The past months I’ve been working on a project preparing my sewing patterns for download versions. Quite a challenge but I’ll get back to that in another blog. To celebrate this new step it seemed a good idea to start with a FREE download pattern of a panty. And while sewing a test for this pattern it occured to me I could combine this with a tutorial how to blind stitch the crotch lining, sharing with you some tricks of my trade.
The fabric was already cut and you can see a quick sketch of the pantie design in front of my cup of tea (can’t work without one ready on the side). It’s gonna be a boxershort, low on the hips and legs with extra length seams in both front and back. This wil give a chance to combine fabrics and also for optional pockets. I used some leftovers in pink with hearts print and some plain red for the sides.
Just a little secret I’ll share with you; using such extra length seams and contrasting colours will make you look slimmer!
Usually the best way to sew stretch fabrics is with a serger (lock stitch as we call this in Europe) to keep the stitches stretchy as well. For blind stitching crotches this will make too much stock pilling of fabric. There are some other options;
On the left of the picture you’ll see a stretchy stitch you can find on most sewing machines. It sews 2 stitches forward – 1 stitch backward – 2 stitches forward – 1 stitch backward and so on.
Some machines also have the stitch on the right; it’s like a zigzag but slightly twisted. This will make it a more narrow stitch than a real zigzag and very usefull for this purpose.
Both stitches will stay slightly stretchy, not enough for a long seam but just enough for crotches. And they don’t have extra volume like stitches on a serger would have. The best part; they don’t loosen at the ends so there is no need to make some backward stitches there. Please don’t try anyway because the fabric will get stuck in the footplate.
Always start with the widest part of the crotch which is the seam connecting to the back. When you start with the front it will be very difficult to pin and sew the much wider back seam. First pin the outher fabrics with the right side of the crotch on the right side of the back.
Beware; the raw edges don’t have the same length because the crotch seam is bunchy (makes the seam allowance getting wider at the edge) while the back seam is a bit hollow (makes the seam allowance getting shorter at the edge). They should be the same length right where you must stitch though.
Next step is to add the lining at the wrong side of the back. This way the fabric of the back will be in between both crotches. Stich with one of the stitches in the picture.
Now it’s time to connect the front. First pin the right side of the crotch on the right side of the front. And then there is the tricky part … the seam allowance of the lining must be folded at the end and added at the wrong side of the front. It is kind of hard to achieve in the beginning but believe me, it’s just a knack.
Make sure its pinned the right way before you start sewing, the stitches are pretty hard to undo. You can check by pushing the seam allowances back inside the layers lining. The seams should rest there without being turned around. The pull the seam allowances outside again and do your magic on the sewing machine.
This is how it should look when finished. At both sides the seam allowances are invisible INSIDE the lining.
When flattened some corners will stick outside the crotch. Cut these with small scissors, when you leave them it will be difficult to get the elastic on neatly.
It’s a good habbit to pin the layers of lining before finishing off with elastic. Double layers of stretch fabric always tend to slip around because the elastic must be stretched while sewing it on. All set now!
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