Today I've started on the next batch of gowns - this time using a nice 38 mm ("heavy") silk crêpe.
I have used this fabric before, and have had the same experience before, too. Or - is it just something I am imagining?
One of the pieces looks approximately like this:
After cutting, I serge all the sides.
After serging, I sew the pieces together - and... I think the serging direction is of importance. Or am I just imagining things?
The warp direction is marked in blue. It is the same in all pieces.
There are two possible ways to do the serging - either from to top bottom (green), or from bottom to top (red).
I think that serging from bottom to top (red) stretches the bias, so it becomes longer than if I do the serging from top to bottom (green). The bias angle remains the same...
Or - am I just imagining things?
The difference is not bigger than it could be from the inaccuracies in the cutting... or?
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Books on sewing recommend sewing seams on bias cut fabric in the direction of your green arrow. I don't recall the reason given but stretching is an issue when sewing bias cuts. Although serging is technically not a seam, I would imagine that the same advice would apply. Have you ever noticed that the stitching arrows given on patterns (like Vogue patterns, Simplicity etc) for A-line skirts show the stitching going from the top to the hem? Also for attaching collars to the neck opening - the 'experts' say to stitch from the center of the collar to the end.
So - no you are not imagining things.
Sorry - this is probably more than you wanted to know - I just find it interesting.
Thank you - I'm glad to hear it is not "just me"!
Hello Kerstin! I am visiting your blog to learn more about horsehair weaving. I have emailed you a few questions. I find that I am able to offer you and answer to this question. I am a patternmaker in the garment industry, my specialty is eveningwear. I have extensive experience w silk crepe. You are correct to sew in the direction of the red arrow. The general rule is to begin at the wide point of a piece and stitch toward the narrow. In this way you will be stitching WITH the grain of the cut edge and not against it. You can control the stretching of the edge by passing a single line of stitching 1/8" away from the edge, it will be covered by the serging. If you find that the single stitch is stretching the edge, please go to my blog to see photos of how to thread your machine so that the stitching will hold in the edge. This threading will increase the upper thread tension without adjusting your machine dials. http://msthimble.wordpress.com/2010/04/18/sewing-machine-threading-for-kerstin/
REMEMBER to return your threading to the normal thread path when you finish making your automatic ease stitch!
Thank you for the tip! I will try it later... 'cos at the moment I'm sewing velvet. Slowly, and with concentration.
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