Sewing machines get things done more quickly than hand-sewn techniques. Industrial sewing machines help to create garment fits that deliver a professional fit and look.
Industrial sewing machines deliver 6500 stitches per minute (STM) whereas domestic machines range from 250 to 1000 stitches per minute. The knee fit helps you to work freely on the fabric. The needle mount provides a crisp stitch to bring a finished look.
Here are some techniques from the industry to improve your sewing practice
- Do not pin – Try to use fabric weight when you are going to cut pattern pieces, and when you are going to use a sewing machine, use your hand to hold the fabric down.
- Clean cut – Get a good table from the house. Use it for the cutting purpose. It is better to invest in a rotary cutter and mat for the table. This is a must for industrial sewing tasks, but it’s also necessary when doing home sewing as well. To know how important this is, think of all the time you can save and frustration that will be avoided after using straight edges to cut both thick and thin fabric.
- Add steamer – Ironing clothes can help you with more than just pressing open seams. Adding a little steam to the fabric will shape darts and make it softer, which allows for easier manipulation and positioning before or during sewing. Be careful not to over-steam though, as this could distort its appearance. Always try your best to sew many seams before steaming.
- Do not cut diamond shapes – When cutting fabric, don’t waste time with complicated diamond shapes or it may fray or weaken the seam. Instead, use nips that are accurate and less likely to do so.
- Seam allowances need to change – Reduce seam allowances to 1/4″ on enclosed seams. The 5/8″ seam allowances in home sewing patterns are too bulky for collars, cuffs, plackets, facings, and waistbands. Reducing time spent trimming, grading, and clipping the seams after sewing is worth it because your work will be smoother looking when you’re done!
- Fuse it all – Cut and mark all your interfaced fabric pieces at the same time. Fusing a piece of fabric large enough for all these parts will make it easier to cut them out and save you from losing any loose pattern pieces in between cuts!
- Sew the buttonholes first – Sewing buttonholes first is a good way to ensure you have enough space for the buttons. Cut your buttonholes open with a punch rather than using scissors, as this will create neater edges.
- Sew flat – Sewing can be done in batches. If a project has similar items, try to sew all the pieces of that item at once. For example: sewing skirts or pants together first and then moving on to tops. Make sure you are assembling details before assembly- this will save time later with things like zippers and buttons.