Sewing Basics

Now you can learn some of the basic foundations of sewing techniques and how to perform various tasks while sewing.

Sewing can be done by hand or by using a machine. Obviously, machine sewing will be faster and it also will usually result in a stronger seam. However, there are many applications or situations where hand sewing is more appropriate. Hand sewing can also produce a finer detail in your design.

I can not give detailed information about how to use a sewing machine because each model has its own setup and instructions for use. Refer to the manual which came with your sewing machine if you have questions about how to operate it. If there is something that still does not make sense, you are welcome to send me an email and I can try to help you figure it out.

Seams and Seam Allowances

A seam exists wherever two or more pieces of fabric are joined together. When cutting pieces of fabric, they must be cut slightly larger to accommodate the seam. This extra fabric is called the seam allowance.

All sewing patterns will tell you the size of the seam allowance used. Most clothing patterns, for example, use a 5/8 inch seam allowance. This means that when sewing two pieces together, the stitching line should be 5/8 of an inch from the cut edge of the fabric. Most quilting designs use a 1/4 inch seam allowance.

There are exceptions to these general rules, but the pattern or design instructions will tell you what seam allowance to use.

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