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sewing garment seams with a serger



 
 
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  #1  
Old March 30th 04, 09:05 PM
Ann Pillman
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Default sewing garment seams with a serger

Hi everyone,

I just acquired a serger... and I'm not sure how to get the correct seam
allowence (5/8") when sewing garments. What I've been doing for the
current project is to sew the actual 5/8" seam on my regular sewing
machine and then finish the seam with the serger. Is that what everyone
else does?? (this seems "overkill" to me, that's why you have the
serger, so you don't HAVE to sew a seam twice...)

I've sewed some scraps on my serger trying to figure out exactly where
the seam is going to be but it seems as though I have to just eye-ball
the 5/8"...

Any ideas or tips?

Thanks!
--Ann
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  #2  
Old March 30th 04, 09:22 PM
Jenn Ridley
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Ann Pillman wrote:

Hi everyone,

I just acquired a serger... and I'm not sure how to get the correct seam
allowence (5/8") when sewing garments.
...


Any ideas or tips?


On most sergers that I've seen there is a seam guide on the front of
the machine. It's not on the top of the arm (where it would be hidden
by the knife guard), but down on the front, so you can see it while
you're sewing.

You could make your own, if yours doesn't have one. Measure out 5/8"
from the left needle and make a mark. That's your 5/8" allowance.

jenn

--
Jenn Ridley

  #3  
Old March 30th 04, 09:39 PM
William Morris
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A piece of tape on the machine case to the right of the blade where you can
mark 5/8" would show you where to let the edge of your fabric ride.

- Wm

--
William Morris
Semster, Seamlyne reProductions
Visit our website, http://www.seamlyne.com, for the most comfortable
historically inspired clothing you can buy!

"Ann Pillman" wrote in message
...
Hi everyone,

I just acquired a serger... and I'm not sure how to get the correct seam
allowence (5/8") when sewing garments. What I've been doing for the
current project is to sew the actual 5/8" seam on my regular sewing
machine and then finish the seam with the serger. Is that what everyone
else does?? (this seems "overkill" to me, that's why you have the
serger, so you don't HAVE to sew a seam twice...)

I've sewed some scraps on my serger trying to figure out exactly where
the seam is going to be but it seems as though I have to just eye-ball
the 5/8"...

Any ideas or tips?

Thanks!
--Ann



  #4  
Old March 30th 04, 10:39 PM
Sarah Dale
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Default

Ann Pillman wrote:
I just acquired a serger... and I'm not sure how to get the correct seam
allowence (5/8") when sewing garments. What I've been doing for the
current project is to sew the actual 5/8" seam on my regular sewing
machine and then finish the seam with the serger. Is that what everyone
else does?? (this seems "overkill" to me, that's why you have the
serger, so you don't HAVE to sew a seam twice...)


Hi Ann,

I got my first serger last summer - I know *exactly* where you are comming
from!!! You don't have to do it twice - especially if you have a 4 thread
machine.

I've sewed some scraps on my serger trying to figure out exactly where
the seam is going to be but it seems as though I have to just eye-ball
the 5/8"...


I also asked this question last summer after some very wonky test seams!
I must admit, that this does take practice - and this is a difficult task
compared to sewing a 5/8th seam with a sewing machine.

There are two things to look for. Firstly, look at the end of the presser
foot - you should see 2 marks on it - the left hand (centre) mark is the
position of the left needle, the mark to the right is the position of the
left needle. Secondly - on your machine to the right of the foot - possibly
on the flip lid that covers the threading paths - should be some seam width
markings. I have 3/8, 5/8 etc. etc.

Now on some test material draw yourself a 5/8th inch seam allowance.
Position it under you foot so that the line aligns with the left (centre)
mark on the foot. Serge an inch or two - now the edge of the fabric should
be on the 5/8th inch mark on seam width marking. I found this difficult to
start with because you can't line up presicely like you can on a sewing
machine, but with practice you can get good

One other thing to look out for, my seam markings are on the flip out cover
for the threading paths, I find that as I adjust the cutting width on my
serger, it very slightly affects the position of that cover - and
consequently the seam markings are not always quite right. So do watch out
for that one!

