SIGNUP - FREE Membership and 1 FREE Sewing Lesson
| FAQ | Login
 

Forum > Beginner's Forum > Stretch Knit fabric advice ( Moderated by EleanorSews)

Please LOGIN or Join PatternReview
Go to Page:
Stretch Knit fabric advice
Want to sew a stretch-knit dress... looking for words of wisdom!!
Ec
star
Ec
Advanced Beginner
AUSTRALIA
Member since 5/9/05
Posts: 70
Send Message

      



Date: 12/21/05 11:09 PM

I have been sewing small projects since I was a kid, but have never tackled stretch-knit sewing.

I still call myself a beginner in most respects because I have never LOVED an item I have made... and I want to feel that LOVE!!!

I saw some lovely vintage floral stretch-knit fabric on special about 12 months ago and found a dress pattern and bought enough fabric to make three dresses (in 3 different vintage designs).

Problem is, I've never sewn with this type of flimsy-feel poly/cotton/lycra mix stuff.

I have a Bernina 830 which I use for sewing & overcasting.

(I have a Janome (not sure of model) overlocker which I won in a competition a few years ago. I went and learned how to use it, but somehow it became de-threaded when I moved from one house to another, and I can't get it threaded properly again. I followed the instructions in the Janome book but when I go to sew, the threads tangle and knot and break... and it's a huge mess!!!)

THE QUESTIONS:

Do I NEED to get my overlocker threaded (and serviced) - or can I use my regular machine on stretch-knit fabric?

What stitches are recommended for such fabric with a regular machine?

How do I stabilise the flimsy fabric while sewing - stop it from stretching/buckling up/being eaten by my machine?

Have you any further advice for me...?

Happy Holiday Season everyone!
-- Edited on 12/22/05 0:13 AM --

G_l_e_n_d_a
star
G_l_e_n_d_a
Advanced Beginner
CA USA
Member since 5/11/05
Posts: 1116
Send Message

      



Date: 12/21/05 11:18 PM

Happy Holidays to you, too!

You can sew knits without your serger... but a serger is so nice to have that I personally think you should figure it out one way or another!

On your regular sewing machine, you would use a very narrow zigzag stitch on the seams. To stabilize the fabric while sewing it you can hold both the piece that is in front of the foot and the piece that is behind the foot taut. Let the machine feed it through.

You might want to search the boards for previous threads on this topic and see what others have said.

Ec
star
Ec
Advanced Beginner
AUSTRALIA
Member since 5/9/05
Posts: 70
Send Message

      



In reply to G_l_e_n_d_a


Date: 12/21/05 11:53 PM

Thank you so much, I am about to embark on some research - (I read that Kwik Sew give good advice for stretch knit sewing too ;)) then attempt those dresses in the very near future!!!

Erica
-- Edited on 12/22/05 6:21 PM --

Pam Z
Pam Z
Intermediate
CA USA
Member since 2/17/03
Posts: 236
Send Message

      



Date: 12/22/05 1:23 AM

If you have a threading diagram for your serger and want to try threading it, make sure that you take all thread out of the tension disks and thread in the order specified in your diagram. The needle should be threaded last. This is very important.

Sew*Confused*Jo

Sew*Confused*Jo
Beginner
FL USA
Member since 12/5/05
Posts: 360
Send Message

      



In reply to Ec


Date: 12/22/05 8:04 AM

I just finished my first knit dress. I did the darts on my regular machine in case I needed to rip them out. I used polyarn in the bobbin; it made a very stretchy seam.
.

Patti B
starstarstarstar
Patti B  Friend of PR
Intermediate
OR USA
Member since 9/29/02
Posts: 2384
Send Message

      



Date: 12/22/05 8:44 AM

Ec, you have a great, classic sewing machine that will easily sew knits. A serger is wonderful for knits but I sewed for decades on my Bernina and never had a problem. Do use the narrow zigzag -- it's so narrow that it looks just a little ziggy. The stitch isn't much shorter than your normal stitch. Do practice on scraps first -- then make note of your settings and method in a little book or the manual.

