TIPSY TUESDAY: HOW TO MATCH UP PERFECT STRIPES
HI DARLINGS! Ok I decided I am going to call this day Tipsy Tuesday…it just sounds fun! Since this day is about tips, tricks, techniques etc. I have been looking through your comments and requests to pick out things to cover. I have received several requests on matching stripes so I thought this would be the perfect time since I am working on a new top and using stripes…
This is my method for getting perfectly matched stripes. First thing to know is the best way get perfect stripes on both sides of the front and back is to cut your pattern piece in a single layer not on the fold as indicated on the pattern (which is perfectly fine to do if not working with stripes)
The first thing I do is make a line at the one place I know all three major pieces (front, back and sleeves) will intersect…under the arm. I make this line you see on my front pattern piece, back pattern piece and sleeve.
Once I have all three pattern pieces marked I lay out my fabric in a single layer.
With my fabric laid flat and working on only one layer I place my front pattern piece down and align my underarm line with the stripes I want (in this case it’s the blue line) I then mark the stripe pattern on my pattern.
Making the two lines helps me easily and quickly place my pattern pieces down. If you are working with stripes of different widths or colors I would mark at least 4-5 lines on my tissue.
Once my markings are where they need to be I go ahead and lay my pattern weights down so that nothing shifts.
Because we are working with one layer and this piece is meant to be cut on the fold I mark a line along the center front of the pattern pieces as shown above. This way when I flip my pattern over to cut the other side I know exactly where that CF placement is. I mark along the neckline about 1″ so I can align it after flipping the pattern over.
Once I have it marked and the weights are in place I cut along the side, bottom, neckline etc. and then I stop.
Now flip the pattern over, align the center front to the line you made and make sure the neckline lines up to. Now cut the other side.
Once you are done cutting the other side you will end up with a full front piece with perfect straight stripes. You are going to do the back pattern piece the same way.
I like my sleeve stripes to match at least in a few places, it won’t always match all the way around because you ease in the sleeve cap but you can match up the line across your chest. That is why I mark that underarm line. You will be cutting your sleeves out one at a time instead of on a double layer as usual. Place your lines same as for the front and back, match your markings.
Cut out your first sleeve and then make sure to flip your pattern over to cut the other sleeve so you end up with a mirror image and not two of the same side sleeve.
Here is another faster but slightly less accurate method. If you have enough width on your fabric to fold over and see the underside of the fabric (as shown below) you can align the stripes on the top layer and bottom.
Place your pattern on the fold as instructed on the pattern, place your weights and cut.
This method does work but only if you can see enough of the bottom layer to make sure the stripes are even. I ALWAYS prefer the first method because it’s much more accurate but this method as you can see below is not to shabby.
Once you are done you will have a perfectly matched stripe at all intersecting points…under the arm and along the side seams.
I hope this helps you conquer your fear of sewing with striped fabric! xoxo