Monday, July 23, 2012

Rolled Hem on my Serger

Over the last week I finished enough of the muslin for J's dress that I gave it to her to try it on at home.  She was in a tizzy because her sonogram this afternoon was to reveal whether her baby is a boy or a girl.  Tomorrow I'll have the answer for you on both the sex of the baby and the fit of the dress.

This evening I used my 'downtime' to learn how to make a rolled hem on my serger.  When I first saw a rolled hem on a sheer fabric blouse, I knew I had to buy a serger.

I watched the ELNA video, read the manual many times, and many little scraps of cloth sacrificed their lives until I mastered making the rolled hem.  OK.. so what and who cares?

For me, it means I won't have to sew my rolled hem on my shirt tails.  I'll be able to make my own handkerchiefs in whatever fabric I have a mind to use and save myself the $1-2 they usually cost.  I wonder if I make 150 custom handkerchiefs, have I paid for the serger?

I read an article in Threads about sewing sheer blouses with a serger.  A critical element was the narrow rolled hem.  Another article discussed hemming a skirt by serging a rolled hem, folding it over, and then sewing through to finish the skirt hem. 

As you can see, we live exciting lives in Hackettstown, NJ.  Good night!


  1. Well done ... It looks really good... Every bit of practice helps cheers Mike

  2. Thanks! I already have a request to hem a dress for a lady I work with. She paid in advance with a quart of homemade clam chowder.

  3. Everything takes practice to do well, don't stress! I love my serger and use it a lot, even so, when making my posh dress last week, I went through about a yard of test rolled hem on my two fabrics before I got it perfect. Posh dress has two layers - lining fabric and chiffon, so two different sets of tensions required.

    1. The serger saved me today. The weave on the ladies dress was extremely loose. It seemed to explode, unraveling as soon as I cut it with the rotary cutter. Using a 3-stitch overlock with a safety stitch, the fabric immediately settled down. I tried stitching it down, but what a mistake that was. The stitches seemed to gather the fabric. I stopped quickly to research another approach. I found an article on steam-a-seam. Tried that, but the glue wouldn't adhere to the fibers, so I made the stitch length longer and kept tension on the fabric as I stitched. A zig-zag stitch would have worked better, but then for a hem? I don't think so. Sewing through the overlock stitches gave me just enough body to hold the hem. This was a most wicked evil cheap unnatural fabric. I should give back the clam chowder.

  4. It gathered as you machine stitched the hem to the dress? If that's the case, you need to try one or two things.

    1) fiddle round with the tension of your stitch.

    2) hold both layers of fabric taut as they go under the foot. This is easier than it sounds, as you musn't pull the fabric through - let the feed dogs do that - but just hold it taut, front and back, stitch a few inches, move your hands and start again