Monday, June 6, 2011

Extreme Curves

Finished circle insertion
I'm preparing to be teacher-of-the-moment for my ASG neighborhood group this week. My chosen topic is "curved seams." I posted about an interesting detail in TSW Verona coat back in January and I've been watching and trying to learn more about curved seams since then. Curved seams are everywhere! Of course, when you go looking for something, you find it.

For example, my occasional sewing student recently brought in an Anna Sui dress she wants to make. At first I thought that it was just too difficult for a beginner. Maybe it is, but over the course of that afternoon, she inserted the godets into the front and back skirts without a hitch. Now these are straight seams but it is still a similar insertion. I have noticed that many patterns instruct you to sew the seam BEFORE clipping. I find that this does not work well for me. You do have to staystitch, but clipping before stitching is essential to a smooth insertion, I think.

After sewing the seam in one pass!

Sewing the seam
Black staystitching, yellow seam

So today I decided to make an "extreme" sample for my upcoming class. How about a complete circle inserted into a piece of fabric, by machine? This is really a form of machine appliqué, but more refined for clothing. There is no stitching on the exterior.

I started by tracing a circle from a dinner plate onto freezer paper. Then I added a 1/2" seam allowance to each side of the line. I cut out the circle and used it as a template for cutting out both pieces here. I used the outer edge for the cream fabric and the inner edge for the striped fabric. So the cut circle is 1" larger than the hole in the fabric to allow for 1/2" seam allowancs.

I will post my lesson soon. I'm very pleased with this sample. It sort of looks like a pizza in these pictures. But I am pleased.

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