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Tips & Techniques > Use masking tape to mark your darts

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Posted by: alysonwonderlan

About alysonwonderlan star
Member since: 5/11/05
Reviews: 30 (tips: 1)
Skill level:Intermediate
Favored by: 5 people
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Posted on: 7/5/05 11:01 AM
Review Rating: Helpful by 2 people   Very Helpful by 9 people   
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Have you ever had the problem where your darts look pointy on the end, causing an unflattering point right over your chest (or butt, depending on what you're darting)? It's probably because your seam isn't perfectly straight. Many peoplehave the tendency to sort of "curve" off the edge of the fabric too soon.

To combat that problem, mark along your dart seam line with masking tape and sew from the outside of the garment to the point of the dart RIGHT ALONG THE TAPE. Do not deviate. Leave yourself enough thread at the end to tie a knot. Do so and remove the tape - you should have a perfectly shaped dart.

This method works for any spot where you need a crisp point and you can use low-tack painters tape for more delicate fabrics.

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jkbd said... (2/26/07 11:55 AM) Reply
As a beginner sewer figuring out how to transfer the pattern markings has been my biggest challenge. I just tried this and it worked great! Thanks!
inkyannie said... (7/30/05 10:10 PM) Reply
Thanks for this idea. I like it better than marking with a pen as I have been doing.
esmer said... (7/19/05 5:54 PM) Reply
I like this idea! I will give it a try becuase when I mark my fabric the marking on the fabric seams to fade under the sewing machine lightbulb. I believe that if I use the tape to guide me instead I won't strain my eyes anymore. Thanks for the tip.
BeckyW said... (7/17/05 7:49 AM) Reply
Great tip. I would have not have thought of this. I use painters tape topstitching zippers and on the bed of my machine for seam allowance guides, but I love having another use.
rhoda bicycle said... (7/11/05 7:19 AM) Reply
I've always had trouble with darts and will definately try this next time.
Everyday Sewist said... (7/7/05 9:09 AM) Reply
I also use scotch tape for marking topstitching. I had not used it for darts, but this is a great idea and I can't wait to try it.
alysonwonderlan said... (7/7/05 8:13 AM) Reply
SewVeryTall, Thanks for fielding the question. :-) Diane, I'm glad SewVeryTall was able to solve the problem for you - and II'm glad the tip will help you out!
Cloud9 said... (7/7/05 3:19 AM) Reply
Thanks, SewVeryTall. Ahhhh... Now I can visualize how this procedure works. This is a fantastic idea. Great timing, too because I have several alteration projects--mostly darts in the bodice area. This idea will make my project so much easier. Thanks to both Alyson and SewVeryTall!
SewVeryTall said... (7/7/05 0:57 AM) Reply
Diane...since I'm here, I'll reply...when she said 'outside', she means the widest part of the dart at the 'edge' of the fabric [as opposed to starting to sew at the 'inside', or point of the dart].
Iris said... (7/6/05 3:08 PM) Reply
Great Idea !!! ...Thanks !!!
Cloud9 said... (7/6/05 2:35 PM) Reply
Hi Alyson, I don't want to seem too dense, but I am a beginner, beginner and I can't seem to visualize how this technique works. You say to apply tape and sew from the outside of the garment. I only can picture sewing a dart from the inside of the garment. I'm sure your technique is obvious to many sewers, but I am pretty inexperienced at this. Thanks, Diane
SandraB said... (7/6/05 10:31 AM) Reply
Thanks for this tip. Very helpful. Instead of tying a knot at the end, I usually shorten the stitch length in the last half inch or so of the dart. The only problem with this is if you ever need to pick out your stitches, then God help you.
Mary Stiefer said... (7/5/05 6:00 PM) Reply
oops, I also meant to add that "great minds think alike" - hehehe. Thanks for putting this great tip into print.
Mary Stiefer said... (7/5/05 5:59 PM) Reply
This is amazing. I just did that with the last blouse that I made. It works like a charm.
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