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Thread: Creative Uses for Your Serger?

  1. #1
    Member RedThread's Avatar
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    I took the leap and bought a serger this weekend. I just wanted one for a long time and I've been good, so I finally did it. I had a couple projects in mind that needed the overlock feature, but I know many of you have probably used yours for things that are way more creative.

    So, I am hoping you will help me out, for the times when my husband asks, "Now what did you need that for", and post ideas for how you got your monies worth. Pictures would be awesome!

    Thanks for the help.

  2. #2
    Super Member sunflower126's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RedThread
    I took the leap and bought a serger this weekend. I just wanted one for a long time and I've been good, so I finally did it. I had a couple projects in mind that needed the overlock feature, but I know many of you have probably used yours for things that are way more creative.

    So, I am hoping you will help me out, for the times when my husband asks, "Now what did you need that for", and post ideas for how you got your monies worth. Pictures would be awesome!

    Thanks for the help.
    I have never used mine for quilting projects. I only use it when sewing clothing or finishing things like curtains or tableclothes. I know that there are books available for using the serger with quilting.

  3. #3
    Super Member LivelyLady's Avatar
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    I use mine for finishing edges before hemming pants, etc. I use mine for rolled hem on napkins to match placemats I make. And I use it to make ruffles for pillows, DGD skirts, etc. It's really quite handy!

  4. #4
    Moderator QuiltnNan's Avatar
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    i don't use mine for quilting as too much thread bulks up the seam allowances behind the blocks. it is quite useful for the other types of projects mentioned here

  5. #5
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    I don't have pictures to share, but your serger will make a great rolled hem for lightweight, chiffon-type fabrics. You can also make a great edging for napkins. If you make clothing, it will do a great job with knits and will give the seams a clean, professional finsh. I use my serger before I put the binding on a quilt. I use the three thread overlock or edge stitch around the outside of the quilt. It makes the binding a little easier to put on.
    This might give you a little more info:
    http://www.sergerplace.com/projects.html

  6. #6
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    I've heard of some who use it to serge around fabric before washing so that it doesn't fray as much. I know one teacher who does it to all of her quilts once done and waiting for her to get around to quilting it; she knows in an instant that the quilt is ready and not of some stage in between. I have an old serger (around 18yrs old) I haven't gotten it out since I started sewing again to see if it still works; that still on my to do list.

  7. #7
    Member RedThread's Avatar
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    Thank you, these are great ideas. I have heard some people use it for QAYG, but haven't seen any pictures.

  8. #8
    Power Poster Prism99's Avatar
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    I saw a denim quilt of squares that were sewn together with a serger (*right* sides of denim together) using red wooly nylon thread. Afterwards the exposed red seams were sewn down flat with the sewing machine. Very cute, very decorative, and makes for a lighter weight denim quilt.

    Made one or two regular quilts with the serger but did not like the bulk of thread in the seams.

  9. #9
    Senior Member merrylouw's Avatar
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    1. I used it to piece a Turning Twenty -- worked great, with perfect 1/4" seams. (I did it as a test, which worked.) Was very fast.
    2. I used it to overcast around new fabric before washing; also worked great, and fast.
    3. I used it to make satin pillowcases (satin REALLY ravels!) using the tube method.
    4. I made satin capes for the grands using the rolled hem feature. Awesome!

    Have fun, and use your imagination. Anything goes!

  10. #10
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    I have been sewing for over 60 years and bought a serger about 30 years ago when I did dressmaking. I get it out to use for small jobs but have never wanted to waste all that thread on quilting. I would hate to have to rip out those stitches if I made a boo boo! I can do find sewing on my older New Home computerized machines. Much easier to pick out straight stitches.

    June in Cincinnati

  11. #11
    Super Member calla's Avatar
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    Haven't bonded with mine, and I have take classes x3 but a friend uses hers to make strip quilts............calla

  12. #12
    Super Member AliKat's Avatar
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    Yep, I use mine to finish edges of things I am sewing, whether it is re-doing a hem or parts of a camp shirt so the edges don't fray and look professionally finished.

    ali

  13. #13
    Super Member Mitch's mom's Avatar
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    I use mine to edge fabric before washing. We use a septic system so the more stuff I can keep out of it the better. I buy fleece on sale and make dog blankets, I use it a lot for home decor. Mine gets quite a bit of use.

  14. #14
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    I don't use my serger for quilting, but I use it all the time in garment sewing and home dec sewing. I can't imagine sewing knit fabrics without a serger - it makes using them so easy. I also do rolled hems all the time on everything from napkins to flannel receiving blankets - professional and decorative. One of my standard presents for wedding showers is a few sets of cloth napkins - some plain ones and some seasonal ones too. I also have made crib sheets for my twin granddaughters, applying the elastic with a specialized serger foot. Pretty nice to be able to make a crib sheet in 15 minutes! When my children were little, I made dozens of pants, tshirts, and sweatshirts for them with the serger, just putting together an assembly line for efficiency.

    Can you tell I really like my serger? I used up an old White after 20 years and bought a new one about 3 years ago.

