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This archived content is from Mary Wilkins’ sewing and quilting message board “Sew What’s New,” which was retired in August 2007. It is being provided by “Sew What’s Up,” which serves as the new home for many members of “Sew What’s New.”
From: vmorris828
Date: 05-30-2005, 07:41 PM (1 of 7)
Hi, I was told that you shouldn't used the serger to sew sleeves or other seam when the fabric is non-stretchy. Is that true? Valerie
User: vmorris828
Member since: 11-25-2000
Total posts: 41
From: plrlegal
Date: 05-30-2005, 09:23 PM (2 of 7)
Not true Valerie. A serger can be used on all types of fabric. However, I've never tried it on upholstery fabrics or anything really heavy.

User: plrlegal
Member since: 05-19-2001
Total posts: 318
From: westbrook
Date: 05-30-2005, 09:29 PM (3 of 7)
I use it for all fabrics! Sleeves problem. Put the sleeve in before you sew up the side seams.

1. stitch shoulder seam together.

2. stitch sleeve into garment

3. starting at the sleeve bottom serge up the arm and down the side. But make sure you keep the seam in a straight line.

4. done.

User: westbrook
Member since: 12-13-2004
Total posts: 35
From: Pudge99
Date: 05-31-2005, 11:09 AM (4 of 7)
OK. Here is the big difference between a regular machine and a serger. A serger moves both pieces of fabric though at the same rate. A regular sewing machine feeds the fabric through at different rates (hence the need for a walking foot for quilting).
Most patterns are designed for sewing machines so the pattern pieces are sized to allow for this difference in feed.
I used to do everything except my hems on the serger. I ended up with collars and sleeves with puckers in them. Then I learned the above information and started sewing my sleeves and collars on the regular machine first and then finish the seam with the serger. WOW! Amazingly I have had no more puckers.
Pictures of my successes and failures
Pfaff 2040
Janome Mylock 134D
Singer Futura CE-100 w/ Autopunch
Husqvarna Viking 3D Sketch
User: Pudge99
Member since: 10-30-2001
Total posts: 1375
From: Kylnne2
Date: 06-01-2005, 05:30 AM (5 of 7)
If your serger has differential can have pucker free serging. The Diff feed can work in several hold the fabric taught or to gather the fabric. Gathering and puffing is much faster when done on a serger. Blind hems and deco hems are also done faster and extremely well on a serger. I have serged plastic coated canvas on one of the least expensive sergers on the market, and it did a fine job. Sergers can serge so many different fabrics, that's why they were started and used first in the garment factory.
User: Kylnne2
Member since: 07-10-2004
Total posts: 629
From: June Harlow
Date: 06-01-2005, 06:27 AM (6 of 7)
For set-in sleeves, I always baste first, and then, after I'm happy with the results, I run things through the serger. I can't tell you how many times I used to ruin the armscye before I caught on to this !

Also, you can sometimes serge heavier material on a home serger if you first trim the edges so it doesn't have to run through the cutting blades. However, a word of warning, the "fingers" on the serger needleplate are sometimes very fragile. You may damage them by using this technique.
June ~

"If only I could find that missing pattern piece!"

June sews on a Pfaff 1209 and a Babylock 5180 serger
User: June Harlow
Member since: 05-30-2005
Total posts: 100
From: Kylnne2
Date: 06-02-2005, 06:40 PM (7 of 7)
Sergers are pretty hardy little machines..but one thing I think is important to remember that some are more heavy duty than others. The size of loopers and grade of materials, different knives and even knife placement in the machines differ. Using your serger with certain fabrics sort of tells you if the machine is straining and you don't want to knock the machine out of time or break a looper. Serger repair can be expensive. If uncertain about your serger taking a certain fabric I would just go very slow at first and see how the serger reacts..don't force it if there is any doubt. You might be pleasantly surprised at what the machine can handle.
User: Kylnne2
Member since: 07-10-2004
Total posts: 629
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