Are you looking for our Just For You Sewlebrity Sewalong? Well, you're in the right place! Since we have 5 Wednesdays this month, it gives us one extra blog post for our sewalong and I thought I'd use it to share my secrets for sewing the hem on the Faux-Wrap Pencil Skirt.
And it also fits the requirements of my Sewing 201 posts... these are posts where I share a technique to take your sewing to the next level. So I'm going to call it that too. :)
Plus I'm going to giveaway a skirt! I made a LOT of these skirts when we were writing Just For You, and this is a new one, never worn, and ready to be loved. It is a size women's small, but if you normally wear a size medium you could still wear it. The knit fabric I used to sew it is medium weight cotton/lycra blend from The Fabric Fairy. It has plenty of stretch and recovery and is not so thin as to show too much, if you know what I mean. :) Scroll to the end of this post to enter.
FYI: The instructions for the easy Faux-Wrap Pencil Skirt is in our book Just For You, and next week Stephanie Kendron (who hosts the Modern Sewciety podcast) is going to share skirt she made! Join our facebook group to learn about our year-long selfish sewing sewalong. Come back every Wednesday to see more!
How to sew a Professional Double-Needle Hem
A double needle hem is a super finish for knit fabric garments. Use it for a skirt, top, sleeve, or pant leg hem. The double-needle stitch is much more flexible than a regular straight stitch so that means no popped threads when you accidentally stretch the hem too much, and if your sewing machine is capable of zig-zaging, then it can do this too.
Serging the edge first will make your finished hem look very similar to a coverstitched hem (that's the fancy machine that is used on most store-bought garments). But serging is not really necessary since knit fabrics don't fray.
Step 1: Prep your edge. Serge the bottom, if desired. Then press the hem the desired amount.
Step 2: Prep your sewing machine. You will need two spools of thread (fill an extra bobbin for one if you need to) and two spool holders. If your sewing machine doesn't have two spool holders, I've seen where people tape a pencil or straw vertically next to the first spool holders to make a temporary one. You could also use a free-standing thread holder.
Install a double needle on your sewing machine. Thread the machine as usual with the first spool of thread and insert it in the needle of the right.
Thread the second spool (or bobbin) of thread second, in just the same way. It will seem strange to thread two threads in the same spot, but it will turn out fine. The second thread should go into the needle on the left.
Step 3: Test on a scrap of fabric. Use a straight stitch. I usually lengthen my stitch to 3 or 3.5 for knit fabrics. Backstitching is fine with a double needle. You don't need to stretch the fabric as you go.
Step 4: Sew the hem. As you can see from the picture above, I strategically pressed the hem on this skirt along the bottom stripe so that my row of black stitches would follow the next black stripe up. It won't be visible for most of the hem.
Here are examples of what the wrong side of the hem would look like with and without the serged edge. Like I said, the serged edge is not necessary. But it will fake your friends out so they think you bought the skirt at the store.
Win the skirt!
So who wants to win this size small Faux-Wrap Pencil skirt??? Leave a comment below to tell me if you have ever used a double needle stitch before. If the answer is 'no,' promise me that you will try it! Make sure you enter your email address so I can email you if you win. I'll let random.org pick the winner on Tuesday night, April 14th 2015.
*** Update: this giveaway has ended and comments on this blog post are now closed. Thanks so much to everyone who entered and congrats to Annie, the skirt winner!***