We’re going to talk about how to sew a machine button hole. And if you have a newer machine that comes with programmed settings like mine, it’s so easy. And what you’re going to do is check your manual and it’s going to show you how to do it. The best way is you’re going to take the machine button hole foot, you’re going to swap that out for the regular one which you have, then you are going to take your button which you have, and you’re will be placing it in the back piece that slides, and when you put your button there, nice and firmly so that it doesn’t fall out, this tells the machine how wide your buttonhole needs to be.
So then when you put your presser foot in, lock it in, and drop that little lever down. This contain a little symbol for the button hole and it need it to be positioned behind the little white tab. We will take this scrap piece of fabric, and you always want to do the test buttonhole before you can do anything on your finished garment because it is a lot of stitching and taking it out is going to make that big mess. So what the machine is doing is creating 2 very narrow, very tight zigzag stitches. And then it is sewing stitches across the top and bottom and this is how it creates the buttonhole. So what you’re going to do once you’re in the right position, press your foot and it’s going to start going.
So it’s all finished. I’m going to lift up my needle. And then you can see my button hole. But you’re not quite finished. What you are going to do is trim the extra threads, and then with a pair of scissors or an X-Acto knife, which is my preference, you’re going to very slowly and cut open the buttonhole between the 2 rows of stitches, being careful not to cut through the ends and then there’s your buttonhole. And then the last step is to use a little Fray Check. It’s a little chemical solution which helps it to keep your fabric from fraying and it will keep those little threads from fraying as you use your buttonhole. And you’re all done.
How to Pick a Fabric
So, let’s talk about choosing fabric. You have so many different types of options and if you’re doing a specific project with a commercial sewing pattern, it’ll often give you different recommendations but here are a couple just to get an idea. This is a regular quilting weight cotton. It has a nice woven texture. Pretty strong. It doesn’t contain a lot of stretch and nowadays, you can get all different kinds of prints and colors. They come in organic and it’s just really versatile for those all kinds of projects whether it’s making pillows or clothing.
Another type of fabric is linen. It’s a little bit of a looser weave, that has a little bit rougher texture but it’s also really good for home dec projects and making clothes. Another type of fabric is jersey. It’s a knit rather than a woven and it has a lot of great stretch. It’s really good for clothes. It’s a little bit trickier to sew with. Um, you can use an over lock machine. You can also use your regular sewing machine but it’s great for kid’s clothes or clothes that need a lot of movement and it drapes really well. Another one of fabric which you can consider is a decorator weight. A decorator weight means it’s a little bit heavier. It doesn’t drape as loosely, and it’s usually wider. Regular bolts of cotton usually come in 44 inches wide.
Decorator weights come at about 54 inches so, they tend to be a little bit expensive per yard but that’s because you’re getting more fabric and it’s thicker. It’s more durable. You can make home dec projects, pillows, curtains. You can make accessories. Also, make outer wear with it. Something like this would be so good for a coat.
Sew an Elastic Waistband
Now we are going to discuss about how to sew an elastic waistband. I have a little sample here for a very little waist, and once you’ve sew and your piece or two pieces together, what you’re going to do is make a casing, which is folding over the fabric, pressing – which I already have – and then folding it over one more time, and pressing again. You’re going to have your piece of elastic, you’re going your measuring – sewing gauge to figure out that my piece of elastic is half an inch, so I want to make my casing just a little bit wider than half an inch. That way there’s enough room for the elastic to get in, but it won’t have too much room to wiggle around. You’re going to start the sewing very close to the bottom fold of the casing.
Back stitch a couple stitches, and then sew all the way around, rotating the fabric as you go, and making sure you don’t sew the underside while you’re at it. And then you’re going to want to stop sewing about an inch away from where you started and then back stitch, and then you are going to start threading your elastic. And this is what your casing looks like. And then you can take your piece of elastic and safety pin. You put the pin at the top of your elastic, and doing this just makes it so much easier to thread your elastic through. And so then you are in a kind of push and pull the safety pin and the elastic.
So when you decide that this is the right width, then you can trim your elastic, take out your safety pin, and then take your elastic, and then with your sewing machine, back stitch – forward, back, making it sure it’s nice and secure. And then you’ll tuck your elastic in, smooth it out, and trim your threads. And then what you’ll do is you’ll just finish sewing over those – that opening, stretching the fabric as you go. Back stitch – and then you can take a second to kind of smooth out the fabric.