Learning how to stitch thread in a sewing project can be difficult, but if you have a sewing machine at your disposal, you’re already a step ahead. Though sewing by hand can become second nature with some practice, you can tackle much more advanced projects with a lower barrier to entry with a sewing machine.
Once you have your sewing machine set up, it’s time to learn about some of the most common stitches you’ll use with sewing machine projects.
This is one of the most standard types of sewing machine stitches. Begin a straight stitch between 1/8 and 3/8 inch away from the fabric’s edge. Backstitch the previous forward stitch over the basted or pinned seam and repeat the original stitch direction to finish.
Since buttonholes are a more advanced seam to make, check your sewing machine owner’s manual to find the buttonhole setting on your machine to guide you. You’ll likely need a special foot attachment to create a buttonhole.
Zigzag stitches are a great way to finish a raw edge cleanly. Set your sewing machine to a zigzag stitch setting and input your ideal length and width.
A blind hem stitch is made up of approximately two straight stitches followed by a single wide zigzag stitch. This stitch can also be performed freehand, and in both settings, the fabric should be folded under with just the hem edge sticking out.
Once you’ve finished your stitch, you should ensure that it’s firmly in place and looking smooth with a seam finisher.
Fold the seam, press it with a 1/4 inch give, and straight stitch along the fabric’s folded edge.
After the stitch has been sewn, press it open and make a zigzag stitch along the raw edge. Then, trim off any excess thread.
Take a 5/8 inch piece of bias tape, enclose the raw edge of your stitch, and stitch right through the layers. This works well for skirts and jackets that are unlined.
Topstitches are best for decorative finishes or to make a seam stronger. Press the seams of your stitch open and stitch the seam in place from the underside.
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