Different Causes of Seam Puckering

Different Reasons for Seam Puckering

What is Seam Puckering?

The unwanted waviness of the fabric along the seam line is called seam pucker or seam puckering. This may be apparent immediately after sewing. Most of the time, sewing threads are referred to as responsible for seam puckering. But, without sewing threads, there are so many reasons or causes for occurring seam puckering such as fabric structure, seam structure, needle size, feeding problem, uneven thread tension, and so on. This can be seen after sewing and sometimes after washing of garments. There is a great possibility of seeing seam puckering in case of more plies of fabric sewing together. This article has shown the main reasons for occurring seam puckering.


Reasons for Seam Puckering in the Garments:

The main reasons for occurring seam puckering have mentioned in the following:

  1. Variable or uneven stretch on fabric plies,
  2. Fabric dimensional instability,
  3. Extension of sewing thread,
  4. Sewing thread shrinkage,
  5. Fabric construction,
  6. Mismatched patterns.

All the above reasons have discussed below:

1. Variable or uneven stretch on fabric plies:

  • There is a great possibility of seeing seam pucker in case of more plied of fabrics sewing together.
  • Due to variable stretch on the fabric plies, they will not feed equally to the sewing machine and create seam pucker.
  • This type of seam puckering is seen for the limitation of the feed mechanism.
  • For example, it is very hard to remove seam pucker in a drop feed mechanism. To remove this, it must need to set a modern feed mechanism. In the drop feed system, it can be controlled by a skilled operator.

2. Fabric dimensional instability:

  • If the shrinkage of sewn fabric plies is not the same or equal then seam puckering will create after washing.
  • To avoid this, it must know the shrinkage property of different types of fabrics before sewing.
  • If the shrinkage percentage of the area of two pieces of fabric is more than two, then seam puckering will occur after sewing the fabrics together.

3. Extension of sewing thread:

  • Different types of tension are placed on sewing thread during the sewing of fabrics. Especially, a huge amount of tension is placed on the needle thread than the under thread. If the tension on the needle thread is higher than the under thread then seam pucker will produce.
  • Due to tension, the length of the thread is extended slightly. When the fabric is displaced or descends from the machine after sewing, shrinkage of thread and fabric are occurred due to the tendency of coming to their original position.
  • If the shrinkage percentage of thread and fabric are the same then there is no possibility of puckering. But if the shrinkage percentage of the thread is higher than the fabric, then there is the possibility of puckering.
  • It must need to give sufficient tension to the thread and fabric during sewing. Generally, by using less tension to the thread.

4. Sewing threads shrinkage:

  • Due to the variable shrinkage percentage of sewing thread and fabric, seam puckering will create after washing or ironing.
  • To protect this, it must know about the shrinkage percentage of fabric and thread before selection to sewing.
  • There is less possibility of occurring seam puckering when sewing is done by synthetic threads due to less shrinkage percentage of them.

5. Fabric construction:

  • When sewing is done by a needle to densely woven fabrics. There is happened puckering due to the shrinkage of fabric.
  • It is really hard to remove his from densely woven fabrics. The following are the actions that take place to reduce the puckering:
  • By using finer thread and needle.
  • By minimizing stitch density.
  • By cutting and sewing fabric on bias angle (15-20 to warp and weft thread).
  • By using chain stitch instead of lock stitch (if possible).
  • To change fabric (if possible).

6. Mismatched patterns:

  • Puckering will create when two different size patterns are sewn together.
  • The designer is responsible for this. But can be occurred due to the wrong selection of patterns.


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