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Friday, May 27, 2011

Make A Tiny 1/8 inch Couture Hem for Sheer Fabrics

When I was making a bridal gown I took a class from master couture sewing expert Susan Khalje. I learned a technique from her which I will share with you. Have you ever had  problems hemming sheer fabrics like organza, chiffon, or cotton batiste? You can't sew a normal hem because it will show through and look bad and a serger hem looks mass produced. Mrs. Khalje doesn't think very highly of sergers, I might add. I for one have a rather unfriendly relationship with mine! One method of hemming sheer fabrics is a rolled hem which is done by hand but this tiny machine hem method is a faster and easier method. For some reason I have never read about this method in any of my sewing books. I believe it is a couture secret. I hope she doesn't mind my giving it away!

1. Start with a 5/8 inch seam allowance. Fold over the hem 3/8 of an inch and iron to the wrong side.

2. Now stitch with about a 2mm length stitch with a very thin machine needle as close as you can to the fold. About 1/8 of an inch from the fold.

3. Take some small scissors and trim as close as you can to the stitch line you just made.

4. Finger fold the hem over one more time as small as you can, between about 1/8 and 1/4 of an inch to cover the raw edge and stitch again. The stitch line will almost be at the hem fold and will barely be noticeable.

5. This is how it will look from the right side. As you can see from the tape measure it's about 1/8 of an inch.



  1. I wish that I had come across this before I had finished a bridesmaid dress with a regular hem. I did not know that I could have used this. Next time though I will because of this post.

    Thank you!

  2. Thank you! I had to put a tiny hem in a bridesmaid dress and had no luck with my rolled hem foot on this slippery fabric. Your trick works like a charm, I was finished in no time.

  3. Thanks so much. I was not happy with anything I tried on a sample of the material, so wen't looking on the internet, and there you were. You saved the day. I have been sewing for many years and have never run across this.

  4. I think you may have just saved me. My daughter's wedding dress has two layers of organza and I need to bring the hem up a bit for her. Our seamstress backed out at the last minute and budget is at its limit, so it's up to me to do this!! Thank you so much for this brilliant explanation!

  5. Pinning for future reference, thank you!


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