PUL can be a bit of a pain sticking to the machine plate or foot.
One of the best things I have done to help this situation is to use baking paper on the side that is sticking. You just lay the paper on top of the fabric under the needle foot (if it is sticking to the foot) or under the fabric, the bottom layer, so that the paper is the one touching the plate area.
By doing this you can sew and the fabric will slip easily. You will need to then tear the paper away after you have finished sewing, but this is easy compared with trying to force a sticky bit of fabric along where it doesn't want to go!
I found that if I cut the baking paper into strips rather than using the whole sheet is better too as then it didn't get too much in the way.
The best invention ever are glue sticks. You know the ones that you use for your children's craft? They are Fantastic for gluing together your nappy layers (at the edge) so that you can sew without using pins!.
The glue washes out in the first wash.
If you wish to use pins make sure that you only place the pins in the area OUTSIDE your sewing line. This will ensure that you don't put holes, which then equal potential leak points, in your nappies.
You can make your wipes out of a few fabrics.
I personally love the bamboo velour as it is beautiful and soft. The cotton velour runs a very close second.
The bamboo terry is also another good one. You can sew another fabric to the other side, like flanelette.
Some people sew a microfleece fabric on one side too. This is used for the wiping bit, then the other side of the wipe (be it bamboo velour or flanelette) is used as the cleaning side.
You wouldn't use microfleece on both sides as it is a non absorbing fabric so won't retain water so that you can actually clean bubs skin.
With FOE there is one side that has a definate weave and the other side is more fluffy and softer.
The weave goes in and is hidden, you will find as you sew it will naturally tend to fold easier this way.
Make sure that when you are sewing the areas where you are stretching the FOE, like the leg area, don't try and do the whole area in one go. Work your way along.
I work in an area of about 10cm's at a time.
I start off with the needle down, stretch out the FOE, then sew up to my fingers, stop, re-stretch and sew.
You also need to work out the amount of stretch you apply with each stretch and use this religiously other wise you end up with different sized legs.
What I do is - (this is when I am about to do the stretch areas.)
-Take hold of the FOE where it meets the edge lip of the sewing machine area facing me. This area is about 10cm in length from the needle to edge of the sewing machine.
-Stretch FOE to almost full length. If you don't stretch it enough you will not get the nice stretch therefore it won't gather the fabric in for you.
-sew up to fingers.
-start over again.
Different fabrics will mean you need to change the stretch too.
For example when making a cover with no inner the stretch can be lessened as there is not so much fabric that the FOE needs to gather. With brocade outer PUL with a microfleece inner you need to apply more stretch as there is quite a bit of fabric for the FOE to gather in.
Hemp and bamboo are both absorbent fabrics which can be used to make boosters. The top side of the fabric, once wet will not keep bub's skin dry. These are great for using in pocket nappies, or to boost your other types of nappies.
Two layers of either hemp or bamboo. These fabrics are both 30% more absorbent than cotton alone.
All you need to do is cut the desired size in each fabric (30cm x 30cm works well for most baby sizes) and either overlock the layers together.
If you only have a sewing machine the edges can be either straight stitched or zig zagged stitched.
To make your booster neat and easy to fold, sew two lines of straight stitching through both layers of fabric -equal distances apart -to form three sections.
Swimwear elastic is used mainly in the leg and waist area of nappies. It is used to bring these areas in to snugly fit against the body.
Elastic can be sewn in in two ways.
Sewn the full length.
Using either a zig-zag, or straight stitch if you don't have zig-zag, start at one end of your elastic. You need to make it so that you are sewing towards you. Catch the elastic by sewing back and forward a couple of times, this will create a good hold. Make sure that you have marked your pattern to show where the elastic starts and ends. This will ensure that your leg areas match in size.
Start sewing, stretching the elastic towards you with one hand as you sew along. I find that one hand needs to also be at the back of the fabric helping to feed it through. Make sure you don't pull too hard or your stitching will be too long and not completed correctly. Please be aware as you sew to keep the stretch consistent so that you get the stretch even across the area you are sewing. This also ensures that both your leg areas will be the same size.
Finish of the end by going back and forth to close the stitches over.
Sewn in a casing.
A casing is basically a tunnel into which your elastic runs through. Your casing needs to be created during the construction phase of your nappy. I have done this by using the microfleece lining, allowing extra microfllece in the leg/waist area when cutting so that I can make a casing for the elastic.
Elastic is sewn at one end of the casing, stitched over a couple of times to hold it in place. Elastic is then threaded through the casing, making sure that you have pre-cut your elastic to the size required.
Once threaded, sew the other end of the elastic at other end of casing. Now you have your elastic in the casing and a lovely neat hidden elastic area.
Once benefit of sewing in a casing is that you cut down on the amount of needle holes that are put in the leg area, especially if your casing is formed as part of the first sew through for the leg part of the nappy.
The best fabric to use with Snappi's are terry fabrics. As a snappi has tiny hook like clasps they need something to grab onto to hold the best.
Hemp terry, bamboo terry, cotton terry are the best choices. Velour fabric will work, but will not have as much grabability as the terry fabrics.
PUL, fleeces (hemp, bamboo, micro) and suedecloth fabric will not work with snappi's
When buying maxi-swrils, or variegated threads for your overlocker, you do not need to purchase enough for each spool holder on your machine.
If you just want the effect on your top layer you only need to place the variegated thread on your lower looper spool.
If you wish to have the effect on both top and bottom, you need a spool placed on both your upper and lower looper.
Another benefit of microfleece is that you can just cut and go, no sewing required!
Just buy your required amount, cut into rectangles - I find 15 x 30cm works well, and that is it! No need to sew as microfleece will not fray ever!