You may have heard of these under a different name. Stitch marks, mark stitches & tailors tacks are all the same thing. They are stitches put in to the cut pieces of any garment to mark important places for construction. (eg. hemlines & centre fronts). This means you don’t have to get your pattern out at a later date to see where these marks are. This can be a very time consuming & tedious job if you follow the patterns or numerous books on sewing. Done the professional way it is a quick & easy job which can be done in about 10mins. One of the secrets to doing this properly is to use basting cotton. I know you all use the old coloured cottons that you have left over, why buy another thread? Basting cotton is like no other cotton on the market, it is a bit heavier than normal thread, it is pure cotton & of a rough construction. This means when you put the stitches in they don’t fall out easily & if you use this thread for attaching two layers together, when you come to pull it out if it gets caught it breaks easily. It doesn’t cut in to your fabric as finer polyester thread would do.
So how do you use this for tailor tacks? You need a double piece of thread. Don’t cut the end of this cotton just break it from the reel.
1. Put in stitches along the line you wish to mark. They need to be approx. 3” (7.5cms) to 4” (10cms) apart. It isn’t necessary to do them every ½” (1.2cms). There is no need to go back over each stitch. The cotton will stay in with just one stitch.
2. Hold on to the needle at the end of your row of marking. Snip the first stitch leaving an end of approx. ½” (1.2cms). Pull the needle until the thread is approx. ½” (1.2cms) before the next stitch, then snip the stitch as before. Repeat this process until all the stitches are cut.
3. Take your pattern off carefully. Then pull the two layers of your cut piece apart by approx. 1/4” (6mm) Snip in between the layers. Hey presto tailor tacks in seconds.