Sew to Speak

I thought I'd do a quick post today about some sewing terms that may be completely baffling to a total novice that has just started sewing. Obviously this list could go on forever but here's a little glossary for your interest!

Basting - no turkey involved. This is where you temporarily sew something together with massive stitches that can easily be removed later

Bias Binding - 'bias' meaning diagonal to the weave of the fabric. Cutting something on the bias means it will be diagonal to the grain of the fabric and have a slight stretch to it. Bias binding is a huge strip of fabric, cut on the bias, which is folded inwards allowing you to make nice neat edges on garments. The fact it is on the bias means it will go around curves like armholes and necklines. Great for when you want no fuss neat edges with minimal stitching showing or a contrasting colour. You can buy it ready made or make your own. MinervaCrafts sell some great ones - Lycra and stretch binding for jersey dresses etc in crazy colours, satin and plain cotton binding too.
Bias binding
 Dart - In a pattern it looks like a wedge shape. When sewn together it shapes fabric, so flat fabric turns into a curvy shape to fit a human being.

Facing - a piece of fabric, that is identical shape to the main garment used to strengthen a particular area or create a neat edge such as at a neckline or armhole. Its sewn to the fabric, right sides of the fabric facing together and then turned inwards to created a seamless edge. Tilly and the Buttons has a good explanation here.

Interfacing - a material which is either sewn on or ironed onto the wrong side of your fabric to make it thicker or sturdier. You might want to make a purse or bag and need thickness and strength; super heavy interfacing is your friend. You also find it in collars and waistbands.

Muslin/Toile - a mock up of a garment. Like a dress rehearsal for a real bit of clothing except you can tear it apart and refit it as many times as you like in order to get the pattern pieces just right.

Notions - occasionally of grandeur but mainly 'bits and bobs'. It's all your tools and equipment for sewing; seam ripper, buttons, clasps, zips, pins etc....Stuff.

Right side - The correct side of your fabric. The good side. The one you want the world to see.

Seam Ripper -  Essential. A gadget of joy and doom. It can fix your errors and take things apart without damaging them, but it does mean you're having to take things apart. Awkward.
Seam Ripper

Stash - A massive hoard of fabric that you have because, well you needed it, it was pretty, its just nice having it there for 'one day'. Please note that your fabric stash will no doubt get out of hand if you start sewing. Go with it, there are worse addictions in the world. Organise it all you want, it will never be neat.

Wrong side - the other one. The rough unseen side. Not always rough, sometimes very pretty but its glory will be hidden from view for the best part.

UFO - Less other worldly and more annoying. Unfinished Objects. Everything you started and couldn't be arsed to finish. Of course you will finish day.

No comments:

Post a Comment