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A foray into French seams

A short and easy French seams tutorial

French seams are so enviably neat and stylish, I just had to try them for myself. And seriously, it sounds way fancier than it is. It takes just 3 steps to do, and a little bit of practice to master.

  1. Put your pieces of fabric together wrong sides together. Yes, nice sides facing out. What you're about to do will feel like sacrilege and make your skin crawl. Sew your edges together.
  2. Trim the edges close to the stitches.
  3. Now fold your fabric so that the right sides face inwards as usual and sew down the side. There you have it! Raw edges hidden away in a neat fabric casing.

Seriously, that's it. The French just make everything classier, non?

I will admit that my desire to give it a go was more to avoid getting out the overlocker than anything else, but for once a bit of laziness paid off. And for those of us without overlockers, this is definitely a technique worth becoming accomplished at.

Here's a picture of the garment that I made using French seams. It's a little bolero for a flowergirl at a colleague's wedding. I used lycra rib and I must say it's on the upper end of the spectrum of fabrics I would recommend for French seams. It resulted in rather bulky seams, so I would stick to finer, less heavy fabrics.

And in the quest for more professional looking garments, I'll definitely be looking into double stitching the hems and edges!