Starting a new sewing project is exciting and it really makes you excited to get your fabric measured and cut quickly so you can sit at your favorite sewing cabinet with your sewing machine and get started as soon as possible!
But wait - did you press the fabric before you cut it?
Though pressing is one of those seemingly bothersome tasks that most sewists would like to skip, there are some very important reasons why spreading your fabric out on an ironing station or cabinet with an ironing board and pressing before you cut is so vital.
Check out these five considerations before you think about skipping the pressing so you can be certain that your project comes out right every time!
1. Get to Know the Fabric
When you spread your fabric out at a ironing station on an Arrow cabinet or separate ironing table before cutting, the first thing you’ll learn is what the fabric really feels like and how it will behave as you work with it.
You’ll discover whether it’s got any unexpected stretch to it that you need to know about or if it’s prone to pulling as well as how stiff and thick it is to help you choose the right sewing machine needle.
It’s the first chance you have to really understand the fabric you’re working with to allow for any adjustments in your process to improve your results.
2. Determine Sides and Find the Grain
You need to determine the grain before you cut, so at the beginning of the project is the perfect time to do it.
Getting your fabric laid out on an ironing board also gives you a good opportunity to look carefully at the threads to figure out which is the right and wrong side of the fabric and how the grain runs.
3. Discover Flaws in the Fabric
While you’ve got your fabric out on your cabinet, be sure to look for flaws that might affect your final project.
If you find defects during pressing, you can arrange your pattern pieces in such a way as to avoid them so the flaw is excluded from your cut pattern pieces.
4. Makes Cutting More Accurate
A perfect project requires the careful and accurate cutting of pattern pieces.
If you try to cut your fabric while it’s still wrinkled, especially after you’ve pre-washed and pre-shrunk it, your accuracy will be off.
Pressing flattens and evens the fabric so that you'll know your pattern will lay flat on top of it and your cuts will be accurately cut to the right size.
5. Makes the Fabric Easier to Work With
On top of all the other important reasons why you want to press before you cut, doing so simply makes the fabric easier to work with even after the cutting.
With the threads pressed down and the pieces accurately cut out, sewing at a cabinet like an Arrow Auntie Em sewing cabinet will be smooth as the proverbial silk.
There will be less chance of making snags, needles will pierce the fabric more easily, and the stitches will set perfectly into freshly pressed flat fabric.
Pressing Before You Cut Is Critical!
So before you cut any fabric for the project you want to sew at your Arrow sewing cabinet, don't skip the pressing step for the reasons outlined here.
Your cuts will be more accurate, your fabric will stitch together better, and overall you’ll be much happier with the end result you get when you start out with fabric that’s been properly prepared and pressed prior to cutting out the pattern!