Go Back   Cosplay.com > Cosplay Construction > Sewing/Fabric Craft

Reply
Thread Tools Rating: Thread Rating: 2 votes, 5.00 average.
Unread 09-22-2013, 04:41 PM   #1
ShinobiXikyu
Embroidery Enthusiast
 
ShinobiXikyu's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 13,084
Which method to use for sewing? (Stretch velvet)

I'm working on a Princess Luna gijinka from MLP, which I designed with a medieval-esque dress (So, sorry, not reference photo, not that it's particularly needed for this). I ran into a bit of a conundrum, though, when I bought stretch velvet for the fabric (it wasn't my first choice, but all the non-stretch velvet I could find, and I went to twelve stores, was either $50+ a yard silk velvet, or the wrong colour). It stretches on the crosswise grain, just for reference, but not lengthwise. The pattern I'm using doesn't call for stretch material and it'll be lined with a non-stretch bemberg lining (mostly bag-lined, so putting two and two together will only be at the sleeve cuffs, neck, waistline, zipper and skirt hem, and most of those are going to be decorated with trim anyway, so little stretch ability for the velvet there), but the fit of that isn't really the concern I have, as I'm not sewing it with the ability to stretch in mind.

My biggest concern, is what technique do I use for stitching all this together? I've read that stretch velvet can be a real pain in the ass to sew, and usually requires a stabilizer or a walking foot, and I've heard both straight and zigzag stitch types used (and I didn't intend to make it actually stretchy, so I don't know what one is better). I'm honestly not even sure what a stabilizer is, as I haven't had to use it before (all the stretch I have worked with, went fine through my machine). I don't have a walking foot or teflon foot on my home sewing machine and the usual foot tends to press down pretty hard, but I'm in fashion school and the worklab does have a machine with a walking foot, but only straight lockstitch.
So, help? I really don't want to ruin this by using the wrong stitch style, this is one of the fanciest projects I've done.

Oh, and as an extra that I could stand to know- am I dreaming at the thought of being able to press stretch velvet seams open or can it actually be done? I DO have access to industrial steam irons and a needleboard. If no, what's a good way to finish them that won't add bulk?
__________________
Quote:
Originally Posted by Moofingham View Post
There is a vibe here that says "We're in this together! Through thick and thin fabric! Through cold water washes and burning hot irons! Though we might super glue ourselves to our projects, cut holes/gashes/oh-god-mom's-gonna-kill-me into the dining room table, we will stand strong together. Unless there is a 75% off sale at the Fabric store. Then you're on your own. And get the hell out of my way." <3
Artist alley, costumes, businessey things--> http://whimsicalsquidco.deviantart.com/
ShinobiXikyu is online now   Reply With Quote
 
Unread 09-22-2013, 06:08 PM   #2
Kelley
Devil of Details
 
Kelley's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 5,449
You don't want zig-zag stitches on vertical seams really no matter what (they'll pucker when pulled apart) so just use a straight stitch (if you did have lengthwise stretch and wanted to preserve it you'd want to ideally use an overlock stitch - but that's not a factor here) - and since you don't care about stretch you can just use whatever hem stitch you think would be most attractive/easiest for you (your call).

Personally, I'd just start sewing it and see what happens. Why worry about need for a stabliser if everything goes just fine ? I've never needed anything for any velvet I've ever used - including stretch ones, but some people do. Just try it and see what happens. If you have trouble controlling the fabric, then think about finding a solution to that problem if it does actually exist as a problem - don't make problems to solve before they even exist.

Being able to press the seams well will depend on the fibre content more than anything - the velvet isn't really an issue, just make sure you don't crush the front and it's just like usual.
__________________
Disclaimer : This post written by a Grumpy Old Man

Actually in the pipes:
- Remaking Ser Loras doublet.
- Luke Skywalker, A New Hope
- Wind Waker starter costume in swim material
Eventually: Paul from Dune, Faramir, Harry Sullivan
Kelley is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 09-22-2013, 06:14 PM   #3
ShinobiXikyu
Embroidery Enthusiast
 
ShinobiXikyu's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 13,084
Thanks. Yeah, I HOPE for no issues, but I figured I'd better plan ahead in case of them or if there was any tried-and-true ways to sew it that'll put it together easy. Noody likes trying to sit down and get it to come together and spending the next three hours screaming at the ceiling because it won't sew right.
As for the pressing part, it's polyester velvet, and it's a short nap. It feels quite bristly if you rub it the wrong way but is nice and smooth going down. There's so many kinds of velvet, I'm not sure if this one has a specific name besides stretch velvet, so I'm not going to try and misname it.
__________________
Quote:
Originally Posted by Moofingham View Post
There is a vibe here that says "We're in this together! Through thick and thin fabric! Through cold water washes and burning hot irons! Though we might super glue ourselves to our projects, cut holes/gashes/oh-god-mom's-gonna-kill-me into the dining room table, we will stand strong together. Unless there is a 75% off sale at the Fabric store. Then you're on your own. And get the hell out of my way." <3
Artist alley, costumes, businessey things--> http://whimsicalsquidco.deviantart.com/
ShinobiXikyu is online now   Reply With Quote
Unread 09-22-2013, 06:57 PM   #4
Kelley
Devil of Details
 
Kelley's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 5,449
You probably know that polyester doesn't take to pressing well - so that's going to be your biggest challenge. There are some arguably "over the top" methods you could use to hand-finish seams perfectly flat but you'll likely be fine without doing that.

