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Topic: Button hole help  (Read 557 times)
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rowdygirl
« on: February 18, 2007 07:34:48 PM »

I know this is going to make me sound like a noob, mostly because I pretty much am...but....

Can someone give me some basic instructions on making a button hole either
a. by hand OR b. on a machine that doesn't have a setting for making button holes

To anyone that offers advice (particularly pictorial advice!)  THANK YOU! and may karma be kind to you Wink
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MaxineBrandywine
« Reply #1 on: February 18, 2007 08:04:05 PM »

Hey rowdygirl, I think I can help..

My motto is "keep it simple" so here's my best advice...
Remember that a buttonhole is nothing more than two rows of stitching with a bar tac at either end... a bar tac is a short row of very close satin stitches...

Here's a pic I made to help explain...


Practice on scrap material of the same type that you want the buttonhole to be in...
The hardest part should be getting the finished buttonhole the correct size for your button.
I would measure the button then draw a line a little longer where you want the buttonhole to be. Remember, we're on practice material now. You want the button to fit snugly through the hole. Look at some of the buttons on a shirt, do some measureing and go from there...
Set your machine on zig-zag and set the stitch to both smaller width and smaller length. This will be the two rows of long stitches you see in the pic above...
Practice sewing them closely together side by side. Leave enough space in between to cut it apart later. Don't get too close and overlap any stitches or you will cut through them when you cut the opening.
Now set your stitch width bigger and leave the length the same. This is where you will stitch the bar tac on either end of those two rows of stitches. Make sure you overlap 'onto' the two rows just a tiny bit so you 'lock' then into place.
When you feel that you have the stitching done to your satisfaction get a single edge razor blade, a utility knife or maybe even a pair of tiny sharp pointed nail scisors. I use the razor blade. Lay the fabric on a flat firm surface that you can cut and not care about. The buttonhole should be facing up and down, not sideways. Start to cut from the top end of the buttonhole. Go slowly and firmly and only go to the centre. Turn the work around so  you can cut the other end the same way meeting in the middle. If you do it this way you are less likely to accidently cut through the bar tac stitches at the ends of the buttonhole.

I'm longwinded when it comes to advice... hope you don't mind.
I hope it helps
Let me know if there's anything you don't understand, I will be very happy to clear things up or answer any other questions..

Good Luck
Maxine

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« Reply #2 on: February 18, 2007 08:05:17 PM »

Ive never made a tute before but I hope this helps, my old machine didnt have a button hole function and this is what I would do. Use a small tight zig zag stitch. I draw the shape of the button hole on my material with chalk, then sew it on then cut it open with a seam ripper. I really hope this helps!!

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rowdygirl
« Reply #3 on: February 19, 2007 10:21:40 PM »

Wow, I never would have thought that it was that simple. I feel very silly now. Thank you both for the explainations!
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fromvenuswithlove
« Reply #4 on: February 20, 2007 02:57:49 PM »

Another hot tip for the actual cutting part is to put a pin thru the bar tacs then use the stitch ripper to make the hole - the pins stop you going too far with the stitch ripper (which is easy to do if you have a sharp one!)
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MaxineBrandywine
« Reply #5 on: February 21, 2007 10:10:32 PM »

Another hot tip for the actual cutting part is to put a pin thru the bar tacs then use the stitch ripper to make the hole - the pins stop you going too far with the stitch ripper (which is easy to do if you have a sharp one!)

Good one! I'll use that myself thank you Grin

Glad to be of help roudygirl
And don't feel silly about asking anything as far as I am concerned. We all started somewhere and had to learn by asking and trying things.
Maxine
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The problem with socialism is that you eventually run out of other peoples money.
Margaret Thatcher
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