March 6, 2012

How to Sew a Curved Seam

Today's post is inspired, in part, by Anna Maria Horner. I've been designing an apron for a wedding shower. I usually back my aprons, so the finished product has two layers of quilter's cotton. This time, however, I was inspired by Horner's "Innocent Crush" home decor line, a heavier weight fabric, so no backing was necessary. 

 Because I am not sewing this apron inside out, I have to iron a seam along the outer edges. The dilemma? I have to iron a curved bottom seam, which is a bit challenging. The fabric usually bunches and tucks and it's nearly impossible to get a smooth edge with my sanity in tact.

Fortunately I own "Seams to Me" by Anna Maria Horner. In it she shares some handy dandy sewing wisdom for sewing such a round seam. I adapted it a bit because I wanted to have an edge where my seam was folded over twice toward the wrong side of the fabric before I sewed it. Are you with me? Here we go:

1.  Determine the shape of the piece needing a smooth fold. In this instance, I cut out my apron pattern as usual. 
2. Grab a piece of cardboard (I used an empty cereal box), and trace the rounded area onto it.

forgive my night photos

3. Cut the shape about 1/2 in. smaller than the line you traced, making sure the edges are smooth.
 4. Press the aluminum foil down around the shape, pressing it smooth with your fingers.

5.   Layer your pieces in the following order:  Your fabric right side down, then about 1/4 in. from the fabric edge place your cardboard covered in foil.
6. With your iron on medium-high, carefully fold the fabric over the foil and press, careful not to burn your fingers.

7. For a double folded seam, place the cardboard/foil shape behind the newly sewn seam, fold the fabric over the foil once more, and iron.
8. Remove the cardboard/foil shape and head to the sewing machine.


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