Things going wrong can be frustrating - but until you know exactly how they're going wrong it can be hard to figure out a solution. It will really depend on your machine, the fabric, and your own comfort if there's a problem at all. It's kind of like if you choose to pin a seam before you sew it or not - some people always do, some never do, and some do when it suits them.

A lot of people have problems when they let the fabric be pulled while sewing - if you keep the fabric free of being pulled as it goes through under the foot it should be fine.

The rest is down to the specific fabric itself - and since even with the same fibre and general fabric type you can get different behaviours you'll just have to try and see ! If it acts weird and you can't figure out the problem don't hit your head against a wall, just ask here (or if you have someone who can help you in-person) !
__________________
Disclaimer : This post written by a Grumpy Old Man

Actually in the pipes:
- Remaking Ser Loras doublet.
- Luke Skywalker, A New Hope
- Wind Waker starter costume in swim material
Eventually: Paul from Dune, Faramir, Harry Sullivan
Kelley is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 09-23-2013, 12:30 AM   #5
Evil Bishounen
Hail to the King
 
Evil Bishounen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 1,238
Gonna break this down into quotes for easier replying....

Quote:
Originally Posted by ShinobiXikyu View Post
My biggest concern, is what technique do I use for stitching all this together? I've read that stretch velvet can be a real pain in the ass to sew, and usually requires a stabilizer or a walking foot, and I've heard both straight and zigzag stitch types used (and I didn't intend to make it actually stretchy, so I don't know what one is better).
Use a straight stitch. A zigzag stitch is only when you WANT stretch, because when you pull on that seam, the stitching will "straighten" out.

Now, if you're using a straight stitch in a direction where the fabric CAN stretch as you put it on and wear it, the stretching of the fabric can break the thread and the seam will pop open. But if this fabric is two-way stretch and you're not placing any seams along the stretch direction, you shouldn't be dealing with this problem much. If it does become an issue, you could reinforce the stitching. (There's that triple stretch stitch on a lot of machines that'd work for stuff like this.)

Quote:
I'm honestly not even sure what a stabilizer is, as I haven't had to use it before (all the stretch I have worked with, went fine through my machine).
"Stabilizer" is something you apply to fabric to prevent it from stretching or buckling, and/or to reinforce it. It's different from interfacing; interfacing is meant to be permanent, and it's used to stiffen fabric or make it sturdier. Stabilizer may or may not be permanent - in fact, many types are removable.

Stabilizers are a very important thing when doing machine embroidery. A stabilizer is used as a backing to the fabric you want to embroider so that the fabric doesn't shift or pull in the hoop as the needle passes through it at high speeds, and so the tension of the stitching doesn't cinch or stretch the fabric and produce a buckling effect.

I personally have never used a stabilizer on a project that isn't embroidery or satin-stitching. But, it can be used in cases like preventing fabric from stretching while sewing. It's kind of an expensive way to deal with the issue, though. Good quality stabilizer is not cheap.

Quote:
I don't have a walking foot or teflon foot on my home sewing machine and the usual foot tends to press down pretty hard, but I'm in fashion school and the worklab does have a machine with a walking foot, but only straight lockstitch.
I HIGHLY recommend getting a walking foot. If you work with any variety of textiles, it's something you need to have. I seriously use mine on at least half of the projects I do.

You don't need a teflon foot for stretch velvet. But you really should have a walking foot. It will allow you to feed the fabric properly while minimizing stretching, and you won't crush the hell out of the nap.

Quote:
Oh, and as an extra that I could stand to know- am I dreaming at the thought of being able to press stretch velvet seams open or can it actually be done?
Nope. You can press stretch velvet. You need to use the synthetic setting on your iron so you don't melt the fabric. And you need to use a towel so you don't crush the nap.

Place a towel on your ironing board, and then place your velvet against the towel so that napped right side is against the towel. Then, press the seam allowance open like you would most other fabrics. If you want to protect the seam allowance nap too, you could put a second towel or a washcloth on top before you press down.
__________________
FF9 cosplay? Hit me up!

