Sewing for beginners with Tilly and the buttons

Tilly Walnes answers all of your burning beginner sewing questions …

When you getfrom the Great British Sewing Bee sewing inspirationbut are dazzled by all the buttons on your sewing machine, you have no idea what a stitch loosener is and think you’re doing a turkey Bast on. never be afraid!

We met with Tilly Walnes of Tilly “and the kn> (and also the Great British Sewing Beemight have alumni themselves) to answer any sewing questions your beginners, so you can sew like a pro in no time. Plus.” Tilly’s Marigold 2-in-1 Jumpsuit and Sewing Trouser Patterns is an issue 104 gift. So who better to answer all of your sewing problems?

 Which Sewing Machine is Best for Beginners?

Says Tilly: There are lots of great entry-price machines for beginners who don’t need all the bells and whistles of a professional model. Look for a full size sewing machine with a straight stitch (for most stitches), an adjustable zigzag stitch (for finishing edges and sewing knitwear), and a buttonhole feature. Get one from a well known brand as it will be easier to find extra parts to go with it and to service it.

How do I sew a buttonhole – do I need a special attachment?

Tilly says: There are two main types: one-step “button”, which your machine automatically sews at the touch of a button, and four-step “button”, which you sew manually in four steps. Take a quick look at the instructions in your machine manual to see what your instructions are. Your machine should include a buttonhole foot designed for the type of buttonhole it will sew.


Can I only use my sewing machine if I don’t have an overlock?

Tilly says: yes! Overlockers, AKA Serger, are great for sewing stretch knitwear and for finishing seams on woven garments. However, you can also use the zigzag for your normal sewing machine – a narrow zigzag for joining knitwear and a wide zigzag for finishing seams on fabrics. I wouldn’t worry about getting a locker room if you’re just starting out.

What is an Interface?

Says Tilly: In sewing, a seam is used to add extra texture or strength to certain areas of a garment – such as the fabric. B. Cuffs, collars and waistbands. The pattern you are working with tells you if you need any. There are a few different types – I would recommend using the woven type if you can rather than the papery as this will last longer. Make sure you also choose something with a similar weight to your fabric.

What Is A BIAS TAPE And How Do I Use It?

Tilly says: Bias tape is useful for getting a neat finish on seams that aren’t connected to anything else and have no trim (this is material that is sewn on the inside of a garment, especially the neck and armholes) strengthen it). The bias cut allows the binding to stretch slightly, which is useful for “avoiding curves” like armholes and cutouts. You can buy pre-made bias binding relatively easily. Or you can make your own bias binding in one print, color, and width Make your choice to match the rest of your fabric.

What does baste mean?

Tilly says: Basting, or tacking as it is also known (which is the British term), is a long stitch used to temporarily hold pieces in place and is usually done by hand. It is useful to pin the seams together before properly sewing them so that you can try on and adjust your handmade outfit. It can also be used to hold one part in place before another is later attached over it, or to provide a guideline for another sewing line such as a sewing line. B. to create quilting.

What do notches on a pattern mean?

Tilly says: Notches are indicated on your pattern by either a small triangle or a small line at right angles to the cutting lines. Make a cutout of about 5mm where you will see notches when you cut out your fabric. They will help you keep the pieces in perfect alignment by joining the notches together if you want to sew everything together one last time.

How can I use my pattern without cutting it up?

Says Tilly: My favorite method is to use Schneider carbon and a copy wheel. The nice thing about this method is that all pattern sizes are preserved. So if you need to adjust the pattern or use a larger size later, you don’t have to trace the pattern first. You also don’t have to use your fabric scissors to cut through the paper pattern at the same time, so you will blunt the blades (not as strong) and end up with pieces that have been cut more accurately than if you were cutting the pattern at the same time as the fabric.

Which side of the fabric do I attach my pattern to?

Tilly says: Usually it’s best to pin the pattern on the wrong side of the fabric (the side you wouldn’t see) so you can mark it up without leaving stains on the outside of your garment. When I’m trying to match a pattern on the seams with a printed fabric, I sometimes poke my pattern on the right side so you can make sure the pattern flows and be careful with my markings. If you are sewing something that has different pieces of pattern for the right and left sides, read the cutting instructions in the pattern to make sure the fabric ends the right way up.

Take some time to familiarize yourself with your machine. Photo Credit: Tilly and the Buttons

What is Backstitch?

Says Tilly: Backstitching, or backtacking, is when you sew backwards or forwards at the beginning and end of a row of stitches to tie the threads and stop the stitches from unraveling.

 What tools do I need to start tailoring?

Says Tilly: The main things you need to get started are fabric scissors, needles, tape measure, seam rippers (to remove temporary stitches … and mistakes!), Marking tools (like a chalk pen), iron, and ironing board. You can find these on Amazon, in department stores, or in indie haberdashery.

Threading your machine isn’t as difficult as it looks. Photo Credit: Tilly and the Knobs Does it Work

What is a Coil and How?

Tilly says: A sewing machine uses two sources of thread. The spool of thread (or spool of thread) that sits on top of the machine and the spool of thread that comes in from below. The two sources of thread weave together to create the stitches. If you buy the spools of thread from stores and the bobbins are empty, you will need to pull some of the thread you have selected from the bobbin onto the bobbin before threading the machine.

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