Friday, October 10, 2014

Top Stitching a Diaper and Sewing Elastics

In the cloth diaper sewing group I'm in on facebook, we were asked how we all do our elastics. I seem to be in the minority who sews elastics in when they do top stitching. She asked if I could take pictures and I decided to make a little tutorial on how I did it.
It would be easier to show you in a video but we seem to have lost the charger to the digital camera I use for that. And since I don't have a way to mount my cell phone to my head hopefully this will do.

First note my diaper is turned right side out and waiting on elastics. This is a pocket so will have back elastic and leg elastic on both sides.

mark your elastics per your pattern. I use a washable crayon. 

Pin your back elastic on the marks. I leave about 1/4 inch extra beyond the pins.  This is it without any other pins all bunched up.

Stretched out.  Now with the diaper stretched use your fingers to move the elastic up against your seam allowance. And place a pin directly underneath. repeat across till the pin hold the elastic in place. Check to make sure you aren't pinning the elastic by accident.

I lifted the pocket opening to try to show you how this looks inside. It's hard to see but the elastic is not pinned to the diaper but is held in place by the pins if that makes sense. 

All pinned in place.

Repeat the pinning at the elastic caking marks for the leg. 

I use my knees and hold one wing with them, then use one hand to stretch the diaper out and the other to place my pins. you're doing the same thing where you push the elastic into the seam allowance, and pin just below it. 

Here's the leg all pinned and ready to sew. 

You can sort of see that the pins are not right against the edge. You'll be sewing in the area of fabric on your pins. 

One leg done. 

Repeat on other side and you are ready to sew. 

Ok so I start at the back elastic tacking mark and sew down, reverse, then back down tacking it in place. 

Pivot and sew across the pinned area. I'm bad and sew over my pins, but you can definitely remove them as you sew just make sure to pull your fabric taught so the elastic stays where it is pinned and to sew slowly.
Sew across the area of fabric my finger is pointing to.

Showing the stitching so you can see where I'm talking about sewing. 

Go back up the next tack mark, forward, then back again, turn and pivot the diaper and carry on top stitching ...

around the wings and to your leg elastic.  

Turn your diaper again and tack your elastic down. I sew in reverse once then back forward. 

Pivot back and sew along your pin area again. 

I was trying to get a good photo of my needle plate so you could see where I'm sewing. I think that's the 6/8th mark. 

Diaper slightly stretched so you can see the finished leg. I forgot to take a photo of the other end of the leg elastic. But it's the same process. So you just pivot and tack the elastic down then continue top stitching around the front of the diaper. 

Other side has been reached. So I tack the elastic down, reverse, and forward, then follow the same process of sewing on the pinned area. around the 6/8th mark.

Reached the last elastic marking. tack down, reverse,

and go forward, then continue top stitching... 

Till you reach your starting point with the elastic tack mark on the back of the diaper.  Finish your threads how you like and clip them, now all that's left is your snaps or velcro on the wings and you are set.

Hope that makes sense!

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