Sunday, January 3, 2010


What is Flatlocking?
It is a serged seam that opens flat. It has many uses, not just decorative but functional as well. When constructing garments that have high loft or excessive bulk like fleece, fur or upholstery fabric this allows the seam to lay flat. Once the seam is serged then you gently tug the two pieces of fabric so that the seam lays FLAT. (If necessary use a pressing cloth and press the side that has the ladder or straight stitching.) Never place a hot iron on fleece unless you want to emboss with an iron print. :-)
By placing decorative thread in the upper looper you can embellish ready to wear garments like t-shirts, jackets and so on. You can piece squares together to create a quilt. There are many patterns available for this technique.

How do you set up the serger for a flatlock stitch. First check the machine manual for suggested settings. Most sergers achieve this stitch using the left needle, upper looper and lower looper for a 3 thread flatlcok. A 2 thread flatlock can also be used if desired.

The needle needs very little tension (between zero and one is a starting point), the upper looper at a normal setting, the lower looper needs to have excessive tension or very tight. The needle thread will form the ladder stitch on the back, the upper looper thread will lay flat on the right side of the fabric. The lower looper will be the thread that pulls the needle thread across the back and set the stitch for the upper looper thread.

If you have any questions about this serger stitch, just ask??????


  1. Do you have a pic of how to put, for instance, the front and back of pants together using flatlock?
    I've serged them together, and then flatlocked for a topstitched, but I can't quite wrap my mind around how to fold the fabric to use ONLY flatlock. That sure would save time!!

  2. Flatlocking requires that you place the fabric wrong sides together. Serging a curve takes practice for some - all fingers are working the fabric. ;-)

    If you are flatlocking for a decorative look then again you fold the fabric so that it is wrong sides together. The decorative flatlock will be on the right side of the garment. Try it on scrap fabric first.

  3. I heard that 2 thread flatlocking is much simpler to achieve but I have to have special attachment for it. I using Kenmore serger and it does not have any attachments, I don't think Kenmore even manufactures one. But looper does have a hole for attachment to be screwed into.
    Maybe you know what the attachment is best to fit my serger and where can i find it?


  4. Using a 2 thread or a 3 thread flatlock is a matter of choice. To achieve a 2 thread flatlock you must use an attachment that closes the eye of the upper looper. If that stitch is available for your serger then it would be in the box of accessories that came with the machine. Soemtimes it is a white plastic thing with a metal hook. When attached it closes the eye of the upper looper. Check your manual for 2 thread applications (rolled hem). If it is listed it will tell you about the attachment. Also in the front of the manual there usually is a listing of items them are included with the machine.