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Three ways to sew a hem facing // A Dove blouse tutorial

How to sew a curved hem facing // Megan Nielsen Design Diary // Dove blouse sewalong

I have so much love for special hems! I think hems often get overlooked when it comes to adding design features, but i think an interesting hem can take a blouse to the next level – especially if you’re the kind of girl who likes to wear your tops untucked.

Due to the extreme curve of the Dove blouse hemline i decided to make this a faced hem, with included hemline facing pieces, and i think it adds a lovely amount of weight and structure to the blouse. Today i’m going to show you how to sew a beautiful hem facing, and three different ways to finish the internal raw edges so that it’s beautiful on the inside an the outside!

Of course if you prefer you may sew a very narrow rolled hem instead, using this tutorial.

Ready to sew a gorgeous hem facing?

3 ways to sew a curved hem facing // Megan Nielsen Design Diary // Dove blouse sewalong

The first method i’ll be showing you is covered in the pattern instructions, it’s basic, it works well and is neat. I like this method for a more casual blouse, like the one above which is made from linen. The downside of this method is that the topstitching is visible from the outside of the garment, and though the raw edges are neatened, you can still see them on the inside, which i know will make some sewers heads explode.

curved-hem-facing-193 ways to sew a curved hem facing // Megan Nielsen Design Diary // Dove blouse sewalong

Place the Front Hem Facing and Back Hem Facing right sides together so that the side seams line up.

Sew 5/8” (1.5cm) from the raw edge along the side seams. Stop stitching ¼” (0.6cm) shy of the hemline.

curved-hem-facing-21 curved-hem-facing-22

Press the seams open. Finish the raw edges along the top of the facing by your preferred method, for example using an overlocker/serger, zig zag stitch on a regular machine or perhaps a binding.

3 ways to sew a curved hem facing // Megan Nielsen Design Diary // Dove blouse sewalong3 ways to sew a curved hem facing // Megan Nielsen Design Diary // Dove blouse sewalong

Turn the blouse the right way round, and place the hem facings over the hemline with right sides facing each other. Ensure that the notches line up and the side seams line up.

Sew ¼” (0.6cm) from the raw edge along the hemline.

3 ways to sew a curved hem facing // Megan Nielsen Design Diary // Dove blouse sewalong

Clip and notch along the curves of the seam allowance, being careful not to cut through the stitches. I like to use pinking sheers for this!

3 ways to sew a curved hem facing // Megan Nielsen Design Diary // Dove blouse sewalong

Press the facing and seams away from the blouse.

3 ways to sew a curved hem facing // Megan Nielsen Design Diary // Dove blouse sewalong

Understitch along the edge of the hemline facing to prevent the facing from rolling to the front of the garment during wear.

3 ways to sew a curved hem facing // Megan Nielsen Design Diary // Dove blouse sewalong

Turn the facing to the wrong side of the garment and press.

3 ways to sew a curved hem facing // Megan Nielsen Design Diary // Dove blouse sewalong

Attach the open edge of the facing to the blouse by topstitching.

Press the hemline well.

3 ways to sew a curved hem facing that are absolutely gorgeous! // Tutorial by Megan Nielsen Patterns shown on the Dove Blouse sewing pattern

The second method is really great for those of us who like to enclose as many raw edges as humanly possible. When it comes to hemlines i don’t really like to see overlock or zig zag stitches, i really like to have that all hidden, and since the facing of the Dove blouse can be visible from some angles, i think it’s nice to completely enclose it. It’s not hard to do, and i think the result is really lovely inside and out.

3 ways to sew a curved hem facing // Megan Nielsen Design Diary // Dove blouse sewalong

As before, place the front and back facing right sides together and sew 5/8” (1.5cm) from the raw edge along the side seams. Stop stitching ¼” (0.6cm) shy of the hemline.

Press the side seams open.

3 ways to sew a curved hem facing // Megan Nielsen Design Diary // Dove blouse sewalong

Sew 1/4″ along the top edge of the facing.

3 ways to sew a curved hem facing // Megan Nielsen Design Diary // Dove blouse sewalong3 ways to sew a curved hem facing // Megan Nielsen Design Diary // Dove blouse sewalong

Turn in the top of the facing along the line of basting and press well.

3 ways to sew a curved hem facing // Megan Nielsen Design Diary // Dove blouse sewalong

Turn the blouse the right way round, and place the hem facings over the hemline with right sides facing each other. Ensure that the notches line up and the side seams line up.

Sew ¼” (0.6cm) from the raw edge along the hemline. Clip and notch along the curves of the seam allowance, being careful not to cut through the stitches. I like to use pinking sheers for this!

3 ways to sew a curved hem facing // Megan Nielsen Design Diary // Dove blouse sewalong

Press the facing and seams away from the blouse. Understitch along the edge of the hemline facing to prevent the facing from rolling to the front of the garment during wear. Turn the facing to the wrong side of the garment and press.
3 ways to sew a curved hem facing // Megan Nielsen Design Diary // Dove blouse sewalong

Attach the open edge of the facing to the blouse by topstitching.

Press the hemline well.

3 ways to sew a curved hem facing // Megan Nielsen Design Diary // Dove blouse sewalong

This method is quite similar to method 2 and is my favourite as it results in a near invisible finish on the outside and inside and completely enclosed raw seams. It’s where sewing dreams come true my dears!

For this method as in method 2, you will need to sew 1/4″ from the raw edge along the top of the facing, then turn that inwards and press.

3 ways to sew a curved hem facing // Megan Nielsen Design Diary // Dove blouse sewalong

Once you have sewn the facing to the blouse, clipped and notched, understitched and turned towards the wrong side of the garment, then you will press the facing well and pin it carefully in place along the entire length of the hemline.

3 ways to sew a curved hem facing // Megan Nielsen Design Diary // Dove blouse sewalong3 ways to sew a curved hem facing // Megan Nielsen Design Diary // Dove blouse sewalong

At this point you will handsew the folded in edge to the blouse using a slip stitch. For more detailed instructions on sewing a slip stitch specifically, check out this tutorial.

3 ways to sew a curved hem facing that are absolutely gorgeous! // Tutorial by Megan Nielsen Patterns shown on the Dove Blouse sewing pattern

There you go my dears! 3 ways to sew seriously gorgeous hemline facings! I really hope you’ve enjoyed the Dove sewalong! Don’t forget to let me know in the comments if you have any questions.

Here’s the full list of Dove tutorials:

Don’t have the Dove sewing pattern yet? Get it in store here! We absolutely love seeing what you make, so don’t forget to tag your creations with #MNdove and @megannielsenpatterns if sharing on social media.

Happy sewing!

About Author

Meg is the Founder and Creative Director of Megan Nielsen Patterns, and is constantly dreaming up ideas for new sewing patterns and ways to make your sewing journey more enjoyable! She gets really excited about design details and is always trying to add way too many variations to our patterns.

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Debra QS
Debra QS
3 years ago

Very clear and concise instructions. Reminds me of how my mother taught me. However, I still hate hand stitching anything. Mom could do it in 5 seconds flat while hours later I would be only half finished. Ugh!