Sewing Tips

Tips are just that; tips about how to do something new, or easier than a way that you already know. I am learning new things in making my German, so will try to post about them as I learn them. Most seamstresses already know what I am posting, sorry for boring you. But, if you are like me, and learning to sew period garments, I am hoping that my notes will help you, as they have me.

Here you will find information on sewing tips (as I, myself, learn them), information on Cutting on the Bias, Gores, French seams, as well as catridge pleats, box pleats & knife pleates.

1) Use sewing machine (or a serger, if you have one) and sew ZIG-ZAG stitching along the ends of material (where it was cut). This helps to prevent unraveling when washed.
2) PRE WASH all material before cutting out patterns. Use cold water. The dryer is what will help shrink/full material.
3) Heavy wool garments should NEVER be hung on a hanger. They can be folded and put into a drawer, or stored in a plastic “blanket” bag (like the ones that comforters come in).
4) Outer garments do not need washing after every wearing, but linen undergarments do.
5) Can use 3 oz. linen (napkin weight) for ALL chemises.
5.3 – 5.8 oz. linen for undergown, kirtles, tunics
7 oz. linen for cotehardies & surcoats
6) PRESS every seam after sewing. CLIP outside curves, NOTCH inside curves.
7) When using linen for lining, BUY the color linen you want to use. It is not worth the trouble to dye it, as you might not get the dark color you expect (I know from experience).

Posted on March 5, 2012
Cutting on the Bias

Believe it or not, I never knew how to cut on the bias; now I do.

Posted on March 6, 2012
French Seams

I never even heard of French seams before. Usually they
are used with sheer material & silks to prevent the edges from unraveling. I need to do more research to see if this type of seam treatment was actually used in our time period.

Posted on March 6, 2012

I have sewn gores in a couple of my underdresses, but appearently, I was sewing them “incorrectly”. (Most of my garments are 10-12 years old, and made out of the dreaded cotton, but I am learning.)

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