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sewing with silk charmeuse
how to manage long seams on evening wear
MirrorQueen
MirrorQueen
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Date: 7/27/13 8:01 AM

Hi there,

I have been helped by the review section on Vogue Pattern 2241. However, really scared about wrecking my dress. Debating what seam finish to use for the long seams on the skirt section of this dress.

Lots of books say french seams, but some poeple have said this may be problematic.

Would love advice as I dont want to end up with rippled wonky seaming on the skirt part of this evening dress.

Should I stretch the seams as I stitch, as some books say..................scared and dont want to ruin this project!!

Elona
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In reply to MirrorQueen <<
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Date: 7/27/13 2:51 PM

fxdoc made this dress and has photos of the finished garment plus notes on the construction here. It is 3/4 down the page in Reply #17 on: July 09, 2013, 03:01:47 PM .

beauturbo
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In reply to MirrorQueen <<


Date: 7/27/13 2:59 PM

I have not sewed that, but if I was, with that fabric, and the way the skirt is and all those inset points and I know this sounds strange, but I would want the least amount of stitches in it, total at all, and the very least amount of any "seam finishing" going on, so to me it would be zero seam finishing actually. But that is just me.

It's kind of hard to see what is going on with the skirt, without seeing a pattern layout, and what part is straight and what on the bias, but some of those may be on the bias, so they are not going to fray much anyways and it's not the kind of dress you are going to toss in the washer and dryer either, and if washed, probably only gently in the sink. So I actually would only straight stitch it, and have no seam finishing at all, at least in most of it. some on bias seams I might press open, or some other places if not bias, maybe use some pinking shears, and just even press to the side. And I would stitch kind of loosely and let things hang and stretch out for a while on that skirt too, before hemming, as I think after those seams sewn up, things might move around a bit.

If I could not get a nice ripple free straight stitch on the skirt lengths sewing machine wise, then I might even use the chain stitch on a overlocker for just that instead. Just since when the overlocker chain stitch does that, you got no lock stitch even meeting in the middle of the fabric at all, it's just all interlocking on one side of it instead, and actually not even displacing and of the fibers the same way, plus it might stretch a bit better on some of those long seams even.

None of this is in particular how you should do it at all, more just how I think I would instead though.

MirrorQueen
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In reply to Elona <<


Date: 7/27/13 3:13 PM

Hi Elona,

Thanks for this.........I have read up so much that I am getting flustered and confused.

fxdoc, aka Kathryn has made such a beautiful job of her dress, but I am worried, as I dont have enough silk charmeuse to line my dress.......that is why I am getting so manic about the look of the seams.

I will just have to bite the bullet soon and go for it!

Lots of people have said french seams and lots have said no way.....baffled and hesitant now. Cannot stay on the fench for too much longer. LOL.

AnneM
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Date: 7/27/13 7:33 PM

My suggestion: Take some scraps left over from cutting out the dress, and sew a few seams.

It has been a long time since I did a long charmeuse bias, although I am actually just about to do so again. If I remember correctly, I just used a straight stitch. I did keep the material taut, but not stretched per se. (This was 10 years ago, so I'm partially guessing here. And I can't check the dress because it is boxed up in the attic - it was my wedding dress.) I used a microtech needle, and silk thread. I might be using a fine poly thread this time, depending on my silk thread supply.

You shouldn't have to do much with the S.A. that are on the bias, even if you do regular seams. You could use something like "seams great" on any non-bias edges.

French seams are lovely. I understand the hesitation, though. Silk will sometimes tear at the seams, and French seams have more holes to tear at. I don't have an opinion on if it is a good idea or not. Perhaps I will try it with my dress (which is also unlined).

------
With a great wardrobe that's still in the flat-fabric stage.

Elona
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In reply to MirrorQueen <<


Date: 7/27/13 7:52 PM

Kathryn did not line her dress, and the pattern does not call for lining.

As to seam finishes, in her post, she says she tried various approaches and wound up being most pleased with simple pinking shears and catch stitch in places.

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