Today’s Tips and Tricks Tuesday is by Hanne Vandersteen! She runs an amazing blog where she shares her sewing adventures, and today she’s going to talk to us about her experience on sewing with sequins (and how you can make the process a little easier for yourself!) For more of her posts, you can check out her blog here!
The good thing about sewing your own clothes is that you can spend a bit more money on the fabric and make it into a very glamorous dress! Sequins are glamorous and add extra spark to your sewing project. Wearing sequins can truly make you feel like a movie star!
However, sewing with sequins isn’t always as easy as we want it to be. Today I’m sharing 10 tips for sewing with sequins, to make your sewing life a bit easier!
Before we get started, let’s find out more about sequins!
Sequin fabric comes in different varieties. Most of the times, sequins are sewn onto the fabric. However, some sequins are glued, making for a much easier fabric to work with!
The fabric itself can be knitted or woven and can come in different fibres: wool, silk, cotton…
The following tips are useful for all types of sequin fabric and work well with beaded fabric too!
10 Tips for Working with Sequins
Tip 1: Simplify your pattern. If your pattern has fewer seams, there are fewer seams to worry about! You’ll also have less work clearing seam allowances, making for a quicker sew.
Tip 2: Use pattern weights instead of pins. It will be very hard to push pins through heavily sequined fabrics, and the pins might cause damage to your sequins!
Tip 3: Use old scissors when cutting out sequin fabric. The sequins will dull the blade of the scissors, so you better not use those sharp, expensive sheers on them!
Tip 4: Cut your pattern pieces on a single layer of fabric. Cutting your fabric this way won’t shift it, and your sequins will match up. Cutting sequins is similar to cutting other fabrics with a nap, such as velvet, so make sure you cut all pieces in the same direction. You might need more fabric, but the sequins shimmer differently going up or down, so cutting them in the same direction is important!
Tip 5 : Using beads instead of sequins? Tape the beads on the stitching line down with clear tape. Smash them (carefully) with a hammer and remove the tape. You can now sew your fabric without having to worry about the beads distroying your needle.
This is heavily sequined fabric, making it a bit more difficult to work with.
Tip 6: Before you start sewing, carefully cut away the sequins at the stitching line. This way, you will avoid breaking a needle on a sequin. Don’t toss the excess sequins because you might need them to fill in the gaps if you’ve cut away too many sequins!
Tip 7: You won’t win any points for glamour while sewing, but wearing safety goggles might be necessary when cutting and sewing sequins. Sequins tend to fly away and aim for your eyes, so make sure your eyes are protected!
This fabric doesn’t have that many sequins on it, making it easier to sew.
Tip 8: Before sewing, carefully cut away the sequins at the stitching line. This way, you will avoid breaking a needle on a sequin. Don’t toss the excess sequins because you might need them to fill in the gaps if you’ve cut away too many sequins! If you see any blank spots after you’ve finished your garment, use the extra sequins to fill up the gap,
Tip 9: Use a fine needle, for example, a size 70 needle. This size will easily fit in between sequins. Even in this case, make sure you have a couple extra needles at hand since you might break a needle or two.
Tip 10 : Be careful when you use your iron! Always use a pressing cloth, since your sequins might melt. Use a low temperature setting on your iron and try the setting on a scrap first!
The wool base layer of this fabric makes it possible to press the seams, using a press cloth
Bonus tip: Slow and steady wins the race! If you go slower when sewing sequined fabrics, you can manage where the needle stops. This makes sure you can avoid the sequins and you don’t break too many needles!