Sewing Seam Finishes & Hems

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Duration: 22:51

Janet Pray demonstrates two seaming techniques and one hem technique to help your sewing projects look crisp and professional while eliminating frustration.

Flat Felled Seam

The flat felled seam, often seen in blue jeans, is solid because of its double-folded construction, which also encases the seam allowances. It also creates a decorative element of two lines of topstitching on the right side.

Many sewists shy away from this seam, as it entails several extra steps of trimming and pressing. However, the two-step technique demonstrated by Janet is fast and easy.

French Seam

French seams are generally used on sheer fabrics or fabrics that fray easily. This seam is simple and encases the raw edges neatly.

This two-step process begins by stitching the fabric’s wrong sides together and using a narrower seam allowance. Janet demonstrates how to press the fabric, flip the fabrics with the right sides together, then stitch the seam again to encase and protect the raw edges from fraying.

Straight Stitch Hem

The straight stitch hem is simple and easy, sometimes called the double fold hem. Janet demonstrates how to fold the raw edge twice toward the wrong side and topstitch the first fold. One important tip Janet gives is to stitch from the right side. The folds will not be visible as you’re sewing, but you can feel the edge of the fold, ensuring an even stitch on the right side.

The process is the same for stitching a straight stitch hem on a curve. Stitching from the right side is extra beneficial because it allows the feed dogs to ease in the excess fabric.

For more hem techniques, check out How to Hem Jeans, How to use a Rolled Hem Foot, and How to Sew a Blind Hem Stitch.

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