FRENCH SEAMS | Best Way How to Sew a French Seam
French seams are best for lightweight, sheer fabrics like silk and chiffon, as well as items that will be washed frequently, like pillowcases. Learn how to sew a French seam in this simple tutorial.
What are French SeamS?
French seams are a type of seam finishing used in sewing in which the raw edges on the inside are completely encased in an extra row of stitching, creating a seam that is far more durable than most other seam finishes and ensuring that an item or clothing piece looks as good on the inside as it does on the outside.
What are French Seams Used For?
Use a French seam for: Pillowcase seams and fine fabrics such as silk and chiffon. It is better suited to thin to medium weight fabrics, as heavy fabrics add too much bulk in the enclosed seam.
French Seams – How to Sew A French Seam Video
I know you’re busy, but don’t have time to watch all of my videos? Here’s a quick video showing you how to French seam. Subscribe to my YouTube channel for weekly sewing and craft videos.
French Seams – Photo Tutorial
Here are the steps for sewing a French seam, which is the process of sewing a seam from one side of the fabric to the other, so you don’t end up with an unsightly French seam in your quilt or fabric.
STEP 1 – Sew the Seam
If your pattern has small seam allowances less than u00bd inch (12mm), it may be necessary to add a little extra. Pin the WRONG sides of your fabric together. Your seam allowance should be u00bcinch (6mm) less than the seam allowance specified in the pattern.
STEP 2 – Trim the French Seams
If you’re sewing a French seam, be sure to trim the raw edges carefully in the next couple of steps. Trim the seam allowance to u215b inch (3mm). Use sharp scissors to get a nice clean edge and avoid overhandling any raw edges.
STEP 3 – Press Seam Open
Use an up and down pressing motion rather than pulling the iron along the seam to press open the seam with the seam allowance on one side. Further reading: Pressing for sewing – how to best press a fabric for sewing.
STEP 4 – Press Right Sides Together
How do you press the fabric in half with RIGHT sides together and the seam on the edge? For the best results, make sure the seam is on the very edge and not to the side, and be careful not to damage the fabric.
STEP 5 – Stitch French Seams
Sew the seam allowance between the folded seam edge and the fold of the fabric, then sew the seam again u00bc inch (6mm) from the folded end to ensure your width is correct.
STEP 6 – Final Press
You can now get a professional French seams finish on your next project – perfect back and front – by pressing the seam open again with the seam allowance on one side, flipping your piece over and giving the inside of the seam a final press so it is nice and flat.
French Seams for Curves
If you’re sewing sharp curves, overlocking or bias bound seams are the way to go; pay special attention to step 2, where you’ll need to trim as close to the seam as possible.
French Seams Pillowcase Patterns
Add some lace or trim to the edge to make it interesting and unique. Both of these pillowcase patterns come with cutting instructions so you can make them in a variety of sizes.
Pillowcase Patterns on my Blog
The Taylor Skirt has French seams on the side seams, and it’s a free tutu skirt sewing pattern!
How do you do a French seam step by step?
- Press the Seam. Press the seam as it was sewn.
- Enclose the Seam and Press Again. Pin the wrong sides of the fabric together where you want your seam to be, so the seam allowance will be on the right side of the fabric.
How do I sew a French seam on curtains?
First, sew the first seam.
- Sew the entire seam at the 1/4u2032u2032 seam allowance.
- Trim the seam allowance down to 1/8u2032u2032 if desired.
- Open the seam with the right side of the fabric facing up.
- Press the seam allowance to one side, on the right side of the fabric.
Why is it called a French seam?
A French seam is a seam that encloses the seam allowance on the inside of a sewn item so that no raw edge is visible and eliminates the need for another type of seam finish. It’s also known as an “invisible seam” because you can’t see where the stitches are made.
Are French seams strong?
A french seam is strong, but it can be stiff and bulky, and because it is trimmed so short, the first sewn edge can sometimes unravel. French seams are easiest to do on straight seams.
How do you sew a 5’8 French seam?
Using a 5/8″ Seam Allowance to Sew French Seams
- Bring the WRONG sides of your fabric together.
- Stitch the 1/4″ line (note: use matching thread. )
- Open the fabric and press the seam towards the back of your project.
How do you sew a corner hem?
To do this, press 14u201du201312u201d of fabric to the wrong side, then press the same amount of fabric to the wrong side again, enclosing the raw edge of the fabric into the fold. When you get to a corner where the hems will overlap, simply unfold the hem on one side while pressing the hem on the other.
What garments are French seams used for?
Because a French seam uses a lot of material and can get bulky with heavier fabrics, it should only be used on delicate, lightweight fabrics like chiffon or organza.
How do you finish silk seams?
Fold your silk fabric right sides together and press the sewn edges together; wrap the edges by sewing them in for the perfect finish; press the seam allowance and ensure it is flat; finish your French seam by pressing on the right side to flatten the seams and complete your French seam.