Tuesday, April 20, 2010

The Perfect Seam

Keeping a perfectly straight seam is important to our final sewing results. I learned a long time ago to stop watching the needle. If you keep you eye on the needle, your final seam allowance will be off. If your machine has a graduated (numbered) plate, keep your eye on the measure you need or use a seam guide.

Seam guides
To be effective, the guide can not move. If it has any wobble to it your seam will be off. Just a little bit can make a final difference. I use a long magnetic for much of my sewing. I place it for the correct seam and it is long enough to keep a perfectly straight, even seam. When finished, I pull it off.

For a perfect 5/8" seam, place the tape measure sideways. Most of the 60" measures are a perfect 5/8" in size. Mark the spot! Then stitch out a straight seam and re-measure to make sure.

Seam guides come in every shape and type. There are magnetic, screw on, and even adhesive.

Don't have a seam guide?
  • Use painters tape. Use your tape measure and measure over, placing the edge of the tape where you need it.
  • Use a rubber band. If your machine is a free arm put the rubber band around the arm.
  • Place a sticky note where you need it. Want a higher guide? Stack up the sticky notes!
  • Cut apart an old tape measure and tape down (take off the metal end).
However you mark it, keep your eye off the needle!

Happy Stitchery!


Sandra said...

So a tape measure is 5/8 inches? Who knew? Thanks for the tidbit!

Charlene said...

The smallest things are fascinating to me! I found the 120 inch quilters tape measure is 1 inch.