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  1. #1
    Senior Member Tacky Hiker's Avatar
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    Tips on holding fabric while sewng hem ??

    I am attemping my first DIY hammock and wondering if there are tips/trick on holding the fabric in place while sewing the hem? I am using JoAnn's 1.9 Ripstop. I am making a 11' gathered end, all black (fabric, whoopies, ridgeline) and calling it "onyx".


    I have heard of:
    -Using a little stick glue?
    -Low heat iron to make crease?

    Thank You !
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  2. #2
    Senior Member SteelerNation's Avatar
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    As an amateur thread injector, I usually sew each section of the hem to keep in in place. Therefore, for a rolled hem, I'll do the first fold and sew it down. I'll then do the second roll and sew it down. I end up with two stitches on one side, but feel like it makes a neater, more consistent hem for me.

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  3. #3
    Fronkey's Avatar
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    I never use pins or any of the tricks. A lot of the time I just fold the hem I want to make and then make a crease. With 1.9 ripstop, it will generally stay down and once you start sewing it gets a lot easier.

    Fronkey

  4. #4
    Senior Member Steve D's Avatar
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    Blue painter's tape works well to hold things in place and if small holes in your fabric aren't an issue, there's always straight pins.

    Ripstop will take a crease pretty well. If you're doing a rolled hem, fold your fabric over and crease the first fold with the edge of a credit card (or your thumbnail will work just fine) along the whole length of the first fold, then fold and crease again. Add a vew pieces of tape at about 4-6 inch intervals where the first fold meets the rest of the fabric and you should be good to go...

    (Edit added)

    Ramblinrev's post below reminded me of something I forgot...remove the tape as you get to it...do not sew through it. He's right on target, it'll gum things up in a heartbeat...
    Last edited by Steve D; 02-06-2012 at 15:21.

  5. #5
    Ramblinrev's Avatar
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    I do not recommend glue or tape of any kind for any reason. It will gum up your needle and can transfer the gum to the inner bobbin workings creating a complete and total mess. Heat sealed adhesives are a different matter as they are not activated until they are heated. But I do not think they are worth the hassle for a hem.

    IMO pins are your friend although others have used binder clips, paper clips, staples and any manner of holding aid. I have gotten to the point where I fold freehand as I go but I only stitch down one fold at a time. Work no more than a foot or so ahead of the needle. Work slowly and carefully until you get the hang of it. Even experienced professional stitchers do not expect to zing through an 11' hem without stopping to adjust. You'll get it with practice.
    I may be slow... But I sure am gimpy.

    "Bless you child, when you set out to thread a needle don't hold the thread still and fetch the needle up to it; hold the needle still and poke the thread at it; that's the way a woman most always does, but a man always does t'other way."
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  6. #6
    PapaSmurf's Avatar
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    I hold the fabric with my right hand in front and my left hand in back, sewing 12 or so inches at a time. I keep just enough tension between my hands to keep the fabric taught, but not tight. Takes a little practice, but after awhile, you can guide the fabric through letting the machine feed the fabric and your hands just keeping pace with the machine.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Tacky Hiker's Avatar
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    Ok, thanks for all the help !
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  8. #8
    Senior Member millarky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tacky Hiker View Post
    I am attemping my first DIY hammock and wondering if there are tips/trick on holding the fabric in place while sewing the hem? I am using JoAnn's 1.9 Ripstop. I am making a 11' gathered end, all black (fabric, whoopies, ridgeline) and calling it "onyx".



    I have heard of:
    -Using a little stick glue?
    -Low heat iron to make crease?

    Thank You !

    Sometimes I want to use my finish nailer

    Roll and sew. Roll and sew......
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  9. #9
    jbrianb's Avatar
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    I sometimes use an iron to iron in a crease on stubborn fabric... low heat,of course. An iron will melt nylon ripstop if you use the cotton/linen setting.
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  10. #10
    titanium_hiker's Avatar
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    pins can sometimes get unwieldy. (for a somewhat complicated build, a pack that I'm sewing the webbing into the seams of a double layer of fabric, and turning it right side out to finish) I'm trialling pins, then tacking. To tack, you hand stitch your pieces together very roughly, in long big stitches, then run it through the machine, and then pull out your tacking stitches.
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