Friday, January 20, 2012

Friday Confession



Remember when I was making all those wine and casserole totes for my friends a few weeks ago?  I did them assembly-line style, and I tried this "quick sewing technique."  Instead of stitching each seam independently (and trimming the threads, etc. before moving on to the next piece), I just kept feeding the next piece under the machine foot as soon as the previous piece was clear.  

It worked really well for things like doing all 18 handles - 18 versions of the same pattern piece.  This was a time when I didn't have to think about the next seam, because they were all the same.  

I'm not as convinced that it would work well for assembling a single garment - where you rarely sew the same seam more than twice (2 sleeves, 2 shoulder seams, 2 side seams, etc.).

So, how about you?  Do you sew like this?  If so, when - on lots of projects, or mostly just when you are sewing multiple copies of the same pattern pieces?  If not, why not?  Any suggestions or recommendations?  Any other "speed sewing" techniques you can recommend?  

14 comments:

Claire (aka Seemane) said...

Chain-stitching ;)! It's my new favourite thing - it's easy to do helps stop fabric getting eaten up by the feed-dogs when you start or backstitch at the start of a seam. And.. it saves thread - think of all those long straggly tails you're NOT cutting off at the start/ends of pieces :)

BConky said...

I have often sewn like that. I had five children and now have nice grandkids so I'm often making more than one of a pattern. I made nine sets of Grinch PJ's for them for Christmas and did much of it assembly line. It works great for me.

draculash said...

Well if I am doing more than one copy of the project, I do tend to sew each seam on all copies in one go. But that happens rarely.

Sew Ducky said...

I don't. Sewing is one of the few things in my life I am really anal about and each seam has to be perfect...so it messes with my OCD.

No reason I don't do it other then that, and I don't usually sew more then one item at a time.

Webfrau said...

This technique is used a lot by quilters - perfect for joining lots of little bits. If you're doing a lot of it you can keep some scrap bits of fabric for starting and ending your "chain" with so that you don't lose any of those precious little pieces to the feed dogs.

mamafitz said...

i chain piece all the time when i'm making a quilt, but rarely for garment making.

CarlaF-in Atlanta said...

I don't. I haven't made the same garment back to back.

patsijean said...

Yes, I do chain-stitch whenever possible. For example, when sewing a shirt, I chain-stitch shoulder seams, sleeve and side seams [if I am inserting the sleeve in the round], all of my serge finishing of hems, seams when necessary, and shirt facings.

prttynpnk said...

I used to get my pin money selling scrub caps and this technique was a good friend to me! I've never tried it with my clothing sewing tho....

Linda Topf said...

This is more of a quilting technique but there are times you can do this for garments and home dec. I sew shoulder seams that way and outer fabric and lining seams. I also do this when serging seam finishes. it is definately a time and thread saver.

Linda T

Shannon Hillinger said...

I chain stitch whenever possible. I learned about it doing production sewing for my aunt's clothing business, and it became habit with quilting. I find it easy to do even when only sewing one item, doing the shoulder or side seams together, for instance. I even (sort of) chain stitch when doing more then one hem, by lifting up the needle and foot and pulling the first hem out of the way before putting the second in place. After the first couple of stitches I clip the connecting threads so that the weight of the fabric doesn't make sewing the next hem harder.

marysews said...

I chain the assemblies when making boxers for my DS. I make several pairs at a time, so this works well.

When I made my Butterick xxxx skirt, I made several copies of the pattern pieces. I placed them them two or four at a time to fit them on the fabric. that made cutting easy. https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/BIt7E0XtHjdDlVB9SsuGWtMTjNZETYmyPJy0liipFm0?feat=directlink

Becky said...

I'll do it sometimes when I'm making bags or things of that sort. Or when sewing various pieces together for the occasions that I make muslins, since the real construction order isn't quite as crucial there. For most clothes, I'll just take them one at a time.

gwensews said...

Chain piecing definitely has its place, especially when doing a lot of identical multiple pieces.