Sunday, February 17, 2013

McCall's 6518 muslin: rolled hem extravaganza

McCalls 6518 in progress
McCalls 6518 in progress, size 12 above

I have a bit of sewing ADD right now.  I'm "working" on three projects at once, which is unusual for me.  Usually I work on one project at at time.:
  1. Sewaholic Thurlow trouser muslin (will soon start muslin #5.)
  2. Sewaholic Renfrew top (Started muslin #2, will soon start muslin #3.  Thanks for all your suggestions regarding armhole wrinkles, Jennifer Stern is helping me fit this via the PR class Fitting The Tee to a T, check out this photo to see part of the solution!)
  3. McCall's 6518 dress muslins #1 (size 12) and #2 (size 14)
I saw the McCall's dress last summer.  I needed to learn how to use the narrow (or rolled) hem foot on a curved edge to finish the ruffles.  I learned last summer how to use the narrow hem foot on a straight edge for this dress.

On Saturday I started with a free Craftsy class about sewing machine feet, but it only covered using the foot on a straight edge.  Then I found a great BrianSews video on using the narrow hem foot on a curved edge. Perfect!    I spent an hour playing around and "perfecting" the technique.

Here's what works for me:
  • short stitch length (1.5 on my old Baby Lock--my new machine doesn't have this foot)
  • stitch width of around 2
  • tension of 2
  • use the narrowest foot (the 1/8", not the larger one I have--going around a curve with that foot resulted in a mess)
  • go slow! it's not a race.
  • and follow Brian's directions.  Basically, your fabric entering the slot must not be wider or smaller than the slot, otherwise, trouble! 
So here's how the ruffle began:
McCalls 6518 in progress
And here's how it looked as I was sewing it with the rolled hem foot.  You can see how the foot rolls the fabric under to be stitched down.  Sweet!
McCalls 6518 in progress
Cute, right?
McCalls 6518 in progress
The front side:
McCalls 6518 in progress
Here's what it looks like straight from the machine (and unironed):
McCalls 6518 in progress
Nice front:
McCalls 6518 in progress
Here's the underside:
McCalls 6518 in progress
Here's an underside where the fabric width exceeded the slot length. Those little bits can be cut off with double bent embroidery scissors.
McCalls 6518 in progress
SO, here's the three tiered ruffle before ironing:
McCalls 6518 in progress
and after ironing:
McCalls 6518 in progress
And then on the dress:
McCalls 6518 in progress
And close up:
McCalls 6518 in progress
As it turns out, I think the 12 is fine on top but too small on the bottom (I'm not showing you what the back of this dress looks like--it's very goofy--not enough ease for sure in the hip/derriere area). Since I already started the 14 bodice, I will put the 14 skirt on the 14 bodice and see if the back looks any better. If so, I will make a 12 grading to 14 in the hip in the real deal.

Anyway, the rolled hem (or narrow hem) foot is a pretty sweet foot.  

I had breakfast for dinner.  I even had orange juice--that's another unusual thing for me.  I made the lasagna again by the way last week--it is THAT good.
McCalls 6518 in progress
Be well! Good night!

11 comments:

  1. Oooo. The layers look wonderful and are really effective.

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  2. Wow.

    Nice playtime.
    I've done the rolled hem with my serger but not on a curve. I am impressed.

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  3. Lovely ruffles! Thanks for the rolled hem tips, I really struggle with those. Yours are beautiful.

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  4. Wow, that is a very pretty dress. I don't think I've ever seen that pattern before. What's your fashion fabric going to be?

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  5. Nice job with those ruffles! I have messed with my narrow hem presser foot but haven't really put in the time with it that you have. Might need to get on that again.

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  6. So impressed with your rolled hem on the curve. I can definitely do a straight rolled him ~ but not on a curve...I usually use my serger.

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  7. Wow, you've done a super job learning to use that rolled hem foot. It's not an easy attachment to conquer. I have trouble with it, for sure. Good job! Nice breakfast dinner!

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  8. Now I want a narrow hem foot! Good luck with all your projects, I am having some sewing ADD myself ; ) I LOVE the looks of your Mccall's dress so far--you always sew the cutest things!

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  9. I like the ruffles! and your rolled hems look perfect. And you simply cannot go wrong with breakfast for dinner. Best idea ever!

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  10. Pretty ruffles and thanks for sharing how you used it. I have a rolled hem foot, tried it and it was a hot mess. You made it look effortless... great job.

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  11. Beautiful ruffles. Thanks for sharing.

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