What are Bar Tacks?
Bar tacks are used to attach and reinforce areas such as pocket openings, handles or belt loops. Bar tack sometimes also indicate that a seam has been stabilized by sewing horizontally across the seam several times, which prevents the seam from unravelling.
How are Bar Tacks made?
- Selecting proper thread: The first step is to choose a sturdy and appropriate thread that matches the fabric weight and desired aesthetic. Polyester or nylon thread is commonly used due to their strength and durability. Thread color(s) that complement or contrast with the fabric to create a visually pleasing result are also important elements to consider.
- Setting stitch length and width: Before bar tacks are sewn, the stitch length and width on the sewing machine are set correctly to achieve the desired density and width of the bar tack. Typically, a shorter stitch length is preferred for bar tacks, ranging between 1.0mm to 2.5mm, depending on the fabric thickness and the level of reinforcement required. The stitch width is typically set to zero or very minimal to create a compact cluster of stitches.
- Reinforcing the designated area: The fabric is positioned under the machine's presser foot, aligning it with the desired area for the bar tack. Next, the bar tack is sewn horizontally across the area, gradually building up the stitches to create a dense cluster. Key is to ensure that the stitching extends beyond the targeted area to provide ample reinforcement.
- Securing the ends: To prevent unraveling, reinforcing the start and end points of the bar tack by sewing a few backstitches or sewing in place is crucial. This ensures the stitches are securely anchored, preventing them from coming undone over time.