It’s quite impossible not only because it’s an intricate pattern, but also because it’s Chinese brocade – the world’s most slinky and stubborn fabric. Plus, it’s a mitred corner. And yet, here it is:
And here is another one, on the grain:
Can you see how it’s done?
What? 😲 Yes, humble zig-zag.
Put the right pane flat on the table. Fold the left pane on the seam line, wrong side inside. Now carefully place the folded left pane onto the right pane and match the pattern. Pin, pin, pin – the more pins the better.
Set your machine to zig-zag, 1.2mm wide with 1.5mm stitch length – the stitches need to be a little elongated, but not too much.
Zig-zag over the seam so that on the right the needle only goes into the single layer.
Now, that’s pretty good, but the miracle is yet to come: you can now open the seam. Lay it flat with the single layer seam allowance at each side. Iron it. 😏
But it’s zig-zag?! Yes, but tiny. On some fabrics it might create a small ridge, on others it falls flat completely – just like flatlock seam sewn with a capable overlocker.
Ok, so you’ve just zig-zagged right over the face of your fabric. How come you struggle to see the stitches? If you were to sew the same thing with straight stitch, it would immediately stand out.
It’s magic. On a busy background zig-zag blends in – what’s a few more little lines where there are already so many? Your eye is overwhelmed by the amount of detail, it looks for a larger picture and finds it in the pattern of the fabric that you’ve just so skillfully matched. It completely ignores those little lines of your zig-zag. But if you’d used straight stitch, well, that would have created a new pattern – a straight line – and your eye would have immediately picked that up.
Illusion by confusion. 😁