When sewing gets sticky - problem solvers




Yes, weirdly there are times when a needle and thread won't cut it on their own. I thought a sewing machine was all I would be needing when I started dressmaking....and then I discovered fabrics didn't always behave themselves! Here's a few of my 'get out of jail' finds that have made life a lot easier for me. If you've got some add them in the comments...the more advice the better!
When I took Tilly and the Buttons' online class for learning to sew knit fabrics on a regular sewing machine, I came across Wonder Tape. It's a narrow double sided tape that washes away (you can find it for between £5-£10 online). Tilly recommended it for securing the bottom hem on knit fabrics before stitching and it made the Agnes top a whole lot more achievable! I use Wonder Tape to secure hems on knit fabrics and on slippery chiffons too now. All those fabrics that won't press find themselves being taped into good behaviour in my sewing room.

My other find - one from early on in my sewing adventures - was another use for interfacing. This one isn't my proudest, but has helped me save a project from the brink of disaster. After almost finishing my kimono top, I was reducing seams and managed to cut through one of the bodice panels. I was completely disheartened, and as a last ditch effort used a scrap of interfacing on the back to hold the snipped parts together again. Good as new! My friends have also used this to patch up some of their ready to wear clothes after damage from the washing machine. I'm sure lots of you will think it's terrible and lazy, but it worked for this beginner.

The sewing advice site Stitch and Sew also has a lot of tips on when to use adhesives in sewing....Sally from Stitch and Sew was kind enough to write a helpful summary for this post too:

Top tip: add a tube of fabric glue to your sewing box! In the past, sewers may well have shunned the idea of using glue - traditionally a quick-fix cheat for the non-sewer; but fabric glues have since developed to become an indispensable aid to any seamstress, no longer confined to the sole use of children’s craft projects.

Visit your local haberdashery shop and you’ll discover an array of fabric glues available. Some can be applied to fabrics that require washing; conversely, others are designed to be washed out straight away. You’ll also find squeezy bottles of glue available for a precise application and spray bottles for use on large fabric pieces. And if you’re wondering how these different glues can be of use to the everyday sewer, here are a few eye-opening ideas.
·         Use wash-out glue as a quick alternative to tacking and pinning
·         Use it to aid placement of fabric in applique designs
·         Use washable glue for easy repairs
Read this insightful article for more valuable suggestions and helpful guidance on when to stick and when to sew.

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Hi, I'm Laura. Welcome to my journeys with modern, feminine dressmaking; pattern reviews, tips and guides for beginners. I'm a lifelong foodie, so you'll also find some delicious recipes and places to get that foodie fix.
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