I am a theatrical seamstress and could use a little advice on sewing vinyl.
We are making jeans – style pants for a show and vinyl is the fabric of choice. I tried fooling with a piece of it under the machine and I fear this will not be a happy experience. The show goes up in three weeks. Any suggestions??
Jan,I copied a Versace evening gown in vinyl - both solid and clear with decorative top stitching. After playing with it, I found the best results with the longest stitch on the machine and lightened pressure foot tension. Also use the heavier threads - like carpet thread and a larger needle, I used an 18. A walking foot was of little use to me, but I found a zipper foot run on the edge of a piece of adding machine tape gave a smooth ride to do the stitching. Also to secure a seam well the addition of topstitching seemed to help and reinforce, as well as a bias tape sewn into the seam on the bottom side. Bar tacking at strategic points helped, but was hard to get under pressure foot, so took foot off and used down position on feed dogs.
*Dear Bill, Thanks for your prompt reply! I got a commercial walking foot machine to work, but I would like to try your technique on the Bernina when I have to install the fly zipper(!!!). The pants are size 50(!!) and I have them big hand basted together on the inseam and the crotch seam for a fitting tomorrow. Since they are jeans-style pants, I will have to top stitch them as well. I guess the adventure never ends! I appreciate any further advice you can send my way. Jan
*I have been sewing with the vinyl fabric. I had no problem with it. I used a Pfaff 7550 with a DUAL FEED and a NON-STICK TEFLON COATED FOOT. I found that I could not press the seams, so instead I had to top-stitch them. I used a small sized needle with a regular point, and I used a slightly longer stitch length, and regular thread. Be sure that your thread is not too heavy for the vinyl, and that the needle is the smallest that you can use. It is important that you don't weaken the fabric by poking too many holes in it.
*Also another idea is to place paper[I have used adding machine paper for sticky fabrics] on top of the fabric and sew directly through it. Then after sewing, tear the paper off.
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