2014: Anime Los Angeles and whatever else falls into my lap

I now have a Tumblr. Sometimes I use it.
Evil Bishounen is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 09-23-2013, 09:14 AM   #6
ShinobiXikyu
Embroidery Enthusiast
 
ShinobiXikyu's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 13,084
Thanks so much, that basically answered all my questions. I guess next week I'll be seeing if I can get a walking foot for an 80's Singer in the fashion district with the last of my supplies (if any Torontonians are reading, suggest a place?)
__________________
Quote:
Originally Posted by Moofingham View Post
There is a vibe here that says "We're in this together! Through thick and thin fabric! Through cold water washes and burning hot irons! Though we might super glue ourselves to our projects, cut holes/gashes/oh-god-mom's-gonna-kill-me into the dining room table, we will stand strong together. Unless there is a 75% off sale at the Fabric store. Then you're on your own. And get the hell out of my way." <3
Artist alley, costumes, businessey things--> http://whimsicalsquidco.deviantart.com/
ShinobiXikyu is online now   Reply With Quote
Unread 09-25-2013, 09:34 PM   #7
ShinobiXikyu
Embroidery Enthusiast
 
ShinobiXikyu's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 13,084
Well, I have another related question- I have some simple beading to do on the skirt of the costume, but then I realized, crap, it's stretch velvet and won't go right in a beading/embroidery hoop. I'm not too experienced with beading but I've embroidered for years. What the heck do I do to get nice neat beads on stretch fabric?
__________________
Quote:
Originally Posted by Moofingham View Post
There is a vibe here that says "We're in this together! Through thick and thin fabric! Through cold water washes and burning hot irons! Though we might super glue ourselves to our projects, cut holes/gashes/oh-god-mom's-gonna-kill-me into the dining room table, we will stand strong together. Unless there is a 75% off sale at the Fabric store. Then you're on your own. And get the hell out of my way." <3
Artist alley, costumes, businessey things--> http://whimsicalsquidco.deviantart.com/
ShinobiXikyu is online now   Reply With Quote
Unread 09-26-2013, 08:03 AM   #8
Penlowe
Registered User
 
Penlowe's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 3,620
stabilizing fabric. In this case a broadcloth in a matching color would serve best I thing. Most other stabilizer materials would be stiff and show through the stretch velvet as a result, using fabric with no stretch will work better. You can starch the fabric before using it to sew, then hand wash the item after it's done to remove the starch and loosen things up again
__________________
Nothing is impossible, but some things are very expensive.
My Etsy shop: http://www.etsy.com/shop/penlowe
Penlowe is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 09-26-2013, 08:21 AM   #9
ShinobiXikyu
Embroidery Enthusiast
 
ShinobiXikyu's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 13,084
Would beading it through the lining fabric work? (So, sew the skirt and then bead, leaving my stitching not so invisible) What I'm doing is simple (just one line in bugle beads), but long/large, crescent moons. Or could I bead a huge string and lazy-stitch it on like a trim?
ShinobiXikyu is online now   Reply With Quote
Unread 09-26-2013, 05:03 PM   #10
Seamarie
Jill of All Trades
 
Seamarie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 189
Just wanting to add that I sewed my medieval style gown from stretch velvet with only straight stitch and a regular presser foot and had no problems. As always you can test on your scraps
__________________
Cosplay in progress:
Wonder Woman (70s TV version) - 90%
Tuxedo Mask (Sailor Moon) - 90%
Sailor Moon (anime version) - 5% made front bow
Athena Cykes (Phoenix Wright) - 2% starting glove

Future cosplay wish list:
Totoro (My Neighbour Totoro) claws (shoe covers), Dance Central, Yuzuki (Chobits), Kitty-N (Bust A Groove/Move), Chocobo (Final Fantasy series), Ewok (Star Wars), Rainbow Brite, Neytiri (James Cameron's Avatar), Xena, Card Captor Sakura
Seamarie is offline   Reply With Quote
Unread 09-27-2013, 08:02 AM   #11
Penlowe
Registered User
 
Penlowe's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 3,620
Quote:
Originally Posted by ShinobiXikyu View Post
Would beading it through the lining fabric work? (So, sew the skirt and then bead, leaving my stitching not so invisible) What I'm doing is simple (just one line in bugle beads), but long/large, crescent moons. Or could I bead a huge string and lazy-stitch it on like a trim?
beading is often done in such a way as to not expose the threads on the back not for aesthetics but to prevent catches from tearing it out by accident. You could sew through the existing lining then applique (either sewn or ironed in) more lining material over the sewn areas for security of the stitches.
__________________
Nothing is impossible, but some things are very expensive.
My Etsy shop: http://www.etsy.com/shop/penlowe
Penlowe is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 06:25 PM.


Copyright 2002-2013 Cosplay.com, LLC. All Rights Reserved.
All comments and posts in our forums are the opinion of the respective poster.