Velvet has a repute – and reasonably so – of being a tough, in fact distressing, to work with. It is there in the market for centuries as a high-status textile. And in the Edwardian era, it was a favourite fabric for dressy day gowns, reception gowns or dinner parties.
There is minimum to no doubt that a velvet outfit looks stunning. But for such a result that ensured well fit and drape dress with velvet, skill and some level of understanding is required.
No worries! By the end of this blog, you will have some handy tips on working successfully with this challenging fabric.
Sewing with Velvet Fabric
Nothing can be more distressing than having to unpick the machine seam already done on a velvet outfit and re-sew it. Machine-stitching almost always tends to leave unsightly marks on the velvet, which means re-stitching have to get done to a line that is a bit further from the real edge to hide the marks.
And secondly, any unevenness or puckering under the needle can result in permanent signs on the velvet garment. It is really a disaster!
Sometimes the only solution is to recut the piece of velvet fabric from fresh velvet yardage. It is almost necessary to avoid these kinds of consequences, especially because of the high cost.
While speciality velvet feet are out there available for the sewing machine, they are not fully reliable to keep two layers of slithery, slippery velvet moving smoothly under the sewing needle. You will have to unpick the seams carefully.
It may seem time-consuming, but the best way to sew velvet garments perfectly at the first attempt is to hand-baste the seams before subjecting the fabric to the sewing machine. And remember, not with just any thread either!
The best sewing thread to use is Clover or tire of size# 50, or you can even prefer pure silk thread of #100. These threads easily slide through velvet while hand sewing. And the best part is it does not leave any marks on the fabric if you remove them. This method will prevent needless upsetting situations while sewing garments using velvet.
If your sewing machine has the special feature of changing the position of the needle, DO USE IT when you are machine sewing the velvet seam.
By placing the needle in the right position, two or three-step toward the seamline, the foot of the machine will fall slightly away from the seam line when sewing. It helps to reduce the pressure underneath the velvet fabric outside the seam. Thus, it is less likely to cause crush marks on the area beyond the seam visible on the right side of the garment.
Finishing Seam and Hem Allowances in Velvet
The suggestion is to pre-finish the raw edges of velvet even before you start sewing it.
So, are you looking for velvet to sew garments? With these tips in mind, you can easily sew the fabric. But before that, you have to buy quality raw material – velvet fabric.