PUTTING THE GARMENT TOGETHER. Put the garment together and baste it, following the Deltor for putting together or the Illustrated Instructions. Try the garment on and if necessary make any slight alteration.
Although there is a particular daintiness and charm about hand-made underwear, much fine and beautiful work may be done on the machine. The saving of time is so great that when a number of pieces are to be made this method is usually given the preference. A few of the smaller pieces—a corset cover, chemise or a pair of drawers—can easily be made by hand, but the amount of work on gowns, petticoats or combination garments inclines one toward the machine method.
One must understand something of the mechanism of the machine. It must be kept clean and well oiled. The number of the thread, the size of the needle, the length of the stitch, and the adjustment of the tension must be adapted to the material. No. 80 cotton is the best for white work, except for tucks and hems and all outside stitching on very sheer and fine materials, when No. 100 or No. 120 may be used. Every make of machine has a table giving the sizes of needles that should be used with certain number threads, which it is wise to follow. Remember that a sewing cotton requires a looser tension than silk.
The hemming and tucking attachments are great time-savers, but many women prefer to gather ruffles, puffs, etc., by hand and stroke them.
IN MAKING underwear it is important that there should be no raw edges. This not only makes it neater and daintier, but it makes it stronger and better able to stand frequent laundering. It is washing that wears out underwear more than the actual use.
Ill. 112. Binding the Bloomer Seam SEAMS. In sheer materials it is necessary to make the seams as invisible as possible. French seams are best on this account (Chapter 17, page 86). In fact, French seams are used on all underwear, whether it is sheer or not, because they show the least. These seams should be made as narrow as possible. In materials like batiste, silk muslin, net and Georgette the seams may be joined with a narrow lace seaming. The method that is used for this seam is shown in Illustration 307, Chapter 27, page 133.
In all underwear, seams should be as narrow as possible. In materials like thin silk, net, Georgette, silk muslin and batiste the seam edges may be cut very narrow, rolled and whipped together. The method is the same as in Ill. 152, page 87, only both edges are rolled instead of one.
In all materials that suggest daintiness machine hemstitching may be used for the seams and for trimming. (Chapter 25, page 118.) In the heavier cottons and silks where a tailored finish is desired flat fell seams (Chapter 17, page 87) are used. They should be made as narrow as the material will permit. Flat-stitched seams (Chapter 17, page 87) are the strongest seams for underwear and are often used for drawers, especially for children's drawers and for pajamas. They are always used for the pajamas when a mannish tailored effect is desired. A fell seam is used to piece the material in cutting unusually wide garments such as drawers, etc.
The edges may be hemmed (Chapter 18, page 91) faced (Chapter 19, page 94) or trimmed in the various ways suggested in this chapter.
For bloomers, both French seams and flat-stitched seams are used. A strong flat seam is especially good for gymnasium wear. It may be made by stitching the seam and pressing it open flat. The curved part of the front and back should be slashed half-way to the stitching every little way, so that the seam will be perfectly flat and will not draw.
Trim off the corners of the slashes to give a curved edge (Ill. 112) and finish the edges of the seam with a narrow ribbon binding or with a bias binding of sateen or percaline the shade of the material. Use flat-stitched seams in piecing.
BINDING THE SEAM. The seams of bloomers may be bound with ribbon binding sewed on by hand with a running-stitch or stitched on. Or the seams may be bound with sateen or percaline cut in bias strips an inch wide. Baste the bias binding on the right side of the seam edges, turn it over the raw seam edge turning in the raw edge, and baste on the under side, keeping the turned edges even on both sides of the seam. Stitch