vendredi 13 août 2010

Question from the neophite seamstress: How do you prepare and cut your fabric ?

A few weeks ago, my friend Marysol and I had a nice little "cutting workshop" together. It was interesting because we were able to compare two different ways to go about preparing and cutting our pieces.

Marysol is finishing her first year at design school here in Vancouver, and she was taught to add seam allowance on the paper pattern (whenever it's missing), then pin the pattern on the fabric and cut along the edges of it. For all markings (darts, etc...) she clips the seam allowance were needed. Obviously this is much faster than the way I was taught:

I don't add the seam allowance to the pattern, instead I trace the seam line on the fabric, then I trace a "cutting line" around at a consistant width and the space between the two is my seam allowance. For the seam line I trace on one side of the fabric then once I've cut the piece I use carbon paper and my tracing wheel to do the other side and any "inside" markings (darts, pleats, etc...). I have only sewn Burda patterns so far, which don't include seam allowances. I guess for any other pattern I would just use the carbon and wheel on both sides to trace the sewing line and I wouldn't trace the "cutting" line, just cut around the edges of the pattern.

This method is as a I said a much longer process, and you want to be sure to use chalk or erasable ink that will easily disappear once your finished.
Though it's definitely time-consuming, I prefer this method (for now anyway) because I feel it allows me to be more accurate, and keeps me from making mistakes. I feel better having an actual line to follow when I sew than having to worry about my allowance being consistent while the pieces go through the machine.

But I am curious to know what you guys do. Do you feel comfortable enough that you don't need an actual marked line to sew, and just sew by the correct seam allowance width, or do you take the time to do all the tracing. It might just be a matter of experience and probably the more experienced seamstresses out there don't bother with all that marking...
And as an additional question: what do you use for markings : chalk, ink, pencil ? What's the best solution you've found for markings that last while you sew, but go away easily once you're finished ?

1 commentaire:

  1. I learned how to sew from my mother. For the sewing itself, I don't make any markings on the fabric. I use the machine's markings. It's a bit easier to stay consistent by looking slightly 'ahead' of where you're going to sew--slightly below the presser foot, rather than exactly at the point where the needle enters the fabric. That way you can keep it under control as you feed the fabric under the presser foot, rather than panic about the sewing line being too far off. (Plus a seam allowance that goes slightly off from the exact measurement isn't usually enough to ruin a garment.)

    As for marking darts, etc., I often use the disappearing ink/mark-b-gone marker. I've read a few complaints about the marks not going away even after washing, but I've never had that problem. Since the marker is medium blue and purple, with dark fabrics, I use a white pencil.

    If you want to try the marker, you could always make a small mark and wash it to see if it does rinse away like it should.