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Topic: My First (and Last) Oil Cloth Project  (Read 8538 times)
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LimeRiot
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« on: August 12, 2009 06:58:36 PM »

I wanted to make an oil cloth bag that I could take with me on my weekly trips to the local produce stand. I tweaked another pattern to make what I thought would be an even easier bag. Ugh - was I wrong! I found the oil cloth so hard to work with - a regular sharp needle and tread didn't work very well but a heavy duty needle/thread didn't seem quite right either, you can't iron it, it didn't feed very well through the machine and it was hard to pin. Despite my constant frustration I managed to finish the project.

Does anyone have tips for working with oil cloth? I love the look of it but not sure I can stand another project!



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« Reply #1 on: August 12, 2009 07:12:51 PM »

I like the look of it. But i have no idea how to work with this type of cloth.
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« Reply #2 on: August 12, 2009 07:16:01 PM »

A tip to make that stuff 'slide' better under the presser foot is to sandwich it between tissue paper, then when your done just tear off the tissue paper. 
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« Reply #3 on: August 12, 2009 07:16:15 PM »

I like your bag. You did a great job on it. I've never worked with oil cloth, but I have heard that if you leave it layed out flat in a warm spot, it gets the wrinkles out. Not sure if it works, but couldn't hurt to try.  Wink
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« Reply #4 on: August 12, 2009 07:21:38 PM »

I second the tissue paper. Any paper will help it feed through more easily. I have also pressed the backside of oil cloth with a piece of cotton between it and the iron. It worked out well. Also you can use a hammer or wood block to pound out the seams when you are sewing non-ironables.
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« Reply #5 on: August 12, 2009 07:46:14 PM »

A tip to make that stuff 'slide' better under the presser foot is to sandwich it between tissue paper, then when your done just tear off the tissue paper. 

Ohhhhh! That makes perfect sense! What a great idea. Thank you so much. I will definitely try this.

Cheyenne - I will also try putting it in a hot place to get the wrinkles out. I could see that working.

Thank you all for the tips!
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« Reply #6 on: August 12, 2009 10:13:31 PM »

It's BEAUTIFUL!!!!..Love the bag..And the tips sound GREAT!!!! Wink
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« Reply #7 on: August 12, 2009 11:44:39 PM »

What I think oilcloth is great for is giving structure to the bottom of purses, backpacks, grocery bags, etc. However i usually hand sew if in (just slip stitch it) because of just what you said. I am going to try that tissue paper idea - thanks. I usually have some waiting to be recycled and a lot of times it's not really good looking enough for another present.. though I use it for that anyway!

I use a lot of oilcloth for tablecloths and covers indoors and out also for lining drawers and cabinets. I tend to have scraps from all the above that I like to use in bags. I like that I don't have to be a special supply for these projects and the oilcloth is pretty cute too. I also like that I can get it at the hardware store when I need it.

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ScotSkipper402
« Reply #8 on: August 13, 2009 09:06:12 AM »

Seems like a leather needle would help, too.
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« Reply #9 on: August 13, 2009 03:28:46 PM »

I think your bag is lovely!  I have two yards of vinyl-coated cotton I want to use to make a tote and lunch bag.  Im so glad you posted this question before I started sewing.  I found the following info about sewing on oilcloth:

http://sewmamasew.com/blog2/?p=5 (lots of suggestions for sewing on  oilcloth quoted consistently by others who write about using oilcloth)

http://ijustlovethatfabric.blogspot.com/2009/02/oilcloth-pvc-what-it-is-easy-to-sew.html

http://www.quiltersbuzz.com/2006/05/post_26.html (most hints taken from sewmamasew, but has a good suggestion about using bias tape)

http://writemamawrite.blogspot.com/2007/04/oilcloth-tote-tutorial.html (tutorial for an oilcloth tote that includes some techniques for making the seams lie flat)

http://oilclothaddict.blogspot.com/2009/04/oca-sewing-tip-5-pressing-oilcloth.html (how to press oilcloth)

One writer said not to use pins because the holes will show (how do you hold the fabric together while sewing?), while another indicated that pins are no problem.  Will the pin holes re-fuse if you iron the backside of the fabric on low heat using a pressing cloth?
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