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  • Writer's pictureSusan Woodcock

Pulling Threads for a Straight Cut

It is important to cut fabrics square and straight. You can mark cuts using long rulers and t-squares but often the fabric is slippery, and no matter how hard you try it moves every time you make a mark.

There is another way! Pulling threads to mark a cut-line is a timeless sewing technique that works great.

Use this on sheer, slippery fabrics or if the pattern is printed off-grain like the floral linen in the example below.

Linen is also known to stretch and shrink - pulling a thread for a straight cut was a good idea for this project.

You can master this technique with a little patience and practice. Some fabrics are easier than others. Follow the steps below to learn how! I also made a short video which you can view here: How-To Video

Step One

Clip the selvage and separate one of the threads. This is known as the weft; fibers that are woven horizontally across the material from selvage to selvage. (The warp threads run vertically).

Step Two

Gently pull the weft thread, gathering up the material as you pull. When the thread breaks off, flatten out the material and you will see a line created by the missing thread. This is your straight cut-line.

Step Three

Cut across to the point where the thread ended, pull out a new thread and continue across the material to the other side.

Now that you have learned how to pull a thread...try this!

With practice you can learn to pull the thread and cut all in one motion. This is much faster and a fun thing to show-off to your sewing friends. With sharp scissors, pull the thread against the blade of the scissors and cut and pull the thread all at the same time. The tension of the pulled thread helps to keep the scissors in-line and you can cut-pull-cut all in one motion.

I hope you will give this technique a try!

Best Wishes,

Susan AKA HomeDecGal

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