    Pam

  15. #15
    Super Member huntannette's Avatar
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    I serge all my edges before i wash my fabric, i serge around the cut out pieces before I assemble the clothes i make...makes for such a wonderfull finish....i serge around my quilts when thy are done and just waiting for binding....sometimes the bindings wait quite a while...lol..i serge around nice fleece and flannel to make receiving blankets for babies.....i use mine all the time.....oh yeah and made a lot of T-shirts and sweat-shirts over the years...as well as pjs....i serge the bottom of pants or skirts/dresses before i hem them...
    Quote Originally Posted by RedThread
    I took the leap and bought a serger this weekend. I just wanted one for a long time and I've been good, so I finally did it. I had a couple projects in mind that needed the overlock feature, but I know many of you have probably used yours for things that are way more creative.

    So, I am hoping you will help me out, for the times when my husband asks, "Now what did you need that for", and post ideas for how you got your monies worth. Pictures would be awesome!

    Thanks for the help.

  16. #16
    Member RedThread's Avatar
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    I am feeling better already. Thank you for the ideas.

  17. #17
    Super Member quiltinghere's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RedThread
    So, I am hoping you will help me out, for the times when my husband asks, "Now what did you need that for", and post ideas for how you got your monies worth. Pictures would be awesome!

    Thanks for the help.
    Tell hubby I just repaired all of my hubby's favorite bandana edges. I did a small hem roll on the serger.

    p.s. My serger is OLD but runs great. I purchased it wayyyyy back in the 70s....about 6 months ago the thought crossed my mind to sell it.....glad I didn't. I've used it for volunteer sewing and repair sewing for the last month or so.

  18. #18
    Super Member kateyb's Avatar
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    I use mine for t-shirts, sweatshirts, cotton knit nightwear. The stretch and sew type patterns have great directions and several sizes. A t-shirt or sweatshirt takes about 1 1/2 - 2 hours from cut out to finish.
    The chiffon scarves are very pretty and make great gifts. Buy two yards of fabric then cut in half or thirds lengthwise and use the rolled hem foot. It also is great to use 1 1/2 yards of wool the same way for neck cloths for men.
    I make my own napkins, 18" square and again use the rolled hem foot. I don't buy paper napkins, cloth is cheaper in the long run, washes,and is better for the environment. They also make great gifts, especially if you can get the fabric on sale.
    I have done smaller quilting projects with the serger because it can be adjusted to a 1/4" seam allowance. It works great for crazy quilts using the fancy fabrics that fray.

  19. #19
    Junior Member quilterken's Avatar
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    You can use the rollor hem to show the seams like in this baby quilt. Add a ruffle with a rolled hem, use the ruffling foot that you can get for some sergers.
    Attached Images Attached Images


  20. #20
    Super Member GABBYABBY's Avatar
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    I have used mine to serge around a fleece blanket.
    No binding necessary. Sometimes I just serge around
    a coaster or pot holder or even a mug rug.

  21. #21
    Super Member lovelyl's Avatar
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    In the classes that came with my serger, I made a book cover, a small purse, a woven checkbook cover, cosmetic cases, and pillow cases. There is a great book with all these patterns and more. If you are interested, PM me and I will find it and give you the name.

  22. #22
    Super Member jitkaau's Avatar
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    Have a look at the serger projects on Sewing With Nancy. I have tried most of them and they really get you to think outside the box. Making scarves, quilts, cushions etc. to doing flatlock and chain embroidery on sheer fabrics. The Baby Lock site has great projects as well. Kaye Wood also has a quick quilt as you go on the serger as well.

  23. #23
    Junior Member Sewhappytoquilt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by the casual quilter
    I don't have pictures to share, but your serger will make a great rolled hem for lightweight, chiffon-type fabrics. You can also make a great edging for napkins. If you make clothing, it will do a great job with knits and will give the seams a clean, professional finsh. I use my serger before I put the binding on a quilt. I use the three thread overlock or edge stitch around the outside of the quilt. It makes the binding a little easier to put on.
    This might give you a little more info:
    http://www.sergerplace.com/projects.html
    After attempting to sew and hem three little Flower girl dresses with chiffon overlays - I finally got SMART and used my serger - PERFECT!

  24. #24
    Super Member lovelyl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lovelyl
    In the classes that came with my serger, I made a book cover, a small purse, a woven checkbook cover, cosmetic cases, and pillow cases. There is a great book with all these patterns and more. If you are interested, PM me and I will find it and give you the name.
    Several people have PM'd me wanting the title to the book I described. Now that I know the name of the book, I thought I would go ahead and post it here in case others are interested! The book is "Ready, Set, Serge" by Georgie Melot. I got it off of ebay and love it! The LQS where I bought my serger used it to teach the classes. The cosmetic bags take about 5 minutes to make and look really good! I am thinking about making them for co-workers for Christmas and putting their favorite lipstick or a gift card inside. The book gives a basic version of an item and then a stepped-up (more challenging) version of the same item.
    Linda

  25. #25
    Swap Hosts Krystyna's Avatar
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    I use mine all the time. I make lots of scarves and also use it to make carry pouches for the mantillas I sell. It's terrific for edging mug rugs if you don't want to bother with a binding. I think my favorite use is for making dish towels. I cut heavy muslin to size and either use white or a color that compliments the machine embroidery pattern. Like my embroidery machine, I never thought I wanted a serger, but I use it constantly!

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