I’m no expert when it comes to sewing but here are some tips I’ve picked up from around internet-land which have helped me when sewing with silk. Just because you’re a beginner it doesn’t mean you need to pass some sort of sewing test to be allowed to sew “fancy fabrics”. I started off by making knickers using old silk shirts from jumble sales to practice before risking any more expensive fabric.
As with all sewing it’s all about practice practice practice. Go slow when cutting and sewing.
- Pin pattern pieces with silk pins and use pattern weights
2. Pin within the seam allowance.
3. If any pattern pieces need interfacing apply the stabilizer before cutting.
4. lots of people use spray starch to stiffen fabric that misbehaving. I prefer not to use it but sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do!
5. Use a layer of tracing paper or an old dress pattern between the Fabric layers or cut one layer at a time.
6. Be super careful with fabric marker pens test the fabric first. I use tailor tacks within the seam allowance.
7. For pattern pieces cut on the fold re-trace the piece and make it into 1 whole piece.
8. Use a rotary cutter
9. Have a fiddle with your machine tension it’s likely you’ll have to make an adjustment.
10. Stay stitch necklines they will stretch out.
11. With a good sharp fine needle I hand baste my pattern pieces as it minimizes the risk of pins distorting the fabric and it moving about too much when machine sewing the seams.
12. Use a sharp fine machine needle a 60 or 70 sharp will do the job.
13. If you have a straight stitch plate use it it’ll help to stop fine fabrics being sucked into the feed dogs.
14. I’m rubbish with a rolled hem foot so I use wash away double sided Wondertape to make a easy to manage hem. It’s not quite as narrow but Ieast least I haven’t ruined my garment.
15. Use a dry iron to press, you don’t want any watermarks.
16. Seam finishing. Get the hang of french seams you’ll feel pretty smug when you do.
A three step zigzag is also a good option as its less likely to pucker and get sucked into the machine. Have a practice first. Pinking shears are also an option if your scared of messing it up. A three thread overlock will work but may add a little more bulk.
There are loads of great tips out there. I hope this helps.
Fiona blogs at https://coolarama.wordpress.com/