If you don't have a overlocker/ serger, please don't rush to buy one!
What is a overlocker and overlock stitches?
Usually an overlock sewing machine will cut the edges of the cloth as they are fed through (such machines are called ‘sergers’ in North America), though some are made without cutters. The inclusion of automated cutters allows overlock machines to create finished seams easily and quickly.
Overlock stitches will do work such as edging, hemming and seaming a variety of fabrics and products.
When you don't have an overlocker, the simplest thing to do is the use zig zag as a substitute. A better option is to sew a straight stitch and then sew a zig zag, it will be more secured.
Another method is faux french seam (basically, you take the raw edges, fold them in on themselves and hand-stitch the top of the folds together)
Hope you find the above information helpful :)
I recently have more time to practice sewing. I don't know how to make pattern myself, but I personally think you don't need to learn pattern making unless you want to persuade a profession in design / tailoring. Patterns are so easy to find on the internet, some for free and some cost a little bit of money.
I made this maxi dress myself without using a pattern in just a few hours:
I didn't take any picture while making the dress so now I can only explain how I made this dress in words -- it's easy:
1. cut out a piece of light weight fabric around 60 inch x 65 inch - mine was a piece of cotton, very soft and thin.
2. fold the fabric at the 60 inch direction, cut out the upper fabric 10-15cm wide to be the upper ruffle of the dress. Then you have a big piece fabric for the body of the dress, and a small piece for the ruffle.
3. separately sew each of the fabric to become like a tube, I mean it's like a tube ;)
4. sew the edge at the bottom of the fabric -- fold a 0.5cm wide then fold again, and then iron the edge, then sew the edge. Do the same to the bottom of the ruffle fabric. Now that you have two pieces of "tubes" to be ready to put together to become one dress.
5. sew a elastic strap (use the one that is around 0.5cm wide, and the strap should be just right to hold the dress to your upper chest) to the upper body of the dress -- also where the ruffle will end up being attached to. It can be a bit challenging to sew the dress to the strap, as the elastic strap is smaller, when I sew I have to pull and expand it to match the dress. A tip to easy attach the strap is to stitch the edge and fold the strap into the dress first, then you can sew -- be careful not to sew the fabric to the strap to allow the free movement of the elastic strap.
6. now that we can sew the ruffle to the to of the dress, it's similar method to step 5 -- you basically stitch the ruffle of the dress first -- remember to hid the edge by folding it inside. Actually I sew the ruffle twice to secure the seam.
7. you will need a belt to make the maxi dress look fit. Then you finish this super easy maxi dress.
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