• Kaine

Sewing 110 - How to sew straight and curved lines

Updated: Dec 7, 2019


In this lesson we are going to cover the basics of sewing in a straight line, sewing curves and turning corners. We shall also address the issue of turning out corners and curved lines after sewing.



Before we start, I want you to take note of the Seam guidelines on your sewing machine. These are Measurements on the needle plate to assist you in aligning your fabric. If your machine does not have these lines, use your measuring tape to make your own.

  • Place a whole number directly under the needle and mark the required measurement to the right. e.g 1/2, 5/8 inch or 1cm, 1.5cm.

  • Place a piece of masking tape where your need it. (You can also buy a seam guide attachment)


How to sew straight lines

1. Thread the sewing machine . Set your stitch length to 2.5mm (10spi)

3. Set your stitch width to 0 (if required)

4. Place fabric beneath the presser foot

5. Align the edge of the fabric with one of the seam guidelines e.g. 1/2 inch (1cm). Keep the bulk of your fabric to the left.

6. Put the presser foot down

7. Roll hand wheel towards yourself to put the needle into the fabric (or press needle down button)

8. Step on foot pedal lightly to start sewing slowly. Sew about 2 stitches, then backstitch for about 2 stitches by holding down the reverse button/lever.

9. Continue sewing forward keeping your eye on the edge of the fabric and NOT on the needle. Do not pull or stretch the fabric, let the feed dogs do the work. Simply guide the fabric and try to maintain an even seam allowance.

10. At the end of the seam, backstitch again to lock the seam. Stop sewing. Lift up the presser foot, hold the fabric, roll the handwheel towards yourself to bring up the needle, pull the fabric gently towards the left to remove it.


How to sew Corners


1. Sew a straight stitch as normal, but stop just before the edge of the fabric at a distance equal to your seam allowance (1/2 inch in this example)

2. Leaving the needle down in the fabric, lift the presser foot up and turn the fabric or pivot

3. Put down the presser foot and continue sewing as normal. Do the same thing for any other corners.


Turning out corners


1. After sewing corners on your project, the proper thing to do is to clip the corners down first to make them turn out sharp and flat.

2. Clip your corners at an angle close to the stitching line, but be careful not to cut through the stitches.

3. For thick fabrics you may trim the seam allowance down altogether in addition to trimming the corners

4. Turn right side out, Push corners out and press


How to sew Curves


Curves are sewn same as straight lines. But I advise that you sew at a slower speed.

Simply make sure your edges stay aligned with the seam guidelines.


Turning out Curved seams


In the same vein as corners, after sewing curves on your project, the next thing to do is to trim, notch or clip the curves before turning the project right side out to make the edges lay flat.


Outer curves should be notched to reduce bulk and allow the fabric to lay flat

Inner curves should be clipped to ease the fabric and allow it to lay flat

Thanks for reading and see you in the next chapter!


Did you know that you can also watch this lesson?




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