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Message Board > Sewing Techniques and Tips > Creating ruffles using the coverstitch ( Moderated by MissCelie)

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Creating ruffles using the coverstitch
Fast and easy technique
purplebouquet
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purplebouquet
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AR USA
Member since 11/16/05
Posts: 1168
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Date: 3/15/07 9:53 AM

I was quite pleased with the results of some experimentation last night: I created evenly spaced, very tight ruffles using the coverstitch function of my serger. There is a trick to making these come out so nicely that I wanted to post.

I set up the machine according to the manualís instructions: wide coverstitch, differential to 2, longest stitch length. That created some gathers, shall we say, a little wave? Not nearly enough for what I needed. I then tried pulling on the needle thread tails, but they were tightly knotted with the looper thread, just as they are supposed to, to keep the seam taut and stable.

Then I dawned on me: I need to clear the stitch fingers prior to starting and stopping the coverstitch. Thatís the kicker. That way, the threads donít knot at the beginning and end, and itís very easy and fast (!) to gather the needle threads to create the desired ruffles.

I was sewing on very lightweight cotton, so adjusting the tension wasnít necessary. I imagine that heavier fabric would require that.

I guess the regular serger stitch could be adjusted in the same way; of course those gathers or ruffles would be very close to the edge of the fabric. But I think I will prefer the coverstitch because it leaves me a good seam allowance.

I am glad Iíve discovered this. Gathering is one of my least favorite sewing tasks, and this method will take some of the drudgery out of it.

Maybe this helps somebody.

Claudia

Addendum to clarify "clearing the stitch finger": This means that you untangle the threads so that they are in the same position they are in when you first thread the machine from scratch. They have not joined to form a stitch.
On my machine, all I do is pull on the two needle threads just before they go through the eye of the needles so that I create some slack of about 2 inches. I just tug a bit with my fingers or sometimes--when I am blurry-eyed--insert the awl behind them and pull forward.
Then I gently pull on the thread tail to make sure the needle threads are taut again. This will clear the stitch finger.
The serger's manual might offer an additional explanation.


-- Edited on 2/22/09 3:35 PM --

ChristineS

ChristineS
Intermediate
AUSTRALIA
Member since 6/13/04
Posts: 148
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In reply to purplebouquet


Date: 3/15/07 10:02 AM

Great tip - thank you Claudia. Will definitely give this one a go!

------
Christine
Perth, Western Australia.

Nata
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Nata
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USA
Member since 8/20/02
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Date: 3/15/07 1:05 PM

Oooh, nice. And you got 2 rows of gathering stitches at once, too. I bet I could use that for setting in the sleeves with narrow coverstitch.

Thank you for sharing,
Natasha

------
Fabric bought in 2009: 30 yds
Fabrc sewn in 2009: 19 yds
Fabric stash: 145 yds

3 Garments IN and 6 Garments OUT

Donna H
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Donna H
WA USA
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In reply to purplebouquet


Date: 3/15/07 1:06 PM

Please, consider adding this to the TIP section.
Thank you.

------
The single most important discovery made by a group of women? The Empty Tomb!

http://www.donnahodgson.blogspot.com/

purplebouquet
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purplebouquet
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In reply to Donna H


Date: 3/20/07 11:26 AM

Quote: Donna H
Please, consider adding this to the TIP section.

Thank you.

Which TIP section? I thought this would be the appropriate category on the message board. Is there another section? Please enlighten me. Thank you.

Claudia
OP Gal
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OP Gal
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KS USA
Member since 10/14/03
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Date: 3/20/07 3:59 PM

At the bottom of the Home page on the left hand side, there's a section called "Sewing Tips and Techniques." This is included in the Daily Digest you can receive each day, so more people see the tip.

------
a/k/a Sondra

If I sewed any slower, I wouldn't be sewing at all. -- Kellie R.

Inge H
Inge H
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NETHERLANDS
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In reply to purplebouquet


Date: 1/30/11 3:39 PM

even years on you make even happier with her covermachine
hope you dont mind that i share this with my dutch forum??
i've linked back to this article ;)
otherwise pb me
superthanks !!!

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