

A lot of the time when I sew with a zig-zag stitch, the fabric bunches up in it. Instead of looking like a real zig-zag, it looks straighter but the fabric gets bunched up in it. I see it a lot if I'm trying to finish a seam & especially if it's a light, soft fabric.
How do I keep this from happening? I suppose something is adjusted wrong...
Sewing on an old Kenmore that has about 12 stitches, & don't know where the manual is.
Thanks!

Patti B
starstarstarstar
Patti B  Friend of PR
Member since 9/29/02
Posts: 2503
Skill: Intermediate
Send Message

      



Date: 4/2/10 4:09 PM

It sounds like one of the tensions is messed up. I'm not much help because I haven't sewn on this machine but the stitches and the fabric should lie flat.

------
Patti

R-r-r-ripping my way to fitting success

Doris W. in TN
star
Doris W. in TN  Friend of PR
Tennessee USA
Member since 2/9/04
Posts: 8824
Skill: Intermediate
Send Message

      



In reply to dove29


Date: 4/2/10 4:32 PM

If you mean 'bunched up' as in gathered, I agree that it's a tension issue. If the zig-zag stitch width is pretty wide, and the part you are zig-zagging is bunching up under the thread, that is called 'tunneling' and you may need a stabilizer .

------
iPad's auto-correct is my enema.

Michelle T

Michelle T
British Columbia CANADA
Member since 8/24/02
Posts: 4597
Skill: Intermediate
Send Message

      



In reply to dove29


Date: 4/2/10 5:50 PM

Are you sewing on one or two layers of fabric?

Do you have a Overcast foot?

This foot helps to keep lightweight fabric flat when zig zagging.

------
Proud parent of a Dwight International School Honour Roll Student

sewsally
star
sewsally  Friend of PR
Washington USA
Member since 8/18/02
Posts: 1382
Skill: Intermediate
Send Message

      



Date: 4/2/10 7:17 PM

After checking the thread path and making sure the thread is not caught on the spool or anything else, I would try loosening the needle tension first.

Maybe a wash away or tear way stabilizer under the fabric.
Shorten stitch width and length since the fabric is fine.
And use a small sharp needle 60 or 75.


dove29

dove29  Friend of PR
Member since 4/28/07
Posts: 1252
Skill: Intermediate
Body Type:
Send Message

      



In reply to Doris W. in TN


Date: 4/3/10 1:06 AM

I didn't want to say "gathered" because it's not happening along the length of the seam (it does not become short.) What happens is that it bunches up sideways, so a 5/8 seam allowance looks narrower and lumpy.
Hope this makes sense. I'll play with the tension a bit.

clt3
clt3
Member since 2/6/06
Posts: 1138
Skill: Intermediate
Send Message

      



Date: 4/3/10 6:34 AM

Try holding on to the ends of the thread with your left hand as you start stitching,

------
Singer 66-16. Singer 600e, Kenmore 158.1913 , Viking 1100, Brother 4000D, Brother Quattro traded for Brother PR1000!, Bernina 930, Bernina 1130, White 634DE gave away to a friend,
Babylock Evolve, 2 Featherweights ,Pfaff Creative Performance,Janome Coverpro 1000CPX






aquamarineerica

aquamarineerica
Oregon USA
Member since 10/23/08
Posts: 324
Skill: Advanced Beginner
Send Message

      



Date: 4/3/10 10:28 AM

Mine has done that too. If you have a 3-step zigzag, that works well also. Seems no matter what I do, if I use a regular zigzag stitch, it will tunnel. Although now, I will try what clt3 says and hold the threads!

Good luck!
Erica

------
Every day is a clean slate.
"Decisions are made by those who show up"...Allison Janney, The West Wing

Everyday Sewist
star
Everyday Sewist
USA
Member since 9/14/02
Posts: 2707
Skill: Advanced Beginner
Send Message

      



In reply to Michelle T


Date: 4/3/10 10:33 AM

Quote:
Are you sewing on one or two layers of fabric?

Do you have a Overcast foot?

This foot helps to keep lightweight fabric flat when zig zagging.


Ditto what Michelle T said.

I always have this problem when ZZ stitching over the edge of a seam. It has nothing to do with the tension, and the overcasting foot always corrects the problem and results in a perfectly flat seam edge.

Now, if you are having the bunching even when sewing away from the edge, then it may be a tension problem.
Doris W. in TN
star
Doris W. in TN  Friend of PR
Tennessee USA
Member since 2/9/04
Posts: 8824
Skill: Intermediate
Send Message

      



In reply to dove29
thumbsup 1 member likes this.


Date: 4/4/10 1:25 PM

Quote: dove29
What happens is that it bunches up sideways, so a 5/8 seam allowance looks narrower and lumpy.

That is called "tunneling" and it will happen when zig-zagging, especially a lightweight fabric. Try some of the suggestions already given here (on some scrap fabric) but it's better if you have an overcast foot. Most modern machines come with them as a standard accessory. Be sure the edge of the fabric is not sticking out beyond the 'pin' of the overcast foot.

------
iPad's auto-correct is my enema.

Go to Page:
Please LOGIN or Join PatternReview

printable version Printable Version

* Advertising and soliciting is strictly prohibited on PatternReview.com. If you find a post which is not in agreement with our Terms and Conditions, please click on the Report Post button to report it. Beginner's Forum >> zig-zag stitches bunch up

 
adv. search»
pattern | machine | member
        
Online Class
All About Linings
All About Linings

Class Details

Online Class
Put it on the Bias
Put it on the Bias

Class Details

Other Yarn Envy's My Leetle Bag

photo
by: JEF

Review
You Sew Girl Beauty Case Pattern

You Sew Girl Beauty Case Pattern

Pattern Details
Islander Sewing Systems Motor City Express

Islander Sewing Systems Motor City Express

Pattern Details

Conditions of Use | Posting Guidelines | Privacy Policy | Shipping Rates | Returns & Refunds | Contact Us | About | New To PR | Advertising

Copyright © 2015 PatternReview.com® , OSATech, Inc. All rights reserved.