Sewing Patterns, Pattern Review, Sewing Classes, Sewing Machines and Sewing Machine Reviews!
Platinum Sponsor: Stylish Fabric
Over 20,000 of high quality reorderable fabric

[SIGNUP - FREE Membership & 1 FREE Sewing Lesson ]
[Sewing Classes|Shopping Bag Your Shopping Bag|Login|Help]
Sewing Review and Pattern Reviews Sewing Knowledge Base Sewing Patterns Sewing Classes & Sewing Lessons Sewing Machine & Embroidery Machinery Sewing Message Boards Sewing merchants Blog Help/FAQ About Pattern Review


Advanced Search
Tags
New to PR?
Find a member
MY Stuff
Friends of PR Benefits
My Pattern Reviews
My Account
Edit Profile
My Page
Widget
Photo Album
Favorites
Wish List
Pattern Catalog
Notifications
Calendar
Deal Corner
Sewing Machines
Sewing Machine Central
Compare Sewing Machines
Sewing Machine & Serger Reviews
Embroidery Machines
Sewing Reviews
Sewing Patterns
Review Gallery
Sewing Books
Sewing Supplies
Sewing Websites
Sewing Stores
Sewing Class Reviews
Sewing Expo Reviews
Sewing Tips & Techniques
Sewing Podcasts
Fabric Glossary
Sewing Review Requests
Read All Review Requests
Add a Review Request
Live Chats
Chat Room
Chat Schedule
Chat Transcripts
Sewing Classifieds
See all Classifieds
Add a Classified
Sewing Contests
all contests
contest gallery
Favorite Links
reviews with comments
merchant gallery
article archive
newsletter archive
Craft Resources
contact info
shipping rates
returns & refunds
testimonials
Platinum Sponsor - Stylish Fabric
Stylish Fabric
Darts - A Reverse Approach (Tip/Technique)
Viewed 5477 times
Review rated Helpful by 4 people   Very Helpful by 28 people   
Posted by: Linda74Sews
photo
About Linda74Sews
MI USA
Member since: 6/9/12
Reviews written: 3
Sewing skills:Expert/Couture
tips added: 1
Bio: more...
Report a problem with this review
Posted on: 1/15/13 4:14 PM
Web site/URL: photo
The subject is darts - one of the mostly commonly performed and easily done techniques for any experienced garment sewer. As we all know, darts play an important role in creating curves and shaping a garments silhouette. And, when executed well help create a professional look in clothing. In contrast, poorly executed darts can make a garment look "homemade."

So, what's the big deal? Yes, for most sewers we don't give them much thought. Within a matter of minutes they're done. But, as I have learned teaching many new sewists, this simple technique can be a daunting one. Sewing darts for the first time can consume an inordinate amount of time to accomplish when conventional methods are employed. But, it doesn't have to be that way.

I have painfully watched new sewers struggle sewing darts for the first time. Where they (and let's face it a lot of us, too) go wrong is sewing beyond the dart's end point or short ending the points that produce the dreaded pucker. Or, simply not being able to follow the dart leg properly. A task most sewists can perform with relative ease and precision can take 3-4 times as long for the beginner. This simple sewing basic should be, for all practical purposes, a cinch to master.

The objective of sewing the perfect dart is pretty straightforward. Follow a properly marked, and pinned, dart leg to a precise end point without overshooting, backstitching or short ending it.

I have a nice library of reference books, from basic sewing how-tos, to textbooks and those advocating couture techniques which I frequently consult to ensure I teach my students proper techniques. All of them instruct sewers to sew darts starting from the wide end. Whether there is a technical reason for starting there I have yet to find one. For a new sewer (or even some of us more experienced ones) when starting from the wide end the task of finishing the dart at the precise end point can be a challenge. All the more important when they sit right and left of one another. The last thing you want is to have one dart taller or shorter than the other. OOPS!

To remedy this I now instruct my new students to sew darts starting at the end point. Gosh, I wish I had thought of this sooner! By doing so darts all finish at the precise end point - hooray! And, if properly marked the dart leg is much easier to follow - another hooray! Most of my students can now complete a dart well on the first try.

The trickiest part is positioning the needle to go into the dart point just a thread away from the fold line so as not to create a pucker. Furthermore, to ensure a secure dart stitch the first quarter inch or so with the stitch length reduced to a small 1.5 cm setting and then turn up the stitch length to a normal setting for the balance of the dart.

I am amazed at how much faster my students can master this most basic of sewing tasks. More importantly of course, the darts are far better done than those performed using the traditional, prescribed methods. No more puckered end points. Left and right darts are balanced. And, fewer darts have to be ripped out and redone. Mission accomplished! I now have happy students who have easily mastered one of the most basic of techniques that they will perform many many times in their sewing journeys.
Merchants on PR
Fitz Like a Glove Ironing Board Cover
Made In Australia
Deals!
SewBaby
Unique Sewing Patterns
Deals!
Budo Bear Designs
Asian Designs
Web site

<< Previous Next >>

Add Tip/Technique    Read All Tip/Techniques


7 Comments      Login to Add a Comment
SandiMacD said...
When I first saw this done i was astounded- such a sensible way to learn! Of course i am old school and you are right- they don't cause any problem for me. But I am teaching others this new way because it is easier to master.
1/16/13 6:00 AM
landstromd said...
I never thought much about darts prior to joining Pattern Review and being introduced to Peggy Sagers at Silhouette Patterns, but I must say I now REALLY look and work at my darts. I am not always successful in sewing them without a pucker so I am excited and curious to see if I can manage this new way of doing darts. Thanks for this tip, hopefully it will work for me as well!
1/16/13 11:25 AM
JOshiro said...
I wonder if the instructions to go from wide to narrow is to avoid the fabric puckering. See here - http://gorgeousfabrics.com/blog/2011/12/06/there-are-no-hard-and-fast-rules-in-sewing/
1/17/13 9:57 AM
SavageCoco said...
Brilliant!
1/17/13 12:06 PM
5tummies said...
THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU. I'm just learning how to sew, I don't have the money for classes so I rely on this website, books,blogs, and YouTube. I have put in countless hours attempting to understand and execute darts. And your article was my light-bulb moment. Thank you Thank you!
1/18/13 12:47 PM
regine said...
Brilliant idea, will try it next time.
1/19/13 4:53 PM
lamstu said...
I have sewn darts for decades and I always start at the wide end. My issue with starting at the narrow end is that the fabric can easily get pushed down into the feed dogs, and thereby ruined. However, I've seen this advice in other places, so I will try it on my next sturdy fabric project.
1/27/13 1:25 AM

Copyright © 2014 PatternReview.com® , OSATech, Inc. All rights reserved.
Conditions of Use | Posting Guidelines | Privacy Policy | Contact Us