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Forum > Beginner's Forum > Water Soluble Stabilizer ( Moderated by EleanorSews)

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Water Soluble Stabilizer
to use with knits (not embroidery)
rfsews
rfsews
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Date: 12/31/12 0:27 AM

Hello!

I have had problems with fabrics moving when sewing some knits (e.g., rayon jersey!). So far, I'm getting by that problem by using tissue paper underneath the fabrics. However, I always have to spend time picking out the tissue paper pieces afterwards. An option suggested by a PR member is to use water soluble stabilizer, and Im more than willing to give that a try since I just picked away the last of my patience on tissue bits.

I've not had to use a stabilizer before so I'm not sure what to look for. I checked my local Joanns, which carries Sulky Super Solvy, Sulky Ultra Solvy, and Pellon Sol-U-Film Lite. Would any of those be good for my purpose? Or is there another brand/type I should try?

Thank you!

beauturbo
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In reply to rfsews <<


Date: 12/31/12 1:22 PM

I don't think it would really matter if you just wanted to stick some on a knit on occasion. I guess if you wanted to be able to see through it, get clear. But, I can't imagine getting all that stabilizer and cutting into strips, and really having to be sewing every seam in every knit garment with stabilizer in it, that seems like kind of the very hard and complicated and maybe even unusual way to sew on knits to me.

What exactly do you mean by problems with fabric moving?

kkkkaty
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kkkkaty  Friend of PR
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Date: 12/31/12 1:40 PM

I thought you are actually supposed to leave the stabilizer in with knits; there is a product called something like "tender touch" which is a very gentle (on the skin) cutaway stabilizer. You would hoop that, spray some temp adhesive spray on the stabilizer, pat the knit into place, and embroider.

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-- Edited on 12/31/12 1:43 PM --

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rfsews
rfsews
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Date: 12/31/12 2:11 PM

The problem I had was described here. Basically, I think the feed dogs on both of my machines cannot grip on to the knit fabric, so the fabric doesn't "move".

Currently, I'm only using tissue paper at the start and end of serging a seam, because once my serger can grip on to the fabric to start, it serges the rest fine. Serging in the round (for example, a neckline) doesn't have the same issue. I also use tissue paper at the end of the seam because the fabric tend to veer off the cutting/serging. So I would think I only need to use the stabilizer at the beginning and the end (like I currently do with tissues).

PattyE
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PattyE  Friend of PR
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Date: 12/31/12 2:54 PM

I can't imagine why knits are giving your machine such a hard time...how frustrating. Something just doesn't seem right.
Two suggestions I have are 1 - having your feed dogs checked to see if they are 'dulled' and 2 - using a walking foot.
I hope you can solve the issue because knits are so great to use.

beauturbo
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In reply to rfsews <<
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Date: 12/31/12 3:28 PM

O.K., I did read it, and sounds like does not happen to you with all knits, sewing machine and serger, (which I thought you really did mean at first) but just on one particular icky to sew on, very thin and slippery rayon knit.

In that case. of all those wash a way kind of stabilizers to try as a little "starter scrap" just to start sewing on at the beginning, I would try a see though, clear kind of one first. And which ever one was more rough and gridded feeling on one side of it, and not real slick and slippery on both sides. Advantages of clear there, is most times you don't even need to get it wet, as in washing it, to make it go away later, you might be able to even just run a damp q-tip over afterwards, and that might release it?


If you use the non see through, looks more like pressed. laid or woven white cloth kind, it's not going to come out all that easy, and you would probably have to also rub and manipulate it afterwards, while wet a lot, to even make it disolve, or just soak it a whole bunch.

Sounds like maybe your fabric is really trying to get sucked down the stitch plate hole when you start to sew on it, each and every
time too. Even though not starting to sew on the very edge of it on a sewing machine might be a good idea (start like more an inch in, then back up a bit, then continue forwards and while holding thread tails each time) do you know (and forgive me if you already know this) when overlocking/serging instead, you are not even supposed to start on the free edge of the fabric at all?

Instead you want to chain off with no fabric at all under the pressure foot for a while ( a while is enough inches of it, to have something to hold onto) then stick fabric in front of pressure foot and let machine grab and pull it though. And while you are holding that previously formed chain, hanging out the back there, you can apply a little taut tension to it, to help the fabric get started? If for some reason not even doing it that way, try that too.

Just realized you have an Evolve overlocker. I do have one too. I think mine could sew on that stuff O.K. (but that is only with me not having your exact fabric also) and I don't think I would even need a starter scrap.

I would probably really need to hold onto my thread tails too though and maybe with some tension on that. Also if I felt it was trying to get sucked down needle plate hole, and since my choices there would be either a size 12 or size 14 needles, I would go with the smaller size 12 ones for sure, and a brand new Schmetz system EL 705 kind of one, would be my choice, just because good for knits or wovens, and then if wanting to switch out to cover stitch on it later, I would not even have to change out the needle at all. Also if you feel it does not start out well, and if serging along with maybe 3 or 4 thread overlock, I would not make my stitches all that short and go for a longer stitch length instead. Just because feed dogs move more then, so you would be "covering more ground" in less time, right when you start out serging there. You could try some of that stuff.

-- Edited on 12/31/12 3:55 PM --

Skittl1321
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Skittl1321
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Date: 12/31/12 4:21 PM

I think you would want the Fabri-Solvy. The clear stuff is really flimsy and I think the feed dogs would tear it.

simplystitches
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Date: 12/31/12 9:33 PM

Before I got my coverstitch I tried it to stabilize a hem on a knit that was really stretchy and wanted to ripple really bad when I stitched it. My machine, Babylock Ellure Plus, using a walking foot hated it! It was sticking to the needle plate and I ended up w/a hem that was worse than without it!

If you decide to try it buy a small package unless you can use it somewhere else.

Debbie

PattiAnnJ
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PattiAnnJ
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In reply to rfsews <<
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Date: 12/31/12 9:57 PM

I have use wash away stabilizer when working with a decorative stitch.

Try the Pellon as it sounds as though it would be the thinnest. That way if one layer is not enough you can add more, but you can't take away from the thicker product.

There are other brands, but you would have to check with a sewing machine dealer or order online.

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"Improvise, adapt and overcome." - Clint Eastwood/Heartbreak Ridge

SandiMacD
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SandiMacD  Friend of PR
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Date: 1/1/13 6:11 AM

I just got a package of some sort of bias fusible or perhaps sticky. It comes on a roll and is meant to control seams on difficult knots. You pretty much use it to stick between the seams that are giving you problems and it holds the fabric in place. It's supposed to wash out. I haven't tried it yet.
Other things I have done using a sewing machine is to use lots of pins and go very slow checking underneath often. I use a longer stitch in case I have to rip out a section. Once perfect I can then sew with a smaller length or serge. If you serge you need to follow your stitch line or be inside because if you are outside it, the fabric could catch again.
But I generally always just serge first and got that skinny tape to hold beginning and ends in place.
Edited to add:
Beauturbo- excellent tips in your reply. I am going to use them- have an Evolution and see how it works for me. Can't wait.
-- Edited on 1/1/13 6:22 AM --

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