A Serger or Overlock is a sewing machine that trims and encloses the seam allowance or edge of the fabric in a thread casing all in one step. A Serger uses 3 to 5 different bobbin threads and a top thread to sew the seam. The width, number of threads and stitch density are some of the many variables on a Serger. The seams provide a professional look to the inside of garments and are also used for decorative edgings. While there are techniques in quilting that can use a serger, a serger is not necessary for quilting. As with all sewing machines, there is a learning curve for using a serger. A serger cannot replace a domestic sewing machine.
Benefits of a Serger
- A Serger is a great machine if you make garments.
- A serger is especially valuable when sewing knit fabrics due to the stretch allowed in the stitching.
- With a serger, you can make a rolled hem and gather fabric.
- Special techniques for quilting with a serger include quilt as you go projects, or rag quilts, but in general quilters do not like the bulk of additional thread in the seams of a quilt.
- Some domestic machines have stitches similar to those used by sergers that will finish the edges of seams and sew a seam that has stretch for knits.
Supplies and Tools for a Serger
General supplies for a Serger are:
- Serger Thread, usually on a code and has minimal lint.
- Long sewing tweezers
- Small screwdriver
- Needle Threaders, Sewing Machine Needles
- Many sergers come with tools and a variety of presser feet..
What I wish I Knew When I Started using a Serger
Using a SERGER has a bit of a learning curve, patience is the key. Who knew what all you could use a serger for when making a quilt???