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Fabric bunching up

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mdicroce posted on Thu, Feb 23 2012 3:34 PM

Hello, I'm new here and new back to quilting.  My mom and I learned to quilt together and she became a real expert quilter.  When she passed away 5 years ago, the quilting went with her I think because I haven't been able to quilt since.

Well.......i'm trying to get inspired again and really push myself to do it without her.  I feel like a real beginner and have an old real beginner question.  I'm making a very very simple table runner for my first project using charms and I'm sewing my first two rows together at this point.  I can't remember how to keep the fabric from bunching up more and more each time you hit a seam. I DID remember to pin, pin, pin but that doesn't seem to be working.  I remember having this problem before and knew how to sew without this happening.  

Can anyone help me with some tips for this problem.  I'm getting so frustrated because I want my seams to match up and they are coming out just a scunch off.  Thanks !!!

Melanie

 

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Nana replied on Thu, Feb 23 2012 3:57 PM

Melanie

Press your seams so that they go in opposite directions.  That way you can butt the seams together and only have one seam layer on each side of the seam.   I place a pin at the intersection of the seams.   I hope this makes sense.   Just let me know if you need a better explaination.

Vinton, Virginia

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Nana, Thats a good explanation!                                                                                                                                     Melanie, Keep the pin in as you sew, and  sew slowly over the pin, and seam should come out perfect.            Practice a little bit and you will be able to whip through those seams in no time.                                       Susan                                                                      

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Joy replied on Thu, Feb 23 2012 5:41 PM

Personally, I rarely pin anything. I don't have the patients. But anyway I have found that if you hold the fabric slightly taunt but not pull, your seems are beautiful!

Joy

Mooresville, NC

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Thea replied on Thu, Feb 23 2012 6:07 PM

Melanie - I am not sure why your seams are bunching when you get to them - as has been said - pressing seams in opposite directions does work - but if for some reason you haven't done that you just have to go slow and make sure that the seams stays matched.    I do leave  pins in and sew over them... years ago our machines could go over a pin without problem but today they are so sensitive and if you forget you can really do some damage to your machine.  I put a pin into the seam on one side and check to make sure it goes through exactly on the back side.  I then put a pin in on a slight angle - after the seam but holding down the fabric on the back side... I then take the first pin out as I get to it and the 2nd pin out when I come to it.  

Do you have a walking foot?  that gives an even feed to your sewing - if you don't have one and learned way back when like I did before they had them - you learn to hold the fabric on the back side and guide it as the machine is sewing - don't pull but just guide to make sure it is evenly feeding it - that is what the machines today do that have the walking feet.

 

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Carey replied on Thu, Feb 23 2012 8:01 PM

Hi, I had that problem before. I found out three most common reasons for this are your top tension number, you could need a new needle. Clean and oil your machine by the feeddogs. If that doesn';t help and their tips don't help you may need to have your machine serviced for a really good cleaning. That only costs about 65 bucks where I live to do this. Any sewing machine or quilting store can do this for you. :) Good luck and hope these help.

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gini replied on Thu, Feb 23 2012 10:39 PM

Hi Melanie, welcome to the group.  You might have the wrong foot and it's pushing up the material ahead of it.    My 1/4 inch foot has a tendency to do this.  Make sure your seam is pinned, then just as your foot gets to the thicker area, lift your presser foot and the material will ease under it.  My machine will raise the foot a little if I tap the control pedal.  

gini in north idaho

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mdicroce replied on Thu, Feb 23 2012 11:12 PM

WOW !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Thank you all so much for all this great info.  I'm gonna read all your posts again and try again, with all of your help, on my next row.  

Thanks again so much

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Nana replied on Thu, Feb 23 2012 11:16 PM

Melanie

You are very welcome.  I hope some of these suggestions help.  Let us know how it goes.

Vinton, Virginia

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When I'm matching seams I pin, putting the first poke through the left side of the seam and come out on the right side of the seam.  All this close to the seam itself.  Hope this helps you.  Welcome to our wonderful network of quilting friends.  You will learn to love us!!  Keep quilting, it would make your Mother proud!

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Jeanine replied on Fri, Feb 24 2012 11:17 AM

Tattinglady:
When I'm matching seams I pin, putting the first poke through the left side of the seam and come out on the right side of the seam. 

I do the opposite of this.  I was taught to pin just right of the seam and put the pin at an angle.  That should stop any bunching right at the seam while holding the seam together at the right spot.

 

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Now I remember I used to sew over the pins and it worked great!!!!! but the foot I'm using is the 1/4 inch with the guide and of course the guide gets in the way of the pin head. Darn

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Thank you so much for your kind words.  I hope she is watching but if she is.........she should be helping !!!!!!!!!!!!  Geeeeez mom !!!!!  LOL

 

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gini replied on Fri, Feb 24 2012 6:00 PM

mdicroce:

Now I remember I used to sew over the pins and it worked great!!!!! but the foot I'm using is the 1/4 inch with the guide and of course the guide gets in the way of the pin head. Darn

Pin your pins from the other direction.   They catch on my foot, too if I pin from the right.

gini in north idaho

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