Coat Making – Anatomy of a tailor tack


Long and Short of Pattern Marking

“So, what exactly is a tailor tack?” you may ask.  There are different kinds of temporary stitches that tailors use, but the kind of tack I will demonstrate in this tutorial is a loopy stitch used in marking darts and other key points in garment construction.  With advances in technology tailor tacks have somewhat fallen out of fashion in favor of easier marking methods, such as washable markers and those that disappear with heat.   These are great for most fabrics, but for woolens and the some of the more delicate materials that may not tolerate chemical markers, making hand applied tailor tacks provides a sound option.

A tailor tack is made while the tissue pattern in still pinned to the face fabric.  Begin by locating the circles marking the dart.  Take a stitch through all three layers bringing the needle back up through to the surface leaving a 1 1/2″ – 2″ tail.

tailor tack

Repeat this step creating a large loop of thread of thread.  Snip off to create another tail.

making a tailor tack

Snip loop in center.

tailor tacks

Completed tailor tack.

creating a tailor tack

Repeat this process for each circle marking in the dart.

Imaking a tailor tack

Once darts and other desired marking are completed carefully remove tissue pattern piece.

making tailor tacks

The remaining two pieces of face fabric are joined by the tailor tack.  Gently lift the top piece from the bottom piece and clip the threads to release the two pieces being careful not to dislodge the marking threads.

making tailor tacks

With tailor tacks completed, I am now ready to apply interfacing to the face fabric.

Until next time, happy sewing!

4 responses »

  1. I’m a fan of tailor tacks – I use them for more or less all marking on any garment. Not the fastest method but very reliable.
    I bought some wool for a skirt the other day & spent ages steaming it with my iron. I think it’s better than just steam pressing as I did in the past. I love the smell of damp wool! Thanks for the tip.
    The skirt’s nearly finished – I’m hoping to wear it Christmas Eve.

    • I’m so glad to hear you were able to put one of my tips to use… that’s great!
      I can’t wait to see your skirt. I put the finishing touches on my coat yesterday and took it to the cleaners for a professional press. So it looks like we’ll both be wearing our new creations on Christmas Eve. Merry Christmas! And, be sure to take photos for your blog friends. 🙂

    • Thanks, I’m happy to share and glad to know that it might be of use to you. I’ve got plenty more tips on the way. I’m getting a little nervous about getting this project completed before Christmas, (maybe I should get off my computer and go sew) but oh well, if not I’ll have a nice new coat for the new year. 🙂

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