Saturday, June 22, 2013

Cheating catches up with you.....The Strangled Hem

What a bother, what if I don't want to cut the selvage off?  No one will ever see it and it has such a nice finished edge.  What if I just want to roll the hem up and rehem it?  No one will ever see it.

Ah yeah, they will.  Remember this?
bad hem
She had already hemmed it once and determined that it was too long, so she flipped up the existing hem and rehemmed it, instead of unsewing the first hem and trimming, it gave us a hem that did not lay properly.  We have all done that, we've all tried to salvage handwork, but sometimes it's just the thing that ruins the other careful sewing we've done.  We need to just leave the project a bit and consider it practice, no matter how beautifully done it is, or how long it took us to do.

My prejudice said that it was the fabric and not mom's technique, but I would have been wrong.  For beginners this is one of those things, you don't understand why a hem isn't lying flat, or you just don't want to tackle yet another delicate trimming project on an already squirming fabric, or you don't have anyone to help you mark the hem.

Mom's hems were always perfect, as we can see here, she made invisible hems, when I was first starting out, they were legend.  A vintage technique, with hand overcasting, this garment was made with care and love.


And this is not an easy stitch to can see the invisible stitches from the backside.

 and totally invisible from the right side.

So now when they say silk gets marked when you press it, this is what they mean.

It might lighten the crease if I wet it and press it damp, but I need to rehem it because with that extra 1 1/2" it's too long for a slip, but it's looking pretty cute as a dress possibility now.  I'll try it on one more time to see how it looks, the snaps may have to go.



Ok, now we have a  nice slip length.  It wants to be a slip.


With a much simpler hem finish, sorry mom, it's not invisible.


Corinne said...

Wow, your Mom's hand technique is beautiful. I suspect the simple fact that you are working on re-use for this dress, with or without that couture hem would thrill her. The fabric is so pretty. You are a trooper to stick with it.

ELMO said...

She would very patiently sit and show me how she would pick up one thread on the fabric so that it would be invisible. It's taken me years to get there, and dabbling in needlework helped.

Nhi of Lolita Patterns said...

Nice save! I grew up hand sewing all my hems and button holes. Now I sew as much as I can on the machine.

ELMO said...

Thank you, and welcome when the machine makes a nice buttonhole it certainly is faster than handmade.