Thursday, April 4, 2013

How to sew over a hump


Has this ever happened to you? You discover after sewing over bulk your stitches are either extra long (skipped stitches) or very small?

Certainly skipped stitches may result from many, many combination of factors but if you constantly get them only in places where there's a bulk, chances are I can help you.

The image above gives a good example of how your stitches might be very small. See where the arrow is pointing at? The foot doesn't look level, right? 

Here I've placed my hump helper and now the foot is level and sewing is so much smoother.

p.s. you did not see any lint or dust on my sewing machine. it's on your monitor.

My hump helper is really just a scrap of bag handle. I know it looks horrible and all but I've been using it for a few years and this is really how I get my stitches to look good whenever I need to sew over bulk on my bag.

This is a jean a ma jig which is a hump helper for sewing jeans. I bought it many years ago when I was mending hubs' jeans. I wanted to use it as a hump helper for sewing my bags but I didn't like how I can't change the thickness of the jean a mag jig. I mean, my bulk varies in thickness.

If you would like to make your own hump helper, here's how:

Cut a strip of fabric 4.75" wide by 8" long.

Fold fabric right side together along the length, halving the width. Sew the two long sides together.

Iron seams open and keep seams centered.

Turn tube right side out. You can use a safety pin or a tube turner. I used my fingers to do it! Then you iron again, still keeping seam line centered. Cut thin or medium batting - the width slightly smaller than width of tube - mine is a little under 2" and 10" long.

Insert batting into tube. Top stitch down each of the long sides. Cut off excess batting.

Your hump helper can now be used.

Fold once for small bulk.

Fold twice for thicker bulk. And so on. The idea is to keep the foot level.

How do I know when to use the hump helper? Any places before and after a bulk are where it's needed most. Yes, you can place the hump helper in front of the presser foot as well. It's all about getting it balanced.

Some people grab a strip of fabric and fold it a few times to get the right thickness and that's their hump helper. I prefer my handy hump helper with its variable thickness. I keep it by my sewing machine all the time. Do you use a hump helper?


Bag Patterns at my Etsy shop

For more Applique Resources
For more Tutorials


pennydog said...

This is a good idea, I'm definitely going to give this a go as I always get tiny stitches when attaching straps...

Bethany said...

I never realized that was why I had the stitch problem around bulky spots. My machine has a button you push that keeps the foot level as you sew. now that I know it has a purpose I'll be pushing it much more often. Thanks for the help! That always drove me crazy!

Anonymous said...

I never realised why I had that problem! AMAZING! Yet more sewing know how to add to my brain!

Anna said...

Thanks for this tip, Jane. A simple solution to an annoying problem.

Anonymous said...

What a great post. Thanks for sharing.

Unknown said...

Wow, I run into this problem all the time! I'm definitely trying this next time I sew something bulky. Thanks so much for sharing!


Related Posts with Thumbnails

My Bag Pattern Shop

My Applique Patterns

My Embroidery Patterns