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PatternReview Blog > Tip Tuesday: One-thread Dart
Tip Tuesday: One-thread Dart By AlexisW on 5/20/14 12:42 PM

One-thread Dart

- by MarinaVK

I love using one thread-dart (which is stitched starting from a dart point) because it eliminates unsightly thread tails at the point.

In addition, Roberta Carr in her great book Couture: The Art of Fine Sewing argues that this type of dart has a smoother, pucker-free point and is easy to press. I am not sure if there is big difference to the traditional technique, but this technique never failed producing perfect darts.

Because of the neat finishing, this technique is definitely most advisable on sheer fabrics or whenever the inside appearance of the garment matters.

However, Roberta Carr also recommends using it:

  • On short darts (1 ½ (4cm) or less), as in the cap of a sleeve
  • On fabric that is difficult to press, such as gabardine
  • On darts that extend almost to the bust point
  • In very fitted garments
  • In tailored garments

Step 1: 

Remove the top thread from your needle and thread it backwards with the bobbin thread using a needle threader.

Step 2:

Tie the two threads together using the smallest possible knot.

Step 3:

Re-wind the bobbin thread upward until it wraps around the top thread spool several times (appr. three-times the length of the finished dart).

Step 4:

Stitch the dart from dart point starting with a denser stitch (appr. 20 stitches per inch). The first stitch should start exactly on the fabric fold! After ½ inch (1cm) return to regular stitch length appropriate for the type of fabric.


You will have to rethread the machine for each dart, but trust me, it is really worth the trouble! 


Republished with permission from MarinaVK.

Read MarinaVK's Reviews on PR.

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Have a helpful tip or technique? Let us know!

Filed Under: Tutorial  

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17 Comments      Login to Add a Comment    
Bonny Dune said... (5/30/14 9:43 AM) Reply
i am finding step one to be unclear. I think the problem stems from the use of the word 'it.' Does it refer to the top thread, or the bottom thread? The order you refer to the threads suggests you mean the needle thread, but I think you mean the bobbin thread. This is the result of editing for years. lol
IevinaMcD said... (5/29/14 4:12 AM) Reply
A very intriguing idea, but with all this re-threading, maybe it would be easier to hand-sew these darts?
milpg said... (5/28/14 9:12 PM) Reply
There seems to be some steps missing?
Elation said... (5/28/14 5:31 PM) Reply
If your fabric tends to flag into the hole when you start sewing, then use a straight stitch plate. A piece of cellophane tape can suffice but gets tricky with luxe and delicate fabrics, and tends to gum up the needle. Tissue paper is helpful many times if you can get the fibers out. (On smaller stitch length, it tends to just perforate it so not a problem).
needlesforpins said... (5/28/14 4:01 PM) Reply
We were taught this "couture dart" stitching method when I was in college. It does make a pretty dart.
pointpatou said... (5/28/14 1:51 PM) Reply
I was aware of, but have not used this method. The method I prefer, at least for non-sheers, is to leave long tails, thread them into a hand sewing needle and tack them down. I learned this in a couture class. To create a flat dart, I stitch the last few machine stitches right on the fold.
KultaKoru said... (5/28/14 1:23 PM) Reply
Another trick is to use piece of tape over the keyplate hole. Pierce a hole with an old needle (to not to gum needle) and sew.
madseamstresstoo said... (5/28/14 12:42 PM) Reply
If your machinetries to pull the fabric down into the bobbin case, try putting a scrap piece of fabric behind the presser foot. or Be sure that there is a little slack in the bobbin thread under the presser foot.
geckokl said... (5/28/14 9:52 AM) Reply
*stabilizer* not stabilized. Geez. Apparently I should just give up and go back to bed for the rest of the day. (I wish! LOL)
geckokl said... (5/28/14 9:47 AM) Reply
Oh wait!! This just clicked in my brain. You are pulling the bobbin thread through the needle backwards in order to tie it off. The thread is actually running in the normal direction. Duh. Still would like to know if stabilized would keep the fabric from being pushed into the footplate hole though...
geckokl said... (5/28/14 9:45 AM) Reply
I understand the idea of tying the threads together to eliminate the tails, but am wondering why you would need to reverse the thread through the needle. Since machine needles have a groove to allow the thread to flow through it, wouldn't the thread break if it is inserted backwards? Has anyone actually done this? My machine also chews up fabric when I sew from the point. Would putting some sort of tear-away stabilizer help with this? Thanks for any clarification, because I would love it if this actually works.
GeoP said... (5/28/14 8:10 AM) Reply
Whe I try to sew darts from the dart point, my fabric always gets chewed up by the machine, especially if the fabric is light weight. I found that I can stop that by holding the thread ends when I start sewing, but with this method there are no ends. Hmm, am I the only one who's having this issue?
trumbelina said... (5/22/14 10:35 AM) Reply
I've also used this method for pintucks that extend from the middle of a bodice to a seam.
SandiMacD said... (5/21/14 10:27 PM) Reply
It seems unusual to reverse the thread towards to spool. Generally I have been told by dealers never to pull a thread back. It should be clipped at the spool and alway be pulled in the direction of the path towards the neede to avoid problems.
sewtime said... (5/20/14 7:16 PM) Reply
This is a wow tip! Thank you
Quickie said... (5/20/14 12:55 PM) Reply
mchinadoll said... (5/20/14 12:52 PM) Reply
Wow this is awesome to know. I can't wait to try this.

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