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Silly Question Maybe but I dont know
truckinsquirtle
truckinsquirtle
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Date: 1/10/13 12:11 PM

I've been reading the forums over the last few days, and keep seeing term called "serger", and yesterday I was at Fabricland (which I won't be going back to that location - they 'kept' an eye on me like I was going to steal something just because I'm younger than I guess their usual demograph) anyway, so I saw this Serger supply section. I asked one of the hovering woman what a Serger was, and she came back with "you're too young for this aren't you supposed to be in college and partying" believe it or not lol .. I'm 24 btw been sewing off and on since I was 8. So i'm not impressed .

So my question is what is a Serger, and what do you use it for?

JEF
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Date: 1/10/13 12:17 PM

A serger is a machine that sews/sergers - most commonly knits but can do other fabrics - and finishes the edge at the same time with threads that loop around the edge. If you're wearing a T-shirt look at the seams. They were almost certainly done with a serger.

Don't be put off by people who say you're too young. I wish I'd started at your age because I'd be better now!!! :)

HTH,
JEF

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"The trouble with quotes on the Internet is that you can never know if they are genuine." --Abraham Lincoln

STL Mom
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Date: 1/10/13 12:18 PM

It's not a silly question and I'm sorry that lady was rude to you. I'm sure someone else can explain this better, but you know how seams look on the inside of store-bought clothes, with the thread wrapped around the seam allowance to stop it from fraying? That's probably done on a serger. It's a machine that sews a seam and wraps thread around the seam allowance at the same time, usually using two needles and three or four threads at once. A serger usually also trims the seam allowance with a sharp blade. If you google "how to use a serger" you can watch a video. They can really speed up your sewing, if you don't count the time threading the darn machine (mine is tricky!)

Mufffet
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In reply to truckinsquirtle <<
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Date: 1/10/13 12:22 PM

My goodness, how rude and mean was that lady?! Good grief. Here are a couple threads here to give you the picture! Sergers do not use bobbins, and they make seams like you see on ready to wear clothing - with 3,4,5 or more threads.

Brother 1034D serger thread with pics

An entire part of the board for sergers and coverstitch machines:

Sergers & Coverstitch machines

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"Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible."
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I have sewing machines

westmoon
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In reply to truckinsquirtle <<


Date: 1/10/13 1:11 PM

Depending on where you live, you might also see it called an overlocker. That's the more common term here in the UK and I think also in Australia, although don't quote me on that.

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truckinsquirtle
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Date: 1/10/13 1:23 PM

is it similar to the stitch you see on blankets and robes? I've been trying to figure out how to do that.. my blanket has what looks like 3 seams and zig zag over top of the 3 straight ones.. I have been doing my hems by sewing machine and it has similar setting but not with a zig zag over top and everytime i try and duplicate it I end up jamming the machine or making horribly skew lines.

Maybe I should look into buying one of those. Looks like it would make the seam stronger than just doing one single one.

Then again I looked on craigslist up here, and they all want 400-900 so it'll have to wait till I have some extra cash flow.

And yes they were rude, but eh I don't let it get to me, I just don't buy from them again. They lost out was thinking of buying 2m of material but the attitude turned me off. My mom has a place out by where she lives she goes to a lot, so I'll try there next time I need supplies and feel like driving out there.

Thanks I think I understand now what it is.

CM_Sews
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Date: 1/10/13 1:27 PM

A helpful Pfaff saleslady once provided to me the best definition of what a serger does. A serger trims the seam allowance and knits the seam with 3, 4, or 5 threads (depending on how you've got the serger set up).

Think of a seam that is formed by knitting or crocheting and you have the general idea.

A serger works nicely for sewing knit fabrics, but it will also give you a sturdy finished seam on wovens.

CMC

DonnaH
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In reply to truckinsquirtle <<


Date: 1/10/13 1:39 PM

Not sure where you are located, but the Brother 1034D is an inexpensive, but good choice. I only have a mechanical sewing machine, but keep thinking I need to buy a 1034D. I think it's <$200 on Amazon and Walmart.com.

I didn't know what a serger was until I was about your age - and I started sewing at about 8, too. I only learned about the serger because I was working/volunteering at a community college costume shop. They showed me what it was and then had me use it. I also had the opportunity to use an industrial sewing machine there. The industrial machine was scarier, lol.

If you have a machine dealer (possibly at a quilting shop) near you, you might be able to try one out. Any kind of sewing machine dealer, even JoAnn's has a few models out for display - and they are meant for prospective customers to try them out.

sewinglady4u
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In reply to truckinsquirtle <<


Date: 1/11/13 7:56 AM

From the stitching you're describing here, it sounds like you're looking for a coverstitch machine. Which is a different beast than a serger. :)

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Consew 7360R, Singer 14U overlock, Necchi 521, Pfaff 900, US Blind Stitch 718-2, Singer New Family 12K treadle

ShantiSeamstressing
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Date: 1/11/13 10:03 AM

Some sewing machines will have an overcasting foot and a stitch to select that (sort of) imitates a serged seam edge. It is, at any rate, neat and won't unravel. That is one possibility. People sewed for years before sergers were available at all, or available to the home sewist. So it can be done. But of course the serged edge is far more professional and much faster to achieve with a serger than a sewing machine.

P.S. By the way, 24 is not at all too young to sew and what was said was ludicrous as well as being out of line. With all the children's sewing project books and sites available, and kids at 6, 7, 8 getting into sewing, nope, 24 isn't too young by far.

Enjoy!!!
-- Edited on 1/11/13 10:06 AM --

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