Monday, July 04, 2016

Tutorial: Insertion lace along the hem band

Okay, now for how I sewed insertion lace around the bottom (check out my previous Tutorial, for how to sew lace on a curved seam, such as those princess seams above).  The hem band of the Hayden top is a folded, bias cut piece.  To insert the lace within that seam, I first sewed the lace directly onto the bottom of the blouse, using the edge of the blouse as a guideline.  In the image below, I sewed the top edge of the lace, farthest from the raw edge of the bodice fabric, sewing right over the lace that was already inserted.
The fabric was pressed open, zig-zag stitched and pressed close to the seam.  (Sorry, no photos!)  To attach the bias band, I positioned the fabric right side up, underneath the lace, attempting to have an equal seam allowance all around.  Below is what it looks like from the right side, and then what it looks like from the wrong side.  Back on the right side, I used a straight stitch to attach the lace to the band.

I pressed the fabric open, but did not zig-zag the seam before trimming the seam allowance to 1/4", see below. (The zig-zag stitch will happen later.)
To avoid additional stretch, especially while pressing the seam allowance, I sewed a basting stitch along the unsewn side of the bias hem band.  Then, I used that line to guide pressing of the seam allowance.  
Finally, I folded the hem band in half lengthwise, carefully lining up the edge of the hem band with the edge of the lace, pinning all the way.  

Finally, on the right side, I zig-zagged through all the layers.

Unfortunately, this method had some problems.  First off, I couldn't sew everything with a perfectly even seam allowance .  This isn't a huge deal, but it made me feel uneasy (and a bit grumpy).  Second, the bias stretched a bit with all the handling.  Perhaps this could have been solved by more basting stitches?   
Perhaps the best way to do it would have been to mimic what I did with the curved seams; sew the first seam as instructed with basting stitches, apply the lace, remove the basting stitches, and then fold up the hem band to attach to the lace edge.  
At the end of the day, I still adore the look of the insertion lace in this top.  The edges are frayed a bit on the inside, but hey, there are worse things!  


  1. Super cute! I think you handled the lace well!!

  2. Those right angles of lace meeting lace and no visible main fabric seam allowances would have blown my little mind. Congratulations, it's a super cute top.