Sewing Terms to Know
Inseam- The vertical seams on pants between the legs.
Interfacing- Sew-in or fusible fabric used to stabilize the fashion fabrics. Can also add body, reinforce, or shape.
Invisible stitch- Made at 1/16-inch or 1/8-inch intervals through the side fold of the turn-under allowance. This technique hides the stitch in the fold along the edge.
Invisible zippers- A zipper designed to disappear into a seam when sewn in.
Jewel neckline- A neckline style that fits close to the base of the neck.
Jeweler's knot- A knot tied on a strand and then pulled down on a pin or needle to the base of the thread.
Ladder stitch- used to join two folded edges of fabric. Stitches are made at right angles to the fabric, creating a ladder-like formation between the fabrics, which are tightened and rendered invisible.
Lapped seams- Seams lapped one of the over the other wrong side to right side, with seamlines meeting in the center. Sewing in various ways usually a form of topstitching.
Lapel- The joining of a coat or shirt with the collar of the garment; varieties include notched and clover-leaf
Lining- Fabric (usually silky) that covers the construction details on the inside of the garment. (
Longline bra- A strapless bra that extends down to the waist or below.
Looper stitches- These are stitches formed by the looper section of a serger or overlocker.
Machine tension- Controlled by disks to apply drag to the machine thread. Adjust for thread and fabric variances.
Match point- A point marked on one pattern piece for the purpose of matching a similar point marked on a second pattern piece.
Milliner's needle- originally used by hat makers, this is a long, thin needle that does not get wider toward the eye.
Mini iron- a small iron, often with a wand-like handle, originally designed for pressing 1/4 inch quilt seam allowances.
Miter- When two strips cross at right angles the line formed by connecting the inside and outside corners.
Mitered bindings- When bindings meet at a 90 degree angle and a 45 degree seam divides them causing a diagonal seam.
Multisize pattern- A commercial pattern printed with several sizes on each pattern piece.
Muslin- 1. Unbleached cotton fabric. 2. Term used by designers to describe a test garment that checks fit and style.
Nap- A fabric texture that runs in a particular direction and requires all pattern pieces be cut facing the same direction.
Notches- Pattern marks shaped like diamonds or triangles that are printed on the cutting line of a pattern to indicate where the seams should meet.
Ombre- Closely related tones of color that graduate from light to dark
On-grain- The same as grain, straight-of-grain, or warp threads. It is a line parallel to the selvage on fabric.
Outline- The outline of a pattern is usually the cutting line, unless it is marked as a fold line.
Overcast stitch- A hand stitch that wraps around an edge like a spiral.
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