What Is Staystitching?
Staystitching is a row of regular machine stitching applied along curved, angled and unstable edges to prevent them from stretching and losing their shape during the handling and stitching process. It is conventionally applied immediately after separating the pattern from the fabric pieces.
Where And How To Apply Staystitching:
The most common areas that require a staystitch are the neckline, armhole, waistline curves and any other uniquely curved seam edges, especially those that are inward-shaped.
If working with loosely-woven unstable fabric, staystitching should be applied along all seam edges, including the straight ones.
Staystitching is applied within the seam allowance, at about 1/8” from the actual seamline. It should not be visible on the finished garment as it is used purely to stabilize and maintain the fabric cut’s original shape, and ensure a smooth construction process.
Staystitching is used on both woven and stretch knit fabrics.
In the case of knits, this stabilizing stitch is applied along all seam edges to prevent stretching across the entire fabric cut.
The staystitched fabric piece should then be checked against its corresponding paper pattern and any differences should be adjusted.
If the staystitch compressed the fabric edges into shorter lengths, clip through a few stitches using your seam ripper and loosen up the stitched fabric edges gently until they match those on the paper pattern.
Vice versa, if the staystitched edge has stretched in the application process, pull the stitches by the loose threads on each end until the edges match the corresponding ones on the paper pattern.
The final adjusted fabric cut should be the perfect replica of its corresponding sewing pattern.