How To Sew Spandex With A Serger

When it comes to sewing spandex with a serger, the process is not that difficult. All you need is the right set of techniques and tools to get the sewing work done.

Whether you want to make a superhero costume or any other clothing, sewing spandex with a serger is pretty compelling, and it’s also one of the best ways to learn how to sew spandex.

If you are interested to learn how to do so, the information provided in this particular document will help you.

How To Sew A Spandex With A Serger

You do not need to carry extra knowledge to sew the spandex with the help of a serger. There are several steps you need to follow when it comes to sewing spandex.

It will enable you to get sewing work done without experiencing any issues or interruption when you follow these steps. Look below!

Step 1: Preparing the spandex fabric for sewing

Before you start the sewing process, the first thing you need to do is pre-wash the fabric. Depending on the type of material the spandex is blended with, it might shrink a little when you wash it for the first time.

So, to prevent the finished garment from shrinking when you wash it, you must clean the fabric right before sewing it. For instance, if you have tight spandex, you can wash it with warm water and dry it low.

On the other hand, for spandex or silk spends, make sure to wash the material with your hands and in cold water. After that, hang outside for air dry.

Step 2: Prepping for the sewing spandex

After you have done washing for the material, the next thing you need to do is choose the right needle for the sewing process. Universal sewing needles can sew stretch, but there are needles designed for various stretched fabrics.

Stretch and jersey needles come with ballpoint ends, which prevent the fabric from tearing. The structure of the needle helps in avoiding the drop stitches. Make sure to test your stitches on all the new materials.

When you are sewing along the cross-grain or grain of the knit, the stitches might come out differently. That is why you need to take that into account while sewing.

Step 3: Cut the fabric with a scissor

It’s pretty tricky to cut the spandex fabric, but it’s also essential to obtain straight edges. Be sure to utilize sharp scissors or a rotary cutter when you are missing the material.

You should place the spandex fabric on a cutting mat if you are using a rotary cutter.

Step 4: Pinup the fabric with ballpoint pens

When you pin the spandex with ballpoint pens, you can easily avoid damages from taking place. These pins have rounded tips and will not sever the threads within the material.

Even the ballpoint pins will slide easily between the material, but it is still an excellent idea to place the pins on the seam allowances. By doing so, the holes will not be visible if you damage the fabric.

Step 5: Check if the stretchiest part of the fabrics goes around the body

If you are sewing or sewing and spinning the spandex fabric, you must position the most flexible part of the material. Doing so will help in wrapping around the body.

Remember, the spandex material comes in a two and 4-way stretch. The two-way stretch material will stretch horizontally, and the four-way stretch fabric will stretch vertically and horizontally.

Make sure to tug the fabric with your hands before sewing it spandex and learn how it stretches.

Step 6: Thread your serger with the all-purpose polyester thread

You don’t have to use an elastic thread for the spandex. It’s because you will utilize a stitch setting that will enable the material to stretch.

The all-purpose polyester thread stands out as an excellent choice for sewing spandex. Go for a polyester thread that matches perfectly with the shade of your spandex material.

Step 7: Set up the serger to a narrow zigzag stitch

The little zigzag stitch will work perfectly with the spandex material. It’s because it will deliver a slack that will permit the spandex to stretch.

Try to set your serger to the zigzag stitch and adjust the length of the stitch to 0.5-millimeters. If you are using a blended fabric, which is not that stretchy, you can adjust the zigzag stitch to a longer length, such as 1.5-millimeters.

But it’s crucial to keep the zigzag stitch within 0.5-millimeters to 1.5-millimeters. Doing so will enable the seams to stretch with the material.

Step 8: Don’t pull on the fabric while sewing

When working with numerous fabrics or materials, it will be pretty easier to pull the fabric taut while sewing it. But this particular method will not work with spandex, as it can cause puckering.

Do not think of pulling the spandex fabric when you are working with it. Also, make sure the material doesn’t hang over the edge of the work surface.

How to Sew Spandex Without the Serger

You can sew the spandex easily with the help of a serger. But there are several ways through which you can sew the fabric without the serger. Look below!

Step 1: Use a sewing machine

When you don’t own a serger to sew the spandex, don’t worry; you can use a home sewing machine as a replacement. The sewing machine will work perfectly with the proper technique or method.

Just like the serger, there are several types of sewing techniques you can choose from, such as straight seam and other possibilities.

Step 2: Utilize a walking foot attachment.

When you are sewing spandex on a home machine, the seam might get wavy or pucker. It’s because the top layer of the material is not feeding that fast through the machine and getting stretched as it keeps sewing.

If you encounter this type of problem, you must opt for a walking foot attachment. The walking foot attachment comes with a walking-feet, which mirrors the movement of the lower feet.

The walking foot attachment will be a lot helpful during topstitching stretch or for sewing slightly sticky fabric, such as faux leather.

Step 3: Sewing the panels

If you are sewing a super-suit or a superhero suit, the order you attach the pattern pieces might differ significantly to some extent.

If the suit has side seams, you must assemble the back and front completely before sewing them together. It’s also an excellent idea to sew all the small pieces before sewing the large ones.

Above everything, the best order of operations will depend heavily on the individual designs.

Step 4: The hemming

When it comes to finishing the raw edges, such as the neckline, cuffs, armhole, ankles, etc., you must create a hem by folding over the edge of the fabric. Try to fold the material at least once or twice and stitch it down.

You are free to use any stretch stitches, which are available on your machine. It will be much better to opt for a triple straight stitch because others will create a visible stitch pattern on the fabric’s exterior.

The zigzag style stitches, on the other hand, might give birth to a puckered hem.

Supplies needed for sewing spandex

Before starting the sewing spandex process, there are several items that you need to get first. Look below:

  1. Needles: The needle you will use for the serger stands out as a stretch sewing machine. These needles are ideal for heavy, light, or medium-weight knits.
  2. The Thread: When it comes to sewing spandex, you might choose the polyester thread for the job. If you are using a serger, you do not need any particular thread, but only the normal polyester serger threads will do the trick.
  3. Sharp scissors: Always keep sharp scissors beside you. Dull scissors might provide uneven cuts and will destroy the shape of the fabric.
  4. Color of the thread: The shades of the threads will depend on the color of the spandex material. If the spandex carries a solid hue, try to sew the seams with the same color.
  5. Teflon foot: The Teflon foot is an optional item. But having this product beside you will help you immensely when you are sewing the finishes of the spandex.

What are the reasons to use a serger for sewing spandex?

Even though many people use a home sewing machine for all their sewing work, a serger is a device that is often ignored. Sewing with a serger, especially spandex, will reward you with many benefits.

When you use a serger, fabrics like spandex become more manageable and make the entire sewing process more accessible. Also, using the serger will get the sewing work done within a matter of minutes.

What are the tips to follow when using spandex?

If it’s your first time sewing spandex with a serger, make sure the fabric feeds into the machine naturally.

You can also press the fabric from the front so that it feeds right under the presser foot to tackle the tendency of the wrinkle. The only time you can stretch the fabric is while trying to ease the length of the material.



I'm Jessica Flores, a professional fashion designer and an expert seamstress. Crafting has always been a deep-seated passion of mine, one that has flourished and evolved over the years. I've dedicated considerable time to both studying and practicing in the realm of fashion and sewing, amassing a wealth of experience and skills. It brings me great joy to share these insights and experiences with you all, hoping to inspire and foster a similar passion for the art of sewing.

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