Facebook Email Pinterest Twitter X Instagram Tiktok Icon YouTube Icon Headphones Icon Favorite Navigation Search Icon Forum Search Icon Main Search Icon Close Icon Video Play Icon Indicator Arrow Icon Close Icon Hamburger/Search Icon Plus Icon Arrow Down Icon Video Guide Icon Article Guide Icon Modal Close Icon Guide Search Icon

Threads Project Guides

Sewing With Knits

Guide Home

Serge Knits with Differential Feed

Find out how this helpful serger function keeps knit seams and edges smooth and flat.

Your serger’s differential feed function is the key to smooth, flat seams in knit and woven fabrics.

A serger is an ideal tool for constructing and finishing garment seams. However, fabrics may be stretched or compressed during serging, creating edges that are wavy or puckered.

To solve this, engage the differential feed. In this “Essential Techniques” video, Threads Editor Sarah McFarland explains how this function works: It enables you to set the serger’s two sets of feed dogs to move at different relative speeds. The feed dogs than either slightly stretch the fabric—to prevent puckering—or slightly compress it—to prevent stretched, wavy edges.

When working with unstable sweater knits that are prone to raveling, differential feed enables you to stabilize the edges with an overlock stitch without distorting the seam allowance.

For other ways to finish sweater knits, see “Master Class: Professional finishes for sweater knits” by Connie Long, Threads #147, Feb./March 2010. You can purchase that issue here. Find general information on sewing knits in “Tips and Tricks for Sewing with Knits” by Ann Steeves.

Previous: Expert Tips for Finishing Knits Next: How to Sew a Sweater

Log in or create an account to post a comment.

Sewing With Knits

Sewing With Knits

Create your own comfortable, stylish clothing in stretchy fabrics.

View Project Guide

View All Project Guides »

Become a member and get unlimited site access, including the Sewing With Knits Project Guide.

Start Free Trial

Get to Know Knit Fabrics
Construction Tips for Knits
Designing with Knits
Knit Projects