October 16, 2007

Heirloom Sewing Tip - Lace to Lace

This tip may be particularly helpful to beginners, especially if you are nervous about machine sewing, lace to lace.

I've often recommended using a little piece of tissue as a stabilizer at the beginning of the seam to prevent the lace from being pulled down into the sewing machine feeddogs. That's works fine until you sew past the tissue.

After you get past the tissue, it can get tricky keeping the lace headings butted together and preventing them from overlapping at times. Or trying not to stretch either piece of lace.

With a little practice, you can get the hang of it and will soon be joining lace together like a pro. But what if you don't have time to practice? What if you will be joining yards of lace to lace for a fancy band and need to do it right, the first time, without any mistakes?

Here's a little trick for perfect lace to lace heirloom sewing......

First, get a roll of Floriani Wet-n-Gone Tacky water soluble stabilizer. Yes, I know it is made for machine embroidery, but that's ok, we're going to use it for heirloom sewing anyway. (It comes in a big 10 yd roll that will last you forever, if using it for regular sewing)

Next, cut some strips of the Floriani Wet-n-Gone Tacky. Cut the strips wide enough to accommodate the width of the two pieces of lace that you will be sewing together. (i.e. if you are joining two 1/2 inch wide lace insertion pieces, cut the stabilizer a little over 1 inch wide.) If you have a rotary mat and cutter this part will be a breeze.

Now, peel off the paper backing from a stabilizer strip and neatly place the two pieces of lace on the sticky side of the stabilizer. Make sure the lace is straight, without gaps and not overlapping. Repeat this as many times as needed, depending on the length of the lace that is to be joined.

Next, set your zigzag stitch on your machine and sew away! When you're finished sewing, rinse the lace in water and the Floriani Wet-n-Gone Tacky rinses out completely.

Here's a photo of some lace I joined using this technique. It was fast and easy!

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