Sewing A French Dart

This week I thought I'd run through a few tips for sewing a French dart. I have taken a lot of this from Reader's Digest Complete Guide to Sewing (a must have!).

1. Mark the dart on the wrong side of the fabric. Then staystitch 3mm (1/8 in) inside each stitching line. Do this by sewing to the point of the dart and taper to meet 2.5 cm (1 in) from the point of the dart.

2. Slash through the centre of the dart to where the staystitching intersects. Sometimes the pattern will already have the centre section of the dart removed - if so you won't need to slash.

3. Pin the dart matching both dart legs. Stitch dart to the point.

4. I like to chain off the dart point. I do this by reducing my stitch length to 1.5 mm as I get near to the point of the dart, I then continue stitching off the dart to create a chain. Then I lift the presser foot and stitch into the fold of the dart to finish.

5. Clip seam allowances to allow dart to curve smoothly.

6. Press using tailors ham.

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