A tutorial to show you how to fix broken stitches on a knit garment
When wearing knit garments it can happen quite often that the seams break, especially on areas that get a lot of wear and tear like around the neckline or on the bottom hem.
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How To Mend A Broken Seam
One of my daughters’ pj top looked like this after I washed and dried it:
With store bought clothes you will most always find a double stitched line on the outside of the garment. It does not only look great it also has the benefit of the stitches being (somewhat) stretchy. You can sew those double stitches on your home sewing machine by using a twin or stretch needle. Those needles come in different widths depending on how wide you want the distance between each row to be. I prefer the widest distance possible because it also allows for maximum stretch since the stitches criss/cross on the back of the garment.
Remove all your stitches and pieces of thread
Use your seam ripper and break the stitches about every inch or so.
Then pull out the thread from everywhere. It is no problem to gently pull a bit harder in order to make the thread break up more.
A great tip on how to remove tiny pieces of thread is using tape! I like my heavy duty packaging tape from Scotch and work in small areas. I place a piece of tape onto the area that I want the thread to be removed, I press in on with pressure and pull it off. Voila’, most of those pesky little thread pieces come off that way.
All pieces of thread are removed
The hem on my knit t-shirt is nice and clean now and ready to be stitched again.
To set your machine to double row stitching
Select your thread color and wind 2 bobbins with enough thread to sew the area. Because some sewing machines don’t have an extra thread cone holder I use a second bobbin and let it run in a small cup or other container. For this project I used a candle lid! Hey, you have got to be inventive sometimes, right?
Replace your sewing machine needle with a twin needle and secure it well. Set your tension to 3-4 and your stitch length to 3-3.5. That will give you a nice, smooth and straight stitch when sewing with a twin needle.
Prepping your knit hem
Not everybody likes to use pins, I know I don’t. I always prick myself 🙄 I love using double sided tape for those types of projects. Not only because of the pins but also because double sided tape is perfect when sewing with knit fabric! It prevents the knit fabric to stretch out which is definitely not desired on a hem. I use Bohin’s double sided tape which is great to work with! It dissolves in the wash.
I cut it in sections and adhered it to the inside of the fold not to exceed the fabric edge when it is folded back in place. I pressed it down firmly and peeled the backing off. Then I continued with the remaining area.
Once it was all covered, my hem looked like this, nice and smooth:
It’s time to sew!
Place your hem onto your machine with the right up, your fold is facing down. Sew right over the original stitch holes or use your preferred way of gauging the seam allowance. When you are done, back stitch a few times to secure the threads. Your knit hem is done!
Are you looking for great knit sewing patterns? Check out some of these:
- knit ruffle leggings from Whimsy Couture
- adult sweatshirt/top pattern from Sofilantjes
- girls tank/top dress sewing pattern from Serger Pepper
- or practice on a free pattern for a size 9 pajamas
Did you like this tutorial on how to mend broken seams? Please share it with your friends using the social media buttons on top. Leave me a comment ⇓ with your preferred way to fix broken seams!
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