If the knit is very lightweight and your test pieces slip into the throatplate to be eaten by the sewing machine monster (happens to everyone some time or other), put tissue paper or a thin water soluble stabilizer (like Aqua Film) down, then the fabric. Start sewing on the paper or stabilizer an inch or so before the fabric -- you'll tear this off when the seam is finished.

Since knits don't ravel, I don't bother with overlocking or zigzagging the edges.

HTH
-- Edited on 12/22/05 9:45 AM --

------
Patti

R-r-r-ripping my way to fitting success

redhead
star
redhead
Advanced
TN USA
Member since 10/18/03
Posts: 1098
Send Message

      



Date: 12/22/05 10:04 AM

I did this whole knit dress on the sewing machine with the tiniest zig zag for seams. I was feeling disenchanted with my serger at the time. We later made up with each other, though. Perhaps a dealer can help you get re-threaded again, but in the meantime, there is no reason why you can't sew a dress on your conventional machine.

Burda WOF knit dress

I have never used this, but others swear by it to help keep necklines and hems from stretching as you work, and that is called "steam a seam." It is some sort of fusible tape that is available in different weights, and it might be worth checking out.

Sarah

Ec
star
Ec
Advanced Beginner
AUSTRALIA
Member since 5/9/05
Posts: 70
Send Message

      



In reply to Pam Z


Date: 12/22/05 5:05 PM

Thanks for your advice! I did use the book's instructions but I seem to remember threading the needle second-to-last, so will try doing it last.

Perhaps the machine will be in a better mood with me now that I've let it rest & sleep for 12 months?!!

Ec
star
Ec
Advanced Beginner
AUSTRALIA
Member since 5/9/05
Posts: 70
Send Message

      



In reply to Patti B


Date: 12/22/05 5:16 PM

Thank you so much for this advice Patti, it is just what I needed to know!

Yes, the machine is wonderful! I have a sentimental attachment to it also, as it was my Nanna's. She used to make all her own clothes and always looked smart and stylish!

I took it to be serviced and the sales man wanted to buy it off me for a grand price. There's no way I'm letting it go - ever!

I wasn't sure which width zig-zag to use, but it sounds like if I turn the width knob over just ONE 'click', it will be the right width. ... and yes, I will try on scraps of fabric first thank goodness I bought PLENTY of it just in case of mistakes ;)

Thanks again and Happy Holidays to you and yours.

Erica.

Ec
star
Ec
Advanced Beginner
AUSTRALIA
Member since 5/9/05
Posts: 70
Send Message

      



In reply to redhead


Date: 12/22/05 5:19 PM

Hey, that's a nice dress, I seem to remember checking out the review for this dress (by you) a while back actually!

Thanks :)

Go to Page:
Please LOGIN or Join PatternReview

printable version Printable Version

* Advertising and soliciting is strictly prohibited on PatternReview.com. If you find a post which is not in agreement with our Terms and Conditions, please click on the Report Post button to report it. Beginner's Forum >> Stretch Knit fabric advice

Merchants on PR

Patterns from the Past


vintage sewing patterns
Deals!

Reconstructing History


Reconstructing History
Web site

Elliott Berman Textiles


Fabrics for Greater Ideas
Deals!

Gwyn Hug


Fabric Shopping Help!
Deals!

Lanetzliving Vintage Sewing Patterns


Vintage Sewing Patterns
Deals!

 
adv. search»
pattern | machine | member
        
Fun with Fitting - PANTS
Fun with Fitting - PANTS

Register

Beginners Guide to Dyeing Fabrics
Beginners Guide to Dyeing Fabrics

Register

BurdaStyle Magazine 08-2005-102

photo
by: yummymummy...

Review
BurdaStyle Magazine 08-2012-120

photo
by: Irene Bull...

Review
Fit For Art Eureka! Pants that Fit Pattern

Fit For Art Eureka! Pants that Fit Pattern

Buy Now
10 inch Serrated Edge Shears

10 inch Serrated Edge Shears

Buy Now

Conditions of Use | Posting Guidelines | Privacy Policy | Shipping Rates | Returns & Refunds | Contact Us | About | New To PR | Advertising

Copyright © 2014 PatternReview.com® , OSATech, Inc. All rights reserved.