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Forum > Patterns and Notions > Clear elastic - is it a notion? ( Moderated by Sharon1952)

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Clear elastic - is it a notion?
How resilient is it to needle, pins etc. Can I reuse it?
tourist
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tourist  Friend of PR
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Date: 7/10/13 4:34 PM

As I have been working on my current project I have found myself re-pinning a couple of pieces of clear elastic and am a bit concerned that I am weakening it too much. Just how much punishment can it take?

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http://bgballroom.wordpress.com to follow the progress on my next ballgown.

Barbara3
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In reply to tourist <<


Date: 7/11/13 11:40 AM

You didn't mention what type of sewing project you're working on, or how long the piece of clear elastic you're using might be. But, just for reference, I use clear elastic in the necklines of nearly all of my rayon/lycra knit tops. It's a great way of adding a little extra strength to this type of neckline. But, on the occasions that the neckline hasn't come out as smooth as I would like, I've removed the elastic and reinserted it. I apply it to the wrong side with a fairly wide zigzag stitch and it's easy to remove. But I never reuse the same piece. That elastic is so inexpensive and it seems not worth taking the chance that it won't perform as expected - given all of the work of making the entire garment.

Since your question was really about damaging the elastic by repining, I will say that I rarely pin it before inserting since it's pretty easy to just hold in place while stitching. I use a Teflon foot and this eliminates any drag. It really depends on how many pins you've redone and over what length, but I guess if I were concerned that the elastic had been damaged by too many holes, I'd just start with a new piece.

HTH!

PattiAnnJ
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Date: 7/11/13 11:59 AM

Ditto, Barbara3!

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"Improvise, adapt and overcome." - Clint Eastwood/Heartbreak Ridge

SheBear0320
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Date: 7/11/13 2:30 PM

I'm another one who uses very few pins when I'm applying this elastic -- if it needs to be stretch I may pin at halfway mark and the end but if it's 1:1 usually no pins.

I use a lot of clear elastic especially on the necklines and armholes of illusion mesh on my skating and dance costumes. Apply with a wide zigzag and a Teflon foot -- works great for me.

I buy the clear elastic by the roll so it's super cheap -- if in doubt, I start with a new piece.

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Sheila
"sewing very slowly to fill an empty closet"

2014 Stash Busting Sew-Along:
56.0 yards sewn (as of 08/13/14)
113.125 yards purchased (as of 08/13/14)

tourist
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Date: 7/11/13 3:09 PM

Thanks everyone. I have been treating the clear elastic just as you have said. It seems easier and cheaper that way. I think I was getting concerned as I was down to one small length and if it didn't go well, it was going to mean a trip to the fabric store.

Barbara - as a general rule, if I am posting questions it is because I am in the midst of making a ballroom competition gown. I do make a few other things, but that is what seems to take most of my sewing time.

Current gown in progress

Side view of the one in my avatar

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http://bgballroom.wordpress.com to follow the progress on my next ballgown.

Tizmehr
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Date: 7/11/13 7:18 PM

When you add the elastic to the neckline, do you put it in so that it lies flat in the seam allowance or against the bodice which is that little bit bigger than the seam allowance? I'm probably being as clear as mud with my question so if anyone knows of a good tutorial I'd be much appreciative.

Barbara3
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In reply to tourist <<


Date: 7/11/13 8:54 PM

Those are lovely, tourist. I would definitely not waste time and effort with questionable elastic on those dresses! Why not buy some extra just to have on hand? Cleaner's Supply and Wawak have 1/4 inch and 3/8 inch widths in 5 yard and 150 yard lengths of good quality clear elastic at great prices. I usually buy 4 or 5 of the 5 yard lengths of each size from CS at a time - and that lasts me for awhile. In fact, Wawak has an online code coupon now which I believe is good for a few months that gives $20 off any purchase of $40 or more. Check out the latest issue of Threads or the boards here on PR. And, if you buy in quantity, be sure to keep in a plastic ziplock bag out of direct sunlight. HTH

Edited because I should have added that the 5 yard lengths are only $1.65 for the 1/4 inch and $1.99 for the 3/8 inch. A small price to pay for not having to run out in the middle of a project.
-- Edited on 7/11/13 9:40 PM --

Barbara3
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In reply to Tizmehr <<


Date: 7/11/13 8:59 PM

Tizmehr, I mostly use 3/8 inch seam allowances at the neckline and I put 1/4 inch clear elastic very close to (but not at) the edge of the wrong side of the fabric. I just don't want it to show on the inside when I turn the seam allowance and top stitch. Works like a charm. HTH
-- Edited on 7/11/13 9:42 PM --

Tizmehr
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In reply to Barbara3 <<


Date: 7/12/13 10:07 AM

I'm trying hard to get a picture in my head of what you're doing with the elastic at the neckline. Sorry but I'm still confused. The edge of the seam allowance will be very slightly smaller than where the seam is actually sewn. Will the elastic lay flat when the turned? If it's flat, that would mean it would need to be slightly eased in at the edge of the seam. Right? Is it sewn in when you stitch the seam or is it added when you finish the seam allowance?

tourist
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Date: 7/12/13 10:50 AM

Generally, I have been following the Kwik Sew instructions for regular elastic, which are to put the elastic on the wrong side close to the raw edge and zig zag using a wide, longer than medium zig zag and stitch in the middle of the elastic. Then turn and zig zag over the raw edge using a smaller stitch.

For the raw edges of the illusion on this dress, I used a smaller stitch than usual and stitched close to the inner edge of the elastic for the initial application, then over the raw edge after I turned it. That firmed up the edge that I was turning, which is a little "floppy" with clear elastic compared to other types and also left a bit of a channel between the two rows of stitching that has no needle holes. And it looks neater, which is nice because it can be seen and I need all the help I can get on making my sewing look neater.

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http://bgballroom.wordpress.com to follow the progress on my next ballgown.

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