When I took sewing classes in high school, the teacher had told us, “NEVER sew off of the fabric — it will damage the machine.” I believed that for years and years, and would always feel a little bit scared whenever I accidentally went a stitch too far. So, it was kind of a mind stretch when I came across this in The Complete Book of Sewing Shortcuts by Claire B. Shaeffer:
WOAH, I GOTTA TRY THIS!
It’s called chain stitching, and you do it by stitching off of one piece then inserting a new one to continue sewing. It’s a HUGE time saver, since I don’t have to fiddle with the machine or clip threads with every piece. Just make sure that you remember to back stitch at the beginning and end of every piece — I was so excited with this new technique that I completely forgot to do that myself.
Fie on you, old sewing teacher! Fie on you!