Sewing Terms to Know
Pattern drafting- Drawing a paper pattern by positioning lines, points, and curves in a prescribed manner.
Peplum- An extension of a bodice below the waistline. It can be flared, pleated, cut separately from the garment, or one piece.
Pickstitch- A variation on the backstitch where you backtrack only slightly and only a bead of thread is visible on the right side of the garment
Pin-fit- Taking in seams, darts, or tucks by temporarily pinning in the seams to the right size.
Pintuck- A narrow, stitched fold of fabric. Usually seen in multiples.
Pintuck foot- A ridged foot that causes the fabric to peak up in a small tuck when sewn with a twin needle.
Piping- A narrow piece of bias-cut fabric folded over a cord and inserted into the seam between the edge and facing of a garment as a decorative trim
Pique- A textured-weave cotton
Placket- The overlapping fabric that covers an opening in a garment and supports or hides the closures. Usually a faced strip of fabric that houses either the buttons or buttonholes on a closure.
Pocket patch- Any pocket that is sewn on the face of a garment.
Point presser- A small tool used to get inside a tight corner or small space for ease of pressing
Point turner- A tool used to turn a sewn corner to the right side with a sharp, crisp point.
Preshrink- Wash fabric before cutting or sewing.
Presser foot- Holds fabric to the feed dogs on a sewing machine.
Pressing template- Shaped, heat resistant plastic, metal, or even a manila folder, used to create a smooth, crisp line or edge when pressing.
Prick stitch- Backstitch.
Princess seam- A vertical seam on blouses, dresses, jackets, or coats, usually positioned between a side seam and the center front and back, and passing over the bust apex.
Quilt- Coverlet or wall hanging made from small pieces of fabric sewn together in batted layers and topstitched, or the action of topstitching the quilt layers together.
Raw edge- Unfinished, cut edge of fabric.
Rise- The distance between the waist band and the crotch seam on pants.
Rolled hem- The edge of fabric is rolled and stitched for a very narrow hem. Can be sewn by hand, regular sewing machine, or serger.
Rotary cutter and mat- Round cutting blade in a handle and a matt that doesn't cut.
Roving- Unspun clean fiber
Ruching- Gathering. Sometimes whole garment sections are gathered into a seam(s) or can also be ribbons of fabric gathered and used as trim.
Running stitch- Hand-sewn stitch that weaves in and out of the fabric, resulting in a dashed line.
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