Saturday, February 24, 2018
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Bias Dress Sewing Tips

Vogue 9168




For this lightweight fabric a narrow hem is best. First, run a line of stitching along hem at 1/2” from raw edge and press up hem just beyond stitching.



Next, stitch along folded hem, right beside first row of stitching. Using appliqué scissors, trim close to second row of stitching.



 The final step is to roll up the hem one more time along trimmed edge, and stitch. This edge can be flipped up as you're sewing along on the machine. An edge stitching foot helps with this type of hem. This hem is used on the inside edge of the front neck facing, skirt hem and sleeve hem.




Bias Skirt Side Seams

Thread trace side seam allowances at 1”. Do this after cutting out pattern pieces while they are still lying on the table. Baste 1” seam allowances to test fit.


To sew French seams, first pin side seams wrong sides together, matching thread tracing. We have used 1" seam allowances on the side seams, making the bias easier to handle. Using a different colour of basting thread, baste along thread tracing, basting in 7” to 8” sections at a time leaving long thread tails. This allows the seam to stretch. Stitch at 5/8” from raw edge, stretching seam from in front and behind while machine sewing. This will build stretch into the




 Remove basting that is holding the two layers together, but making sure to leave thread tracing intact. Trim raw edge to 1/4” from stitching. Press seam open over seam roll. Now fold seam back on itself, so the skirts are right sides together and press along seam. Once again, match thread tracing and baste, basting 7” to 8” sections at a time. Remove thread tracing, but keep basting in. Stitch along this basting line, stretching seam again. Remove basting and press flat. Press seam toward back.



A stiff non-fusible interfacing works best for this belt. Use spray glue (505), to hold interfacing to wrong side of one belt piece. Pin both sides of belt together, right sides together. Stitch leaving a 2” opening, trim to 1/8” away from stitching. Clip corners on an angle. Press seams open. Turn to right side and press. Edge stitch around belt.



 Make belt carrier and pin in place, leaving some room so belt can fit through carrier. Hand stitch belt carrier ends together. Tack carrier to belt just in from the edges to hold it in place.



 Make eyelets in belt. To make these eyelets, the Bernina eyelet attachment was used. Alternatively, metal eyelets can be used. Wrap belt around belt buckle.



 Hand stitch layers together close to belt buckle. This step can be tricky, just try to get in as close as possible and keep the stitches neat. Slipstitch both layers of belt together along edges where the belt was flipped back around belt buckle.




Slip Side Seams

Thread trace seam allowances on slip front and back, 1” on side seams. Baste side seams, right sides together, matching thread basting. Baste in 7” to 8” sections at a time, leaving long thread tails. Remove thread tracing, keeping basting in. Stitch along basting, stretching from in front and behind while stitching on sewing machine. Pink raw edges. Press seam open.




General Sewing Tips

When in doubt, baste it. We go through an amazing amount of cotton basting thread at the studio. Basting a seam, a pleat, or a hem before sewing it on a machine makes it much easier to control. When sewing along basting, sew a hair to the inside of basting to avoid stitching over basting thread, it will then be easy to remove afterwards. When basting bias seams, baste in 7” to 8” sections, leaving long thread tails (see technique in photo of slip above). This allows the seam to stretch while being sewn. Stretching the seam builds stretch into the stitches, that way the seams will hang smoothly when worn.

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