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March 24, 2014

Flatlining Tutorial: Finish underlining and seams in one (a.k.a. “flatlining”)

I discovered a great technique for finishing seams and underlining in one – it ends up looking like a cross between a French Seam and a Hong Kong finish.  It’s a perfect solution for silk or other fabrics prone to fraying, like my recent silk faille Simplicity 2343. I’m not sure from where it originated, but there’s a text tutorial on Pattern Review and a few bloggers have written about it before. However, I struggled to understand the instructions without some photos, so I thought I would put together this little tutorial for you! Hope you find it useful. The instructions below assume that your patterns has a 5/8 inch seam allowance.
How to do flatlining by Cashmerette

1. Cut your underlining 1/2 inch wider than the fashion fabric on each vertical seam (i.e. the whole piece will be 1 inch wider).

 

2. Sew the vertical edges, right sides together, using a 1/4 inch seam. Because the underlining is bigger, it won’t sit flush to the fashion fabric.

 

3. Cut the seams allowances down to 1/8 inch. I highly recommend the tip Amy learned at a sewing expo recently – use your serger without needles in to quickly and cleanly trim the seams.
4. Turn inside out (i.e. wrong sides together). Press the underlining away from the fashion fabric, and then fold the underlining around the edge of the fashion fabric to the back side. Note that the fashion fabric *doesn’t* fold, but rather, the underlining wraps around it. You can stitch in the ditch along the fashion/underlining seam – I didn’t do this for my silk skirt and I haven’t had any problems, but depending on the type of fabric you’re using you may want to do it.

 

5. Now treat the fashion fabric and underlining as one piece! When you sew it together, you’ll have lovely 1/8 inch wrapped edges. Remember that you trimmed 1/8 inch off the fashion fabric, so sew up the vertical seams with a 1/2 inch seam allowance.

 

 

Et voila! Give it a try and let me know if it works for you.
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Also, the giveaway has closed! ChriChri congrats, you won the Liberty buttons and bias tape! Please contact me so I can send it to you.

 


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