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Topic: How to sew a curved hem?  (Read 5955 times)
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purringcat
« on: January 15, 2011 12:53:45 AM »

Hi guys, this might be a stupid question, but how would I sew a curved hem? I don't even know if that's the right term for what I mean, haha. If I was to sew, say, a t-shirt or something, how do I sew the curved neckline so it doesn't have any raw edges or anything? I don't have a serger, btw. Because it's curved, when I try to fold it over to make a hem, it wrinkles and isn't a smooth line any more. What am I missing?
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badgerbear
« Reply #1 on: January 15, 2011 04:09:35 AM »

So with necklines it depends, a V neck is the easiest but the principle is the same. on the point where you hit the v (or a curve) cut a tiny tiny triangle out of your seam allowance (be very careful not to go past your seam allowance) and that way when you sew  and are going round the curve where it would wrinkle you should get a nice neat curve as you go. I hope this helps (and makes sense!) good luck!  Cheesy
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to craft is to live!
N30Nb100d
« Reply #2 on: January 15, 2011 10:47:46 AM »

Typically on a t-shirt neckline the hem isn't just folded over but instead, it has a little strip of material (binding) that covers the edge. When the material you're using is stretchy, you can just cut a strip of it (making sure it stretches the long way) to use as the binding. You'd stretch the binding as you sew it over the raw edge so that it keeps the neckline from sticking out and will be down smooth.
If you google how to sew bias binding that should explain how to attach it over the raw edge. For a non-stretch fabric it has to be cut on the "bias" but for a stretchy fabric it doesn't matter.
When doing a curved hem otherwise, especially on a fabric that isn't stretchy, you can make little tucks on the underside whenever there's a wrinkle forming (it happens because the edge you're sewing down is longer than the flat fabric you're sewing it to).
There's other ways to do it, but those are a couple.
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stitchintime
« Reply #3 on: February 07, 2011 10:26:16 AM »

My tip is:  make spray starch and the iron your friends. Make tiny little snips around the neckline on the raw edge of the fabric about 1/2 in. apart.  It will help the fabric lay flat.  Fold it, spray some starch and iron the heck out of it.  You can hand sew basting stitches to hold it down before you machine stitch, too.  It will show you where you might have bunching or puckering.  Snip a few more notches in these areas.  Hope this helps.
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Cheesamaburger
« Reply #4 on: February 07, 2011 11:10:20 AM »

The snips previously suggested are the orthodox way. Starch and ironing the heck out of things is also really useful. Sometimes I do those things, but sometimes I do something else.

Sometimes I like to sew a basting line (along the hem) with the largest setting on my machine. Then I snug it up so that there are teeny tiny gathers until the folded over part is the same length as the part it's getting sewn onto. The gathers end up so small that you don't see them in almost all instances. This works super well for stuff like circular capes and dresses or skirts where you're doing a rolled hem.
 

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baileemartini
« Reply #5 on: February 07, 2011 04:46:26 PM »

Sometimes I like to sew a basting line (along the hem) with the largest setting on my machine. Then I snug it up so that there are teeny tiny gathers until the folded over part is the same length as the part it's getting sewn onto. The gathers end up so small that you don't see them in almost all instances. This works super well for stuff like circular capes and dresses or skirts where you're doing a rolled hem.

never thought to try that, i have this problem with skirt hems. going to try your solution!
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Cheesamaburger
« Reply #6 on: February 10, 2011 05:03:15 PM »

Now you know one of the biggest secrets in my sewing-bag of tricks!

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