Oliver + S

Linen- finishing seams

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    Profile photo of cybele727cybele727 @cybele727

    Hi everyone. I took the plunge, bought a pattern for myself and am starting to think about and sew for ME! I bought this lovely soft blackberry linen with a natural pinstripe. Conservative, yet casual, and perfect for work. Linen however frays easily.

    So, seam finishing. I don’t have a serger.

    For anyone who has made it what seam finishes would you recommend for linen?

    French?

    Binding?

    Triple stitch zig-zag?

    Let me know your suggestions.

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    Profile photo of RobinRobin @Robin

    Jenny, have you tried the triple stitch zig-zag? Can you trim your seams a little so they are neat and then zig-zag?

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    Profile photo of mkhsmkhs @mkhs

    Any of those would be fine. Fake French seams work well, too, if the linen is on the lighter side. Flat-felled seams are great for linen and super durable.

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    Profile photo of cybele727cybele727 @cybele727

    I lurvuh the triple zig zag. So sturdy and keeps seams flat. I use it as my general finishing, but didn’t know if it had enough “security” for fraying linen. I will have the full seam allowance, so I can definitely trim.

    I considered and discarded flat fell- that has a slightly too casual look for work.

    What is a fake french??

    Jenny

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    Profile photo of Liesl GibsonLiesl Gibson
    Keymaster
    @liesl

    Linen has a tendency for a bit of “seam slippage” in stress spots. For example, if you’re making linen trousers, the weave of the linen can open up a bit around the seam at the rise, just due to stress on the seam when you sit down. If you’re concerned about this happening, you might want to consider flat felled seams in those spots. A bit of interfacing can help, too. But other than that, any seam finishing will work!

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    Profile photo of cybele727cybele727 @cybele727

    Since it is your skirt, I think that I should be ok. There is lots of ease through the rear, thus little stress on the seams when sitting. But maybe I should do flat fell on the side seams …

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    Profile photo of melelizameleliza @meleliza

    In addition to slippery, I find most linen also frays pretty badly, so I like French seams or a combination of French and flat felled for pants. And don’t trim too much or it will wear through as well.

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    Profile photo of Liesl GibsonLiesl Gibson
    Keymaster
    @liesl

    Oh yes, for the skirt it should be fine. And you could press all the side seams toward the back (I think I remember that’s what we have you do?) and finish them together. Actually flat-felled seams WOULD look really nice there… French seams might be too bulky with the pocket. But a bound seam with a very fine fabric could be nice, too.

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    Profile photo of NicoleNicole @motherof5

    I second the using of a thin strip of interfacing on high pressure seams.

    I was constantly pulling open the back seam of my Portfolio dresses as I pulled them up to feed. By adding a thin off cut of interfacing to both sides before sewing it stopped the problem.

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    Profile photo of Lightning McStitchLightning McStitch @LightningMcStitch

    You shouldn’t get any seam straining on this pattern! There is no centre back seam, which would be the most likely spot to take strain when you sit down.

    Because you can finish the seams together a triple zig zag should work perfectly.

    I overlocked the seams on my linen one, but only cause I could. The only change I made was to double interface the front waistband as there’s nothing I hate more than a flat waistband that folds over and scrunches!

    Don’t forget to err on the small side as a few of us have sewn ones that were a bit too big, had to be gathered lots and looked a bit bustle-ish from behind!

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    Profile photo of cybele727cybele727 @cybele727

    Well, this is wonderful. Robin already told me to cut a smaller size for the purposes of the ease in the back. I have a natural bustle, so to speak, so sometimes I like to think that I can blame the gathers for the look, rather than nature! šŸ˜‰

    But I do like the idea of interfacing the seams a touch. I remember when I was pinning thinking, wow this is slippery and shifty, cut carefully.

    The flat fell would look nice, but I wonder about it being too casual a look for my goal, which is a skirt for work. Family Court (gathered to a-line skirt/pant, dressy t, cardigan- snappy casual) is more informal than Surrogate’s Court (dress pants/gathered to a line to pencil skirt/suit skirt, blouse, cardigan/blaser– accessories to dress up) and Supreme Court and Appellate Division (suit only). I mostly practice in Family Court and Surrogate’s Court. So if I aim casual for Surrogate’s court, it covers “dressy” for Family Court.

    Family Court looks like People of Walmart meets Jerry Springer live. Clients don’t trust their attorneys who are more formally dressed.

    Thus the Everyday skirt project. Once I get it down, I am making like 5 in various weights to create an easy “uniform” for work. I am clearly too lazy to actually think about what I wear. šŸ™‚

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    Profile photo of Liesl GibsonLiesl Gibson
    Keymaster
    @liesl

    Well if you make five skirts the pattern will certainly be aptly named! One for each day of the week!

    Hope you’re having a great summer, Jenny. xo

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    Profile photo of InderInder @Inder

    I agree that flat-felled seams work great for linen, are very sturdy, and press nicely. In coordinating (rather than contrast) thread, I don’t think they read too “casual.” In fact, I doubt they’d be very noticeable at all.

    Loved your descriptions of the different courts. I’m a lawyer, and wear my Everday Skirt on business casual days. I always wear a suit to court, so not usually there.

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    Profile photo of needlewomanneedlewoman @needlewoman

    How did your Everyday skirt go, Jenny? Were you pleased with the result? I’m interested because I’m thinking of buying the pattern to make some summer skirts. Although about a size 10-12, I look dreadful with belts, or with tops tucked in. I don’t have a waist as such, and tend to look like a potato sack tied in the middle. I liked the look of the skirt because of the elasticised back to help with fitting, and the slight gathering. I like the idea of linen for it too. Good luck with your youngest’s first days at pre school.

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    Profile photo of RobinRobin @Robin

    Buy it! There is something magical about the waistband of this skirt. The elastic helps with fitting and the front band is wide enough to hold things in place. The skirt is not overly flared and seems to work in all kinds of fabric. And it has fantastic pockets that you can actually put things in.

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