Top Tip: An alternative to tailor tacks?

Confession time….I’m a lazy gal at heart. I’m always looking for quicker and easier ways to do things. As you probably know if you read this blog regularly, I’ve taken to using hole reinforcers on my tissue patterns in a bid to prevent the tearing that can occur when I tailor tack through those little dots that mark dart points and the like. It occurred to me on my most recent make (finished today but yet to be blogged) that I could take this one step further and use them to mark my dots on the fabric itself. Thus dispensing with the need to tailor tack at all. Yay for that!

So here are my dart point dots, marked with the hole reinforcers. Passing a pin through the centre of the dot (below right)….

Shows me exactly where the corresponding mark should go on the reverse of my fabric. Now for the clever bit! Slip a hole reinforcer over the pin….

….and stick down! When it comes to assembling the dart, (or joining any other dots) pass the pin through the centre of the hole reinforcers that now mark each dart point; and then simply slip them off the ends of the pin before pining the dart as normal.

No need for tailor tacks or chalk or markers of any kind. I used this method to mark all of the dots (not just the darts) on this make and it was super quick and worked like a dream. The two key things to remember are to always place the “markers” on the wrong side, (avoids sandwiching them together between layers when they are placed RS together) and remove them before sewing. (I had what looked like a polo sticking out of the side seam at one stage, doh!). I’m definitely getting value for money out of this pack of hole reinforcers. Turns out they are quite a handy place to mark down the names of the pattern pieces too. The waistband on this make consisted of 8 separate pieces; and marking on them which one was which, helped me ALOT!

Which brings me onto this make. My first pair of “from scratch” trousers! All I’ll say for now is that I am seriously impressed with the fit of this pattern. What’s more, I have a copy to give away to one lucky reader. More on that once I get some pics done 😉

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  1. aem2 July 1, 2013

    This is genius. Genius, I tell you!

    Now I’m off to the office supply store…

  2. didyoumakethat July 1, 2013

    Love that fabric! Can’t wait to see your trews.

  3. superheidi July 1, 2013

    yes, genius it is!

  4. Madalynne July 1, 2013

    I can’t wait to see the final outcome of these pants that you used this trick for!

  5. Amy July 1, 2013

    What a brill idea! Wonder if the Amazon fairy can bring me some for tomorrow? Cheers for the tip! 🙂

  6. Craft Sanctuary July 1, 2013

    Such a good idea!

  7. Josie and May July 1, 2013

    Cracking idea! *rushes to find pattern that has tailor tacks*

  8. MrsC (Maryanne) July 1, 2013

    Clever!!! I told my fitting class on Saturday about your reinforcing hole idea, they think it is awesome too!

  9. tialys July 1, 2013

    Great idea! I usually do tailors’ tacks but then keep finding little bits of thread all over the place afterwards which are often hard to get out so I shall definitely try this out. Thank you for sharing.

  10. Judith July 1, 2013

    Smart thinking! And big thanks for sharing…J

  11. thewardrobesurgeon July 1, 2013


  12. July 2, 2013

    This is such a good idea. Thank you for sharing it.

  13. Lori July 2, 2013

    Thanks for the great idea.

  14. Adrienne July 2, 2013

    Great tip, thanks for sharing!

  15. Technicolor Cutie July 2, 2013

    Magical!! Good thinking.

  16. Renée Boyd July 2, 2013

    I’m going to try this! I just had a nightmare of Tailor tacking yesterday on another project of stretch knit lace. Trying to create a dart that couldn’t be marked with fabric marker or chalk, so hopefully this’ll work

  17. Mellie July 2, 2013

    I’ve had a box of these for at least 10 years in my drawer. I shall certainly now start using them.

  18. sushidog July 2, 2013

    You are a stone cold genius; I had already adopted your idea of using them to reinforce patterns, and will be trying this too! Thank you!

  19. Cosmo July 3, 2013

    brilliant! found this through pinterest and so glad I clicked through.

  20. vicki July 8, 2013

    That is totally ingenious. Thanks for sharing

  21. Suzie W August 5, 2013

    Thank you for this tip, a great idea. I used this when making some shorts this weekend and credited you with it on my blog post today 🙂


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