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  • Ready to give up!

    I am in deep despair.
    I am making 6 interlined curtains with quite thick fabric and hand made pinch pleats.
    On the first curtain I had great difficulty sewing the pleats through buckram lining interlining and material on my machine.
    By turning the machine by hand at the top thickest bit I managed with much broken thread to sew them.
    On the next pair I am cannot get the machine to sew. I am using a new 100 denam needle and have upper tension at 2.
    I have my husband turning the machine by hand because my arm is tired but it still wont sew. I cannot face sewing 5 curtains by hand.

    I am wondering about getting an industrial machine but when I went to the shop this morning the man said even industrial might still not go through that thickness. I also need a machine which is freestanding as I dont have space to store a table and the man said they only come with tables.
    Help! any advice welcome or just sympathy!
    Mary

  • #2
    Re: Ready to give up!

    Hi Mary,
    Don't give up!
    I had this problem once with three pairs of curtains, and had to turn the wheel of my industrial by hand to sew the pleats, which gave me blisters!

    I've not tried this, but could you trim away the interlining just above the bottom of where the buckram goes, and lock it in by hand, then put the buckram on? Would that give an acceptable appearance? What do the others think? Is there another solution?

    Regards
    Pen
    Kind regards
    Pen Harrison
    Colly Brook Fine Furnishings

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Ready to give up!

      HI Mary

      I do know how you feel.... I once stitched on some pencil pleat tape to a curtain with thick fabric, interlining and lining and knocked the timing of my industrial machine out. On reflection the fabric probably did not need interlining and would have looked just as good without. And I could have saved on the cost of a call out from my sewing machine engineer.

      However I hope you don't mind me asking but why are these curtains interlined. You say that the fabric is "thick".
      Could you not have just lined these curtains? I know that this is not helping you now but maybe the only option is to remove the interlining completely.
      Sorry I can't offer anything more positive. I do hope you get these curtains finished ok.
      Kindest Regards

      Penny

      Denton Drapes

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      • #4
        Re: Ready to give up!

        Hi i know exactly what you mean ,sometimes my machine struggles to cope and its an industrial one ,youcould try cutting the top of interlining down approx 20cms and adding a strip of lining tothe top of this making sure it is stitched across the width securely .So it is actually face fabric .buckram .lining .and then normal lining into the heading ,this is less bulky but you still get interlined curtains ,if the fabric is thick you shouldnt notice the difference in thickness at the top.ihope this make sense and dosent sound to gobel de gook

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        • #5
          Re: Ready to give up!

          Hi Mary,

          Is there anyone near you who has an industrail that you could use, worth checking out. Another option would be to check with your local fabric store for telephone numbers of curtain makers and check out if any of them would sew the pleats in for you on their industrial machine. Most people in the business are very helpful. I've heard the pfaff grand quilter is as good as an industrial machine and sews through lots of layers with ease also worth checking out if you're buying a new machine. Good luck

          Ursula

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          • #6
            Re: Ready to give up!

            Many thanks for your replies.
            I was asked by an interior designer to interline them but you are right Penny on reflection they dont need interlining. I should have said no to that.
            The buckram is fused both sides and I have already ironed it so dont feel I could undo that.
            Ursula, I will try the curtain shop around the corner and see if they will sew this curtain for me but on the next ones I will phone the designer and suggest adding the lining instead of interlining. What a great idea. I am sure it wont show because the material is so heavy. Even lifting one folded up curtain is heavy going!
            I have been taking on paid work since July and will think more carefully about which jobs I take on and I also dont yet know if I want to invest in another machine since mine will sew through most things. I was on the verge of tears yesterday so thanks for all your help as I couldnt think straight.
            Mary

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Ready to give up!

              Mary - if you decide you need to 'undo' the buckram you should find you can lift it if you iron it again to warm the glue, then gently pull it off the fabric/interlining.
              Louise


              sigpic Simply Sewing

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Ready to give up!

                I've experienced this as well and resteamed to lift the buckram off. I also trimmed down and added ordinary lining to the interlining. When fabric is very thick but customers are insistent on interlining they don't always appreciate the problems that can occur. My pleats also looked better without the interlining, more defined.
                Helen

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                • #9
                  Re: Ready to give up!

                  That's a good point, Helen. Sometimes interlined pleats dont fold very well at all. I will remember the lining top tip (if you see what I mean!!) for future.
                  Regards
                  Pen
                  Kind regards
                  Pen Harrison
                  Colly Brook Fine Furnishings

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Ready to give up!

                    Hi Mary, I've had this problem before and I really feel for you, it's so frustrating, my pore domestic machine has really struggled with some thicker fabrics and at one point just gave up. Just a thought for the future, if you decide on a new machine. I've been looking at semi industrial machines which don't require a table but will be a bit of a work horse and cope with most things. The Pfaff Grand Quilter and the Janome 1600P seem to fit the bill.
                    Kind regards

                    Cat

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                    • #11
                      Re: Ready to give up!

                      Totally agree re: Pfaff Grand Quilter and and the Janome 1600p

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                      • #12
                        Re: Ready to give up!

                        I agree too, its a really worthwhile investment, and you can put it down to business so its almost free! I struggled with a domestic for about 25 years, and so wish I had bought my semi industrial years ago, I am sure they would cope easily with your pleats, I have done some pretty thick interlined curtains with no problems.
                        Janie

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                        • #13
                          Re: Ready to give up!

                          This nearly made me cry, remembering one night when I was up until three in the morning trying to finish a job off in the very early days of curtainmaking ... I now have a very old Singer semi-industrial. A few years ago I thought it would be a good idea to invest in a new machine, and so went to a big dealer to try some out - armed with some dummy curtains made up in the heaviest fabric, interlining and buckram I could find. Not one of the new industrial machines, even 'walking' upholstery machines, could cope with sewing triple pleat headings like my old Singer, as the feet just didn't lift high enough. I think it's well worth while keeping your eyes peeled for an older, second hand machine: the other thing about the older ones is that they're much more simple mechanically, and seem to be built more robustly (a bit like their owners!!! )

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                          • #14
                            Re: Ready to give up!

                            The Janome and I'm sure the GQ has an extra high lift on the foot
                            Janie

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                            • #15
                              Re: Ready to give up!

                              They certainly do and they take some proper industrial feet as well as having a little selection of other feet specially for them. I'm told the feet are interchangeable between the J 1600p and the P GQ.

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