Pinking shears are a handy accessory that everyone who works with sewing machines should have in their sewing kit. If you have them and don’t know what to do with them, you’re in luck.

Learn the ways pinking shears can help you when sewing clothing and other projects on Janome sewing machines like the Janome DC5100 and how you can get the best results with them.

How Do I Use These Funny Scissors?

Pinking shears are funny looking scissors that are actually a great help in the sewing room. They cut out little triangles from fabric edges, leaving a zigzag finish instead of a straight cut like normal scissors.

Pinking shears can be used on various fabrics but mostly on fabric that easily frays. Use them for these 2 reasons when working on sewing machines:

  • Prevent Edge Fray - Pinking is useful for preventing edge fray on fabrics that may fray after being cut. It’s a great way to finish seam allowances and reduce the chance they’ll fray and weaken the stitched seam. Use pinking shears on any fabric edge if there is concern that threads might come undone.
  • Make A Decorative Edge - Pinking makes a cute edging on any fabric. Whether you’re dressing up the edge of a larger piece of fabric or turning a smaller piece into some kind of accent, a little bit of pinking around the edges is a simple way to improve the look of your project.

Use Pinking Shears the Right Way

Before you grab pinking scissors and start cutting away, know that there are right and wrong ways to use them. Practice these helpful tips so you'll get the expected results when using them on projects sewn on the Janome DC5100:

Pinking Dos:

  • DO use pinking shears on fabric that frays easily. They're a no-no on knits and can snag or run it. On the wrong fabric, they will create a messier and more frayed edge, not a neater one.
  • DO use pinking shears to trim seam allowances, then press them open and flat for a quick finish that will prevent fraying.
  • DO add a second line of straight stitching about ¼-inch in from the pinked edges to keep your seam allowances flatter, look tidier, and add additional security against fraying.
  • DO re-align pinking shears teeth after each cut for a uniform zigzag pattern to prevent jagged pinking which happens when you start a new cut at the peak of a point rather than at the base.
  • DO get creative with pinking as an edge decoration.

Pinking Don’ts

  • DON'T use pinking shears on bias cut fabric that will be sewn on Janome sewing machines. The edges of bias-cut fabric are fairly resistant to fraying, so there is no reason to this. It could instead cause fraying at the edges. 
  • DON'T use pinking shears on loosely woven fabrics as they can instead destabilize the edges rather than securing them.
  • DON'T use pinking on curves or to cut out whole pattern pieces with curves. The result on curved lines may be more fraying than pinking.

With a better idea of what you can do with zigzag scissors, can you think of ways to use them in projects you sew on sewing machines? Even if you don’t have the time or desire to get really fancy with seams or edge finishes, you can add a hint of flair and prevent edge fray with pinking shears.

As long as you use pinking shears the right way for projects you sew on Janome sewing machines like the Janome DC5100, you should have few issues putting those funny-looking scissors in your sewing kit to use!

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