14 Sewing terms we bet you did not know


Sewing has been a around for a long time and like all arts it has developed it’s own vocabulary. Some of these are easy do understand and the term itself describes the action. But there are others that are unique and will make you feel a little baffled.

Here is a list of some of the most interesting sewing terms. See if you have heard or read them before.

Presser Foot: This is NOT the same as the foot pedal on the floor that you step on to make your sewing machine work. This is the part of the sewing machine that holds the fabric steady while the fabric is being stitched. It can be pulled up and down, off the fabric, with a lever or a button.

Feed Dog: The toothed metal piece underneath the stitch plate that moves up and down to push the fabric along.

Darts: A wedge-shaped fold used to shape patterns in order to make a garment fit better.

Fabric Grain: The orientation of fibers, woven or knit together, to create a fabric. The grain creates lines that run parallel and perpendicular to the selvedge.

Selvedge: : The edges of a raw fabric that run along the edge with the grain. Fabric has a selvedge edge so that it doesn’t fray before it’s sold.

Appliqué: The process of sewing a piece of fabric onto another piece of fabric, sewing close to the edges of the shape that you attach.

Bobbin: The thread that comes up from the bottom and meets the thread from the spool to form the stitch. Bobbins need to be wound up and inserted properly into a sewing machine.

Casing: A folded over edge of a garment, which is usually at the waist. It is used to enclose a way of adjusting the fit – for example for a drawstring.

Darn (or darning): Usually refers to the repair of a small hole, most often in knitwear, using a needle and thread. It is often done by hand, using a darning stitch. It can also refer to any number of needlework techniques that are worked using darning stitches.

Gather: A way of gathering the fabric to create fullness in the fabric, such as ruffles. It is a technique for shortening the length of a strip of fabric, so that the longer piece can be attached to the shorter piece.

Ladder stitch: – This is a stitch used to close large openings, or, alternatively, to join 2 pattern pieces seamlessly. Stitches are made at right angles to the fabric, creating a ladder-like formation.

Patchwork: A form of needlework that involves sewing together small pieces of fabric to create a patchwork like effect. This is very popular for quilting. Can be done by hand or by machine.

Staystitch: Stitching placed on or just outside the seamline. It is used to stablise the fabric and prevent it from stretching out of shape.

Tacking: Big stitches used to hold 2 pieces of cloth together to make it easier to sew. These temporary stitches are removed once a permanent seam is completed.

Learn how to Sew and more with Ushasew.com

At www.ushasew.com we teach you how to sew in the most fun and interesting way. We have videos that are informative and easy to follow. Projects that push your new skills and are rewarding.

To Learn And Create you need to start with the basics. Once you are adept at them you get to use your new skill and create wonderful things. The videos where you start making things are called projects. And we have lots of them to keep you excited and involved.

To give you an idea of the learning process here is how you start:

  • Right at the beginning you learn How to set up your Sewing Machine.
  • Then you move onto developing your skills by Sewing on Paper Yes paper! This is the best way to develop control and precision.
  • Once you have practiced this you move on and Learn how to Sew on fabric.
  • Only after you have understood these basic steps do you get to a project. And the first one is pretty interesting.
  • The first project that you make is a Bookmark It is simple, easy to make and will not take more than an hour. You will find this project really rewarding. And it will spur you on to the next lesson.

All these lesson and videos are available in 9 Indian Languages. So find the one that you are most comfortable with before you start.

Usha Has The Machine For You.

At Usha we have created a range of Sewing Machines that covers every type of user. From the absolute beginner to the most seasoned professional, we have a machine for you. Check out our range and see the one that fits your needs the nest. If you need to speak to our customer care people, they will give you all the information you need. Go through our range at www.ushasew.com , see what you like and then find a Usha store close to you using the store locator on our website.

We would love to see what all you create once you start sewing. Once you do start sewing we would love to see your creations. Please do share them with us on any of our social network pages. – (Facebook), (Instagram), (Twitter), (Youtube). Tell us why you made it, who was it for and how you made it special.
Now it is going to be a long summer so we suggest that you stay at home where it is cool and start your lessons straight away.


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