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Reference materials needed
Lining and topstitching are making me crazy
hilaryjade
hilaryjade
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Member since 8/13/10
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Date: 8/28/13 11:40 PM

Hi - I just finished a blazer and realized I need help finding some resources on a few different topics.
1. Lining a blazer with functional sleeve vents - I found a great post on this site but struggled a little to follow it and I think some of that struggle may be because I wanted my sleeve vents to actually button / unbutton and some was because I may have needed a few more pictures - I had trouble visualizing what was being described. I want to understand better how to insert linings by machine as well - I always seem to end up stuck with some odd edges that I end up having to wriggle about and hand stitch. I just don't think I'm understanding the basics here. Does anyone know of a good book that will cover this, or a particular pattern that has excellent instructions that may make more sense?
2. Topstitching - when working with a pattern that doesn't have topstitching that I want to add topstitching to (I think it makes things look RTW) I have a very hard time deciding what to topstitch - I end up second guessing a lot, putting stitching in and picking it back out and so on. I just don't feel like I have a good instinct about what seams to topstitch and how to pick what to topstitch. Are there any good rules about this? Any good books or sites that might help?
3. Adding seam and hem allowances to pattern pieces (like Burda) - I am having a hard time understanding how to angle things. That is - if I just continue the line of the side seam down for the hem allowance straight from the bottom edge, when I fold the hem up, it is too wide - it needs to reflect the shape of the seam, I think? I don't know that I'm even using the right words here - but I am wondering if there is a good tutorial out there for adding seam allowances and hem allowances, because I think there is a better way than what I'm currently doing.

Thanks for any help - I'm reasonably happy with the jacket I just finished, but it was my 3rd lined jacket and I feel like I would like to address these knowledge gaps prior to attempting another one.

clothingengineer
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In reply to hilaryjade <<


Date: 8/29/13 10:24 AM

Tailoring: The Classic Guide to Sewing the Perfect Jacket and the Tailored Jacket ebook by Kenneth King are both good general jacket/coat references.

Why not photocopy the line drawing, enlarging the size a little, and then manually draw in little topstitching dashes to see how it looks? Sometimes when I'm thinking of making a style adjustment I will trace the line drawing in pencil, don't see why topstitching wouldn't work the same way.

I usually fold up the hem allowance along the foldline and trace along the seam allowance edge.

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beauturbo
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Date: 8/29/13 1:29 PM

For top stitching, as if you really don't know where you would want to put it on some garment, or how much of it on there each time, I don't think any kind of U tube video or on line tutorial is going to help all that much at all. As that is not the same thing as just instead how to top stitch some garment. So for that, I think you need just lots of real garments in front of you, that have already been made up, and you like. Then you can really see all the different ways it's on there, and even actually feel with your fingers how that changes the "hand of the fabric" right there often too. All those garments would just be in all the real brick and mortar stores, (or maybe your own closet) just in all large shopping centers. So maybe just go look shopping in some large shopping centers or malls or such.

I guess if you really can't do that, and only have the internet and nothing else, go to some rather high end place on line like
NET-A-PORTER.COM and really look as best you can there at something you might like, just because they have a pretty good zoom in function, but the internet is really no substitute at all for having real garments visually and just more in your hand, just in front of you ever.

I think if you take one small narrow rectangle of folded up matching fabric and pretend to top stitch on it though, as in really put a line of stitching on it, then you could just lay that on top of, any areas of your garment at all (like seams, sleeves, hems, pockets, collars, yokes, plackets or just anything) and then step back about at least 3 feet away from it, and then just eyeball it more from that distance, and really get a pretty good idea of what it would be looking like for real there, more overall, in any one place, before actually doing any stitching. That probably would save you a whole bunch of ripping out of stitches later, if you just keep changing your mind, on if you had wanted it there later or not possibly. Maybe try that?


-- Edited on 8/29/13 4:04 PM --

Vicsguy
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In reply to beauturbo <<


Date: 8/29/13 4:37 PM

Quote: beauturbo
I think if you take one small narrow rectangle of folded up matching fabric and pretend to top stitch on it though, as in really put a line of stitching on it, then you could just lay that on top of, any areas of your garment at all (like seams, sleeves, hems, pockets, collars, yokes, plackets or just anything) and then step back about at least 3 feet away from it, and then just eyeball it more from that distance, and really get a pretty good idea of what it would be looking like for real there, more overall, in any one place, before actually doing any stitching. That probably would save you a whole bunch of ripping out of stitches later, if you just keep changing your mind, on if you had wanted it there later or not possibly. Maybe try that?

Brilliant!
hilaryjade
hilaryjade
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In reply to beauturbo <<


Date: 8/30/13 7:21 PM

I agree with the poster above me - that is a great idea - I always do some sample topstitching on scraps anyway, to decide on thread, stitch length, etc - so I could just use my top stitch sample to help me determine where I want it. Thank you so much!

hilaryjade
hilaryjade
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In reply to clothingengineer <<


Date: 8/30/13 7:22 PM

Quote: clothingengineer
Tailoring: The Classic Guide to Sewing the Perfect Jacket and the Tailored Jacket ebook by Kenneth King are both good general jacket/coat references.



Why not photocopy the line drawing, enlarging the size a little, and then manually draw in little topstitching dashes to see how it looks? Sometimes when I'm thinking of making a style adjustment I will trace the line drawing in pencil, don't see why topstitching wouldn't work the same way.



I usually fold up the hem allowance along the foldline and trace along the seam allowance edge.

Thanks for the book recommendations - I'll check them out. I also like the idea of adding to the line drawing - that may help me visually make up my mind where to top stitch.

Thanks for the hem allowance tip - that makes perfect sense and I'll take that approach going forward!
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