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Hi everybody. I just started sewing a little over a month ago, and I’m going to a class at Singers to learn. Right now I don’t have my own machine but I plan to get one by December. In my sewing class, I am almost finished sewing a skirt and I am a bit pleased with myself (since it’s my first time sewing) but I have two problems…1. When I put on the skirt, it bunches up around my hips. I’m wondering if it’s because of the material I’m using (cotton) or is it that the skirt is too small? It doesn’t feel tight around my hips but it keeps riding up. Maybe it should be tighter, because at my waist it has some space.

Anyway, 2. I noticed that my seams don’t match up. I would think that to correct it I should just cut the fabric til they do but I read that this is a common mistake made by beginners when the seams don’t match up. How else am I suppose to correct this then?

Thank you!


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  • 985f0154fdefdf284531d76b36fbffee7a42548e_large

    Oct 4, 2011, 10.51 PMby katexxxxxx

    Unless we know exactly HOW the skirt is bunching up at the hips, it’s a bit difficult to diagnose the problem’s cause and give advice to correct it. It could be anything from the shape of your hips to the fabric being cut off grain, with about 40 other possible problems between the two!

    Can you take a picture of the back, front, and both sides, and post them where we can see them? It would be very useful. :) It would also be best if you can get someone else to take them, with you just modeling, rather than trying to do them yourself in a mirror. Make them full length in a natural pose.

    As for the seams not matching up… Do you mean one ended up longer than the other? If so, first check your pattern pieces against each other. If the seam of one bit is slightly longer than the bit you sew it to, look for it saying ‘ease’ along that seam somewhere… Sometimes the back section of a closely fitted skirt will be longer than the front. You have to match the notches up on the seam and then ease the longer side into the shorter side between the marks on the pattern.

    Another problem can be that if you just match up one end of the seam, one bit can stretch or creep as you sew it, and end up longer at the other end. Always pin the ends first and then match the notches and gently ease the two bits together, without pulling or stretching them. Pin at regular intervals, about 4" apart.

    And always remember that it is the SEAM LINE you should be matching up, NOT the cut edge!

    1 Reply
    • Missing

      Oct 5, 2011, 12.19 AMby JeAnn Murray

      Ah ok, I don’t have a camera but I can get a picture taken of me tomorrow. About the seam, I remember that I was instructed to make 1 inch seam allowance for one pattern (front I think) and 1 and a half for the back…completely forgot about that. Thanks for the last advice, I didn’t know.

  • Threadbanger_av_large

    Oct 5, 2011, 12.04 PMby blueshoegal

    did you thoroughly iron both the pattern and the material? If one side is longer than the other (otherwise I’m not sure what you mean by seams don’t match) it may be that something wasn’t cut properly.

  • Missing

    Oct 7, 2011, 06.39 PMby JeAnn Murray

    I think that I will learn a lot from the internet about the finer details when it comes to sewing. I knew that I was suppose to press the material as I sew but the teacher has never told me. I’ve never heard about pressing the pattern either. She seems more concerned about how fast I go. I really like this site. But no, I didn’t do either and to me, the cutting didn’t seem to have been done accurately.

    I haven’t taken the picture yet, even though I got the camera. But I showed a friend the other day (she doesn’t sew) and she said that it’s because my material is so stiff, it doesn’t have any ease so as I move it moves with me. I had chosen the material more on what should be easy for a beginner and not on how it feels and looks. I did think it would be too stiff for a skirt. I plan to make another one in the future. @ blueshoegal, I think my seams don’t match because of the pattern measurements. The teacher told us to measure 1.5 inch allowance for the back skirt pattern but 1 inch for the front.

    Thank you…if I have this problem with the next skirt (made from a different material) I will post again. Thanks for the help and advice

    1 Reply
    • Patti_12-28-2011_large

      Oct 7, 2011, 06.55 PMby patti-r

      Go to the library get a few books on sewing, sounds like you would get better instructions.

      The books or online for beginners will teach you about cutting on straight of grain and many other tips that will make your projects more successful.

  • Missing

    Oct 8, 2011, 01.12 PMby mickeygirl

    maybe you mixed up the centre front and centre back with the side so you are wearing your skirt sideways.


    • This is a question
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