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Finishing sewn seams with serger?
stirwatersblue
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stirwatersblue
Intermediate
Kansas USA
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Date: 5/29/12 2:43 PM

I'm making a pair of pants from a beautiful drapey wool crepe, and it's really ravelly. I was too scared to try sewing them together with my new(ish) serger, but I'd love to have the beautiful serged finish inside. Can I do this? Did I need to serge the seam allowances first, or can it still be done once everything is sewn together (seams are already pressed)? I have a nice overcast stitch on my SM, but that sort of defeats the purpose of having the serger in the first place!

Advice?
Thanks!!

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~Gem in the prairie

Trinity.
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Trinity.
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Massachusetts USA
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Date: 5/29/12 3:09 PM

It's probably good that you didn't sew the seams with the serger -- I haven't had very good experiences with just the serged seam and ravelly fabrics. I've had a couple of things pull apart at the seams because the fabric was too loosely woven. The 1/4 inch SA that was left after serging just wasn't enough to keep the threads from simply pulling away at the seamline. Now I hardly ever use the serger to sew woven seams unless I'm absolutely sure that it won't happen again.

Once it's seamed, though, there's no reason you can't serge the seam allowances for a nice finish. If you're stitching the SAs together, it's pretty easy.
Finishing them separately is a little trickier, but it can still be done.

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Trinity

http://thimblesthreadsandneedles.blogspot.com/

diane s
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diane s  Friend of PR
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Date: 5/29/12 4:38 PM

With a fabric that ravels alot, I prefer to serge the edges first, so it's not so messy when handling. I do it right on the edge,without cutting.
To finish the seams after, just open the seam and go down each edge, or serge them together. Much faster than with your sewing machine.

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My grandmother taught me to sew when I was 10, and I've been sewing ever since.

Laurie Lou
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Laurie Lou  Friend of PR
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Date: 5/29/12 5:27 PM

I too do as Diane S i just cut off just a fraction of the edge to keep them clean and my serger does a nicer job. I agree don't serge together.

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Laurie Lou

LynnRowe
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LynnRowe  Friend of PR
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In reply to stirwatersblue <<


Date: 5/29/12 7:27 PM

I often use my serger to finish seams. Always press the seam flat as sewn, and then open...even if you plan to finish the seams together as one. Just press the seams flat again after pressing open.

Pressing seams open is "busting" the seam, and it makes a huge difference in the appearance and lay of the seam line.

You can also use your serger to protect fabrics from unraveling in the prewashing; just serge both raw edges first, and no ball of thread when the spin cycle is done.

------
I heart Panzy, Pfaff Creative Performance, the sewing machine love of my life!
And Baby (Enlighten serger), Victor (BLCS), Ash (B350SE-Artwork), Kee (B750QEE-Panzy's BFF), Georgie (B560-Kee's baby sister) and the Feather-Flock!

Most of all, I heart Woo (HimmyCat). Until we meet again, my beautiful little boy. I love you.

heathergwo
heathergwo
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California USA
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Date: 5/29/12 8:14 PM

I agree with all above... no reason you can't serge after you've sewn together.

BUT... if I can throw another idea out there... I really like French seams for very ravelly fabrics. It's very easy to do and as long as your fabric isn't super thick, it shouldn't add much bulk. It's another way to keep really ravelly fabrics nice on the inside!

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Brother Innovis 1250D
Babylock Enlighten
Singer Curvy 8763
Brother 1034D
Janome 385.19606
Brother 2340CV

Nancy K
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Nancy K
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In reply to stirwatersblue <<


Date: 5/29/12 10:24 PM

You really should line your pair of wool crepe pants which will protect them from raveling and make them last longer. Also wool can be itchy. But in any event you should not just sew a pair of pants with a serger. Sew with your machine, press open and then finish your seams. You can't easily alter or fit pants whose seams have been serged together.

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www.nancyksews.blogspot.com

arianamaniacs
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Date: 5/30/12 2:38 AM

I also sew first and then finish the seams with the serger. I find serger seams to be much weaker than a sewing machine seam

mastdenman
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mastdenman  Friend of PR
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Date: 5/30/12 11:23 AM

If I'm making a pair of pants out of wool, I always serge the cut out pieces with a narrow three thread serge before sewing the pants. click here By the way, these pants have been washed and worn repeatedly. I believe on these I probably used a four thread serger seam on the cut out pieces.
-- Edited on 5/30/12 11:26 AM --

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Marilyn

January 2009 to January 2010 81 yards out and 71yards in January 2010 to the present 106.7 yards out and 146.5 yards in. January 2011 to the present: 47 yards out and 69 yards in.

couturemom
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couturemom
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Date: 5/30/12 12:50 PM

It's so interesting how everyone has their own method. I personally do not serge edges before sewing the seam, as I'm afraid it will distort the fabric and stretch the edges I'm trying to align.

I do agree with NOT serging the edges together, though, as the seam would be bulkier, which you don't want on crepe pants.

Thanks for the tip on pressing seams flat, even if you're serging the edges together. I have never done this, but can see how that would make for a nicer pressed seam, especially on the outside.

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