It may also pay you to measure from your left needle the 5/8th allowance,
and put yourself a nice large seam width allowance mark - using
electricians tape, stickits, elastic band or whatever works for you - if
you can extend the mark forward of the blades, it will make lining up much
easier - now why the heck haven't I tried that yet!?!? (because I've only
just thought of it!) (and on mine the flip lid would get in the way).

Have fun with your new tool - don't serge any pins or your fingers!

HTH, Sarah
  #5  
Old March 30th 04, 11:47 PM
[email protected]
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Default


sewing garment seams with a serger

(Ann=A0Pillman)
I just acquired a serger... and I'm not sure how to get the correct seam
allowence (5/8") when sewing garments. What I've been doing for the
current project is to sew the actual 5/8" seam on my regular sewing
machine and then finish the seam with the serger. Is that what everyone
else does?? (this seems "overkill" to me, that's why you have the
serger, so you don't HAVE to sew a seam twice...)
I've sewed some scraps on my serger trying to figure out exactly where
the seam is going to be but it seems as though I have to just eye-ball
the 5/8"...
---
When all of the other recommendations fail, ge some 5/8 inch paper
tape, stick on the fabric, just in front of the cuting blade, moving it
towards you along the edge of the garment as you sew. Don't sew over it,
you'll dull your cutting blades. After a while, you should be bale to
eyeball a 5/8 inch seam and get it right.
Cea

  #6  
Old March 31st 04, 12:22 AM
Ann Pillman
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Thanks everyone for your tips and suggestions!

Much appreciated.
--Ann
  #7  
Old March 31st 04, 01:05 AM
Penny S
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Ann Pillman wrote:
Thanks everyone for your tips and suggestions!

Much appreciated.
--Ann


maybe I"m missing the obvious but if you are serging knits you don't ever
need an additional seam. For quick projects without planned longevity I
wouldnt' bother either with an extra straight stitch seam.

I eyeball the amount to trim, myself...

penny s


  #8  
Old March 31st 04, 04:42 AM
Kay Lancaster
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On Tue, 30 Mar 2004 20:05:47 GMT, Ann Pillman wrote:
I just acquired a serger... and I'm not sure how to get the correct seam


Oh good! Playtime! New sergers are always fun.

A couple of things to try, if your serger tends to obscure the 5/8" mark --

1) Make a little cardboard flap with a pointer, and tape it to your machine
above the bed, where the pointer can come down at 5/8", right next to the
knives. After a bit, you probably won't need the pointer.

2) Consider reducing your seam allowance to 3/8" and learn to watch
the width being trimmed. With a little practice, I think you'll find
it easy to "eyeball" trimming off the exact amount you need to. (narrow
trimmings are easier to gauge than wider ones, and this also gets you
used to watching the knife area as well as the needles.) Bonus: 3/8"
seam allowances can save considerable fabric in layouts sometimes.
  #9  
Old March 31st 04, 09:07 AM
Kate Dicey
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Penny S wrote:

Ann Pillman wrote:
Thanks everyone for your tips and suggestions!

Much appreciated.
--Ann


maybe I"m missing the obvious but if you are serging knits you don't ever
need an additional seam. For quick projects without planned longevity I
wouldnt' bother either with an extra straight stitch seam.

I eyeball the amount to trim, myself...

penny s



Same here, but that's practice... With a lot of knits I cut the seam
allowance narrower than 5/8" anyway. KwickSew patterns often only have
1/4" seam allowances.
--
Kate XXXXXX
Lady Catherine, Wardrobe Mistress of the Chocolate Buttons
http://www.diceyhome.free-online.co.uk
Click on Kate's Pages and explore!
 




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