Friday, February 18, 2011

Gloves: fingers!

The tops of the fingers:
The next step in the glove making process is to stitch across the tops of each finger-tip.  This is a tiny little seam, but still pretty vital... so I basted all of these before sewing them on the machine.  Partly because as I mentioned before, my machine doesn't behave well with tiny little seams, and I feel I have a lot more control with hand-stitching.  In fact, the next time I do this I will probably stick with the precision of a hand-stitched seam and forgo the machine stitching for this bit!
I only have here a photo of the fingertips pinned together ready for sewing and didn't take any "after stitching" pictures...  that's me getting caught up in the trance of the sewing process, sorry!
The outside seam of the little finger is sewn down to the base at this point, but this is the only finger seam sewn in such a simple way...!

The gussets:
Now is the time to worry about those funny little gussets... as I said before I left cutting these out until I needed each one.  So, for example, I started with gusset D (out of D, E, and F for the three different finger "valleys") and cut out just the usual mirror image two of these and sewed these two gussets completely into their correct and final position on the glove before I even looked at gusset E.  I'm really glad I did this, because it could be sooooo easy to mix them up... even when you only have two of them!
The V seam in the middle is sewn right sides together on each one...
And then they are inserted into the appropriate part of the finger...
I'm not going to whitewash this.  This part is tricky and you have to pay close attention to make sure you are pinning the correct edges together.  Sewing these seams is fiddly.  Not trying to put anyone off, but just being honest here...  To sew these seams I started at the base of each finger "valley" at the V seam on each gusset and sewed out from there to end up at the finger tip.  This was a good way of controlling the placement of the gusset properly.  Plus to sew these seams I used a tip I had picked up in a Threads article once upon a time (I have no memory of the specific article, but it was a good tip I filed away mentally for situations like this):
Rather than commencing each seam with a few reverse stitches to secure the thread end like you would do normally, start sewing the seam from the beginning point (ie, right at the base of the V seam, and at the very apex of the finger "valley") and work a few stitches with the machine stitch length set to 1mm.  
When a few millimetres has been worked in this way, change the stitch length back to 2mm, which is the usual stitch length for most regular sewing and complete the seam up until the last little bit, about 3-4mm from the edge.  Change the stitch length back to 1mm for that last little bit.
This is a great technique and stood me in good stead here.  It results in a smooth even straight seam and avoids the risk of fabric-chewing that can occasionally be a problem with reverse stitching.  Also, in my experience, reverse stitching is a little less controlled that forward stitching and sometimes I've been frustrated with the fabric moving sideways a little when I try to use it... this problem is only going to be amplified when you are working with tiny precision seams like this, and anything you can do to eliminate the risk of wonky seams here is going to pay off, big time.  So I was really glad of this tip.
Despite it being fiddly sewing, I am the obsessive personality type that enjoys this sort of precision sewing and thrives on getting it all in as neatly and as perfectly as possible, so I really liked the challenge of this bit.  Plus I am pretty happy with how they turned out!
Tomorrow; finishing off


  1. Beautiful work. It makes me want to try making gloves.

  2. Very impressive! I am resisting the desire to make gloves.

  3. Wow, you're doing well. I've just posted about my own start on the glove muslin but I have to admit I'm not living up to your example.

    In fact this may just dent my sewing reputation ;-)

    And I have added some extra insight (I hope) on the thumb-shape issue.

  4. Your gloves are looking gorgeous, Carolyn!

    Unfortunately, my gloves are still... in pieces. Life has unfortunately "gotten in the way" this week. Hoping to get to it (and document! With photos!) SOON.

    I'm enjoying watching your process, tho! This is all very, VERY helpful!

  5. Neat! Though I'm gathering these might not be quite as addictive as knitting socks ... :)

  6. I have a really, really hard time with gussets. In sewing and in knitting socks. Thanks for the advice on them.

  7. Your gloves look great (and way too fiddly for me)! Look forward to the next pair!

  8. Oh wow! Found your blog via Elise posting about a swimsuit you'd made and am amazed, never would've thought about making gloves! And now I'm just going to go through all the rest of your posts...:)

  9. Hey! I just wanted to know... Did you cut TWO of each gussets? So instead of having three gussets you had six? It says cut two of each on the VOGUE pattern I have! SO CONFUSED! :)) Your gloves are sooo cool! :))