Sewing on the bias is a concern to many sewers as it can be a little tricky. Yet bias cut fabric may be preferred for some garments created with sewing machines like the Janome MC9900 because it yields a natural and soft flow.

So how can sewists get the best results with bias cut fabric once it is time to sit at their Janome sewing machines? By calmly and slowly using the following tips to have great seams with bias cut fabric, great results can be achieved.

Be Gentle When Working On the Bias

The biggest challenge in working with bias cut fabric is to prevent stretching, even though the fabric is handled from the beginning of the process to the end. Always keep this point in mind as a reminder to handle the fabric gently to prevent unintentional stretching and tension that change the bias. Cut gently, pin gently, and when stitching on the sewing machine, avoid finger-pulling the fabric. Allow the machine to move the fabric forward at its own speed.

Use Staystitching and Lots of Pins

After cutting the pattern pieces, carefully align them, being particularly careful to avoid any fabric stretching that could alter the entire pattern. Use staystiching to hold cut edges together so they don’t warp or stretch from handling or being sewn with Janome MC9900 sewing machines. After securing the edges with staystitching, line up seams and pin them to prevent shifting and bunching once the garment is sewn.

Press Carefully

In addition to cutting, handling, and careful pinning, the seams should also be pressed before sewing. It is very easy to accidentally push or drag the fabric with a heavy iron and distort bias cut edges. Avoid this by simply gliding the iron over the material without actually pushing down. The warm surface of the weighty iron should do the work, not applying pressure to the iron.  

Hang It Up for A Day

Now it is time to put the project on a hanger. A great tip that can really help when working on the bias is to pin together all garment pieces, then hang it on a hanger for a day or so. There are two reasons why doing this can ensure the final project turns out as desired.

  • Some fabric has a bit of natural stretch when worn. Hanging up the garment for a day allows for a certain amount of stretch, giving a clearer idea of what the item will look like once finished and worn.
  • It should be easy to immediately see if there are problems with the bias cut or if a seam does not allow the fabric to fall naturally. Adjustments can then be made before the garment is stitched on a sewing machine.

Working on the bias, even with the best sewing machines like the Janome MC9900, can be challenging because of how easily the fabric can be stretched before it is sewn. By using these fabric handling and preparation tips, anyone can properly make necessary alterations before completing the project. The old adage of “easy does it” can be applied to the handling of bias cut fabric, so with the right care and attention, anyone can have success working on the bias with their Janome sewing machines!

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