Wednesday, 19 July 2017

Sewing Around The Bend

How to deal with tight curves when sewing? Pin, pin, pin!

I don't often use pins when I sew. I usually use wonder clips or just hold the pieces together with my fingers as I sew. There are times though, when pins really are essential.

This week I had to sew a straight and long rectangle onto a curved shape.

Look at this tight and narrow curve. Thaaat's pretty tight 😨😬.
Fabric can easily slip and stretch as it moves under the presser foot on your machine or leave you with little puckers when sewing around curves like this. ~I've had plenty of experience with that! *sigh*
I really don't like having to use my seam ripper and re-sew things. Ain't no one got time for that, as they say. Better to take the time to ensure the pieces are measured and cut out accurately and held together in the right places before sewing, to save on all of the teeth grinding frustration of unpicking later.

Using plenty of pins will hold the fabric pieces in place at tricky curves and a bonus is that if the pins are horizontal to the seam they will go through the machine so you don't have to unpin as you sew, which allows for maximum stability as the fabric passes under the needle. Whoop.
Just sew carefully and make sure the needle will pass over the pins and not catch on them and break. ~I've done that too. 😄

The trick to sewing curves is to sew sloooow and stop to adjust the fabric and smooth out any bumps with your fingers regularly. Another tip is to manoeuvre the fabric in front of you so it is straight and parallel with the foot before it passes under it. Sew a few stitches at a time and stop, manoeuvre the fabric around so it will pass straight under the foot, repeat. That way you can keep your seam allowance accurate.

The down side to using pins is all of the pricked fingers you get as you wrangle the fabric pieces around the machine and focus on the seam and pins in front of you and get bitten by a pin sticking out from the back. Ouch. Or does that just happen to me?

Have you got any tips for sewing curves? Share in the comments if you have. I'd love to hear them!



  1. I am a friend of the pin. I use them loads. I am glad to read I am not the only sewing over pins... For a curve like the one you show, I'd go as far as hand basting! I am a bit of chicken when it comes to sewing tricky bits.

    1. Hand basting would definitely be helpful!! ...I should have done that...!


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