Photo by themissiah
We’ve gone over some sewing vocabulary with the post on Fabric Terms. In order to help you brush up on your sewing vocabulary, we’ve continued with some frequently used words. Are there any words or terms that continue to stump you? Let us know! We’d love to help out. In the meantime, here’s a handy list of sewing terms for you to reference:
Armscye is the sewing term for armhole. It’s pronounced arm-sigh.
Applique usually refers to small piece of decorative material that’s sewn on top of fashion fabric either by hand or machine. This tutorial shows how to apply lace applique.
A back tack is simply stitching forward then backward as you being a seam. This reinforces the edge of the seam to prevent the stitches from unraveling.
To baste, you use a basting stitch which is a long and loose stitch made by either hand or machine. A basting stitch can also be used for easy gathering.
Sewing ease or easing is when you sew a piece of fabric larger than the other together, such as attaching a sleeve, without any gathering or puckers.
Photo by carbonated
Facings are sewn to the edge of the garment and turned under to create a professional finish. They are most often used on necklines, sleeveless garments and waistbands.
Gathering fabric means you sew two or three basting lines across the marked area, pull the bobbin thread and push the fabric so it creates a kind of ruffle.
A placket is finished opening on a garment. For example the cuff of the long sleeve on the Negroni has a placket. This opens and closes to allow the hand through.
Ruching is fabric gathered in a seam for decoration.
Photo by felicity wormword
Seam allowance refers to the amount of space from the sewing line of the pattern. Most commercial patterns have 5/8″ seam allowance.
Slip stitch is done by hand and is relatively invisible. It’s often used when hemming a skirt.
Curves require stay stitching which is a permanent line of stitching within the seam allowance about 1/8″ away from the sewing line. Stay stitching keeps the curve from stretching out and becoming distorted.
Topstitching is a decorative stitch usually sewn with thick topstitching thread.
Understitching is when facing or lining is sewn to the seam allowance, keeping the facing or lining in place. This tutorial shows how you can easily understitch your facings.