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Forum > Sewing Techniques and Tips > How do you topstitch knits? ( Moderated by MissCelie)

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How do you topstitch knits?
robin623
robin623
Member since 6/7/12
Posts: 5
Skill: Intermediate
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Date: 8/14/12 5:24 AM

I know many of you coverstitch. I don't have a desire to buy or use one.

A single straight stitch always looks best for me and I've never had a problem with it breaking. Maybe it's because I make my neck openings big enough so they don't need to stretch much. I feel like it's not professional though so I don't know if I should sell anything like that. That's why I use RTW shirts in my outfits but I want to start creating and selling with some of my cute knit print stash. My double stretch needle never looks good. I don't know what I'm doing wrong but I get that puckering between the stitches. Sometimes I don't topstitch at all which looks fine as long as it's ironed. I tried doing a zig zag tonight and it looks okay. I can't get any topstitching to work on stretchy baby nay or baby lulu. Even some I have that were coverstitched get all stretched out.

.Tip, ideas? What do you do (besides coverstitch)?
-- Edited on 8/14/12 5:27 AM --

Melody
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Melody
Michigan USA
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Date: 8/14/12 8:30 AM

I suggest using stabilizer. It works wonders.

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Melody

Ugh, really?

juliette2
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juliette2
International AUSTRALIA
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Date: 8/14/12 9:00 AM

I zigzag.

I am never happy with the results I get with a twin needle. It usually tunnels and the bobbin thread eventually breaks if the fabric is stretchy, then the stitching comes undone.

I even have a coverstitcher but find it more trouble than it is worth. Difficult to thread, difficult to stitch accurately on the edge... I know many people love their coverstitchers but it's a bit too fiddley for me.

Zigzagging is best for me. It looks OK -- some RTW garments have zigzag stitching and most people don't sew and don't have a clue about hem finishes anyway.

Keep it simple: that's my motto!

------
It's a custom-made designer original. I made it myself.

fabrictherapy
fabrictherapy  Friend of PR
Georgia USA
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Date: 8/14/12 9:45 AM

If I use my sewing machine, using a walking foot helps with even feed with double needles on knits, the stablizer is also a big help.

Courtney Ostaff
Courtney Ostaff
West Virginia USA
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Date: 8/14/12 10:50 AM

Steam-a-Seam is your friend ;)
Also, have you seen Sarah Veblen's binding video?

mastdenman
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mastdenman  Friend of PR
California USA
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Date: 8/14/12 11:15 AM

I use the triple stretch stitch that is available on most machines. It looks nice and has a bit of stretch. Works fairly well with most knits.

------
Marilyn

January 2009 to January 2010 81 yards out and 71yards in January 2010 to the present 106.7 yards out and 146.5 yards in. January 2011 to the present: 47 yards out and 69 yards in.

LynnRowe
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LynnRowe  Friend of PR
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In reply to robin623 <<
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Date: 8/14/12 11:37 AM

Press and baste first. Same with twin needle top-stitching; pressing and basting first eliminates the drag lines and stretching.

------
I heart Woo (HimmyCat). Until we meet again, my beautiful little boy. I love you.

Patti B
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Patti B  Friend of PR
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Date: 8/14/12 12:10 PM

I often use my Teflon foot because it doesn't seem to gather up fabric on very stretchy knits. Lightweight fusible interfacing is a godsend for top stitching knits.

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Patti

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

Cuffs
Cuffs
Ohio USA
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Date: 8/14/12 3:49 PM

To prevent channeling with a twin needle, loosen the bobbin tension.

I'll second the stabilizer idea for preventing rippling, especially sewing cross-grain on a very stretchy knit. That said, I'd tried many that were supposed to do the trick... but didn't.

cocosloft
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cocosloft  Friend of PR
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Date: 8/15/12 10:06 AM

I'm with LynnRowe - I press and baste first. If it's a hem, I zigzag then turn up and use steam a seam before topstitching. Also loosen my upper thread tension. Every piece of fabric is different...so I practice on scraps until I'm happy with settings and so on. Keep at it!

------
Coco

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