How to Machine-Sew Steeks - dummies

By Mary Scott Huff

If you’re knitting a sweater or other garment, you need to create steeks wherever you have a seam. When machine-sewing your steeks, before you cut a piece of knitted fabric, secure the knitted stitches around the planned cut using a sewing machine.

1Measure and mark for armhole steeks.

Armhole steeks are simply straight slots cut into the sides of the completed body tube. Measure the tops of your completed sleeve tubes, and then mark the armholes to the same depth with waste yarn, as shown

2Measure and mark for neckline curves.

Place waste yarn markers for your neckline curve, measuring the neckline depth specified in your pattern, down from the top, then across the bottom, and then diagonally across the corner.

3Mark for center front openings.

Place a yarn marker directly down the middle of your center front steek.

4With the machine set to a medium-length straight stitch, sew down the center of each column of stitches adjoining the yarn marker.

It’s easier to see machine-sewn steeks from the wrong side of the knitting. Check before you cut. Although machine-sewn steeks are versatile and durable, they are unsightly, too. Plan on covering them either with a knitted binding (for garment edges) or with ribbon or bias tape (for inside steek edges).

5Sew another set of 2 stitching lines down the column of stitches 2 columns away from the first.

This amounts to the outside pass.

6Cut vertically through the waste yarn marker with sharp sewing shears.

Learning to make professional-looking steeks gives your garments a finished quality.

7Cut the neckline curves close to the 2nd row of machine stitching.

Follow the curve closely as you cut.