Thursday, June 2, 2011

Getting all Couture-y - A Hand-Rolled Hem

There are lots of options for finishing the free edge of a flounce, but not all of them I like.  Sometimes the inside needs to look as neat as the outside.  For my current project, OK - one of my current projects, the one in emerald silk georgette, I'm getting all couture-y and sewing a hand rolled hem.  I like the finished effect which is invisible from the right side, and and visible only as a fine edge on the reverse:


It's a little fiddly, and at one hour per flounce it would multiply the cost tenfold from a garment costing perspective, but this one's just for me.  Plus it means I have a reason not to go outside and do the paint-stripping! 

I did it like this: 
I found it easiest to hold the edge like so - with my thumb folding the edge of the chiffon over slightly, and my outer fingers holding the other end with a slight tension:


Pick up one thread, and then the edge of the fold with the needle, here's a closer look:

I've taken a bit much of the fold here, it's best to take a bit less than this
and draw the needle and thread through:


You can do one stitch at a time, or stitch a few:


and then draw up the thread - as you do the fabric rolls over nicely to form a hem enclosing the raw edge and  your thread:


You can leave the hem rolled or press it flat- and I'm not sure which way is 'correct".  Rolled it gives a bit of body, but I pressed mine flat as I found the edge of the georgette draped better.  It is going to be the edge of the flounce on this top from Burda August 2009 so it needs to drape symmetrically, hopefully:


I've cut the whole top double thickness with the hem on the fold, and I think I will just bag the whole lot out. This is a good top to use up this fabric remnant that I've had for a long time - ex bridesmaids dresses 2005 to be precise! 

Have any of you already made this one?  Or the long sleeve version?

By the way I've made a new rule:  If I use up two pieces of stash, I'm allowed to buy one new piece of fabric.  How coincidental convenient that I've seen something I simply must have!


17 comments:

  1. That looks lovely. I don't think I have the patience myself, but good for you!

    I have seen this pattern made up a few times and can't quite decide whether to make it for myself. Have you checked PR for reviews? I like the flounce, but otherwise, the pattern has little shape, so I have wondered if it is only good for twigs? Or maybe it needs to be tucked in? Your chosen colour is gorgeous.

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  2. That looks very beautiful! Sometimes I really like to do some hand sewing, it's therapeutic!

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  3. Very nice job. You must have true patience to do this, your results show the payoff!

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  4. I really like the look of this. It looks so neat and clean and there's not any sort of heavy hem to weigh down the ruffle. I'm not sure I'd ever actually do it-- maybe for something really special. I'm mentally bookmarking it.

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  5. you've chosen a lovely pattern!

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  6. Thank you for this. I've failed at curved, silk edges about 2 or 3 times. I'll mark this and if I ever get the guts up again to do a hand rolled hem, will read this before starting :)

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  7. Great rolled hem, And it looks perfect! ANd I also love the pattern.

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  8. Very nice tutorial, and wonderful looking results; thank you :)

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  9. Fiddley sewing is just perfect for TV watching. Plus, it sure beats paint-stripping!

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  10. I do so love a hand rolled hem! This is going to be gorgeous! Really lovely tutorial! Right into my bookmarks. xoxo, Sunni

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  11. Fantastic photo tutorial - thanks very much!

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  12. I think there's no improvement on a hand-rolled hem... I like your fabric rule. I think I'll adopt it too.

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  13. Hi Sherry

    I have made the long sleeve version, in a stretchy cotton. With that fabric the flounce was a bit trickier but i like the result. You can see it here:

    http://petitejosette.blogspot.com/2010/12/finished-project-blouse-08-2009-118.html

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  14. Great tutorial! i like hand sewing, I should try it out in my next projects!

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  15. Thank you for the thoughtful progression of pictures. Very timely as I am hemming my silk slip project today (hopefully) and plan to roll the hem.

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  16. The fabric is beautiful and worthy of a little hand stitching.

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  17. OMG! That rolled hem reminds me on my apprenticeship 30(!) years ago. My forewomans (right word?) hobby was silk painting and I always had to make these rolled hems of her silk scarfs. ;-)
    I am surprised that you are using all these old techniques which are exactly those I learned. Today I am interested in sewing faster and I adore my serger very much! :-)))
    Anyway - you really make lovely clothes which are always sewn well.

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