How to Sew a French Seam

When sewing all types of different cloths, it generally doesn’t matter if you have a raw edge at the seam because most seams are on the inside of the garment and can’t be seen. Sometimes it does matter, though. You may use dark fabric to make curtains, and while looking at them you can’t see the seam, but upon looking through the glass from outside the house, you’ll notice the raw edge easily.

Another example is a silk blouse. Some fabric are very wispy and seams can easily be seen while the garment is worn. For this reason, it’s important to learn a seam that will hide the raw edges and give a more professional look to the finished project.

Some people use the french seam on just about everything they sew, simply because it makes them feel better about their finished project. Even if no one will see the seam, the french seam can also keep fabrics from unraveling on the inside. When seams unravel it’s then necessary to trim long, tangled threads from inside the garment, each and every time you wear it.

The french seam is very easy to accomplish. Whether you’re making curtains or a dress, the technique is the same. Place the two pieces that will be seamed, wrong sides together, and pin. Sew the seam, with a 3/8ths inch allowance. Unpin and open the seam. Press with a warm iron. If the fabric is delicate, use a hand towel or another piece of cloth to lay over the seam before ironing.

After pressing well, fold the fabric with right sides together, placing the seam at the edge. Now stitch once again, making sure to stay a fraction of an inch away from the edges of the original seam. When you’ve finished the seam, and you open the cloth, you should see absolutely none of the original seam, on the right side of the garment piece. If you do, you need to take a deeper seam.

After you’ve finished the second seam, turn the garment pieces to the wrong side. You’ll see the seam, but no raw edges. Press the seam flat, to one side. The seam is now finished and no raw edges can be seen.

Try this technique on blouses, skirts, dresses, curtains and other projects that will have a seam that could be seen. It’s easy and will make every project look very professional.

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