August 29, 2013

Tutorial: Easy Narrow Hem

As I mentioned here, I love narrow hems.
A narrow hem is one that is approximately 1/8" or 1/4" and is used on men's shirts, slips, lingerie, napkins, and other items that need just a hint of a hem.
Commonly a special sewing machine foot is used to achieve the narrow hem. But the hem can be done a couple of ways without an additional foot. 
This is my trick/tip to achieve the narrowest of narrow hems. 

Note: This method utilizes a serger/overlock, however there is another method I use that does not require additional machines I will post that soon. 

Step one: 
Serge the raw edge to be hemmed. 
Depending on the hem allowance you may want to calculate the amount of the hem allowance that you serge off. 
Example: A common narrow hem is two 1/4" (0.635 cm) folds;  if your hem allowance is 1 1/4" (3.175 cm) you would want to serge off 3/4" (1.905 cm). 

I like to set my serger at its most narrow stitching width and using only three threads. Thus producing the narrowest of narrow hems.

Step two:
Fold and press the serged edge to the wrong side of the garment.

Step three: 
Fold and press the edge a second time to the wrong side of the garment, encasing the serged edge. Pin to secure for stitching. 
Step four: 
Edge-stitch hem. 

This is a tedious task, if you miss the edge the hem will not be secured all around. Like this error: 
Whoopsie, I sewed off the edge.

Step five: 
Press on right side of garment to embed stitching line. 

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