Often I see a fabric and I want it immediately, without any idea of what to make, which is precisely what happened with this gorgeous hummingbird print chiffon. I couldn’t think what on earth I could make with it (chiffon being notoriously difficult to work with) and it was only after much thought that I realised the simplest answer would be the best – just make a plain chiffon scarf.
|I love this print|
I’d not worked with chiffon before so I was a little apprehensive. As well as the fabric itself I ordered a specialist roll hem foot for my sewing machine to see if it might make the job of hemming the edge a little easier. I decided to order a two metre length of chiffon, and found when it arrived that it was wide enough to make two scarves, which was a nice surprise. However, I wasn’t at first sure how to cut the fabric in half – keeping a straight cut for two metres is difficult – so I did the old fashioned trick of cutting a small way in and then tearing the fabric in half.
Although this gave a very even separation of the two halves it did leave frayed edges so I had to go round both pieces of fabric and trim all the frayed edges off with scissors to ensure a finished neat hemmed edge; loose threads can also clog up a bobbin so it’s important to keep fabric well-trimmed. Once the edges were all neatened I cut a small strip from the end of one of the scarves and experimented with the roll hem foot.
|Keep your bobbin case/shuttle clean and oiled!|
It took a lot of practise but eventually I got the hang of it, however, I didn’t trust myself to do a neat enough job with the special foot and instead reverted to my normal machine foot and decided to roll the hem by hand, which might give a larger hem but would be easier to work with and probably give a neater continuous result.
|I gave up on using this roll hem foot|
Slowly working the fabric round the machine I was careful to fold the raw edge under itself to create a neat edge that wouldn’t fray. I found it easier to keep a slow and steady pace as chiffon is so delicate any mistakes could damage the integrity of the fabric and leave visible marks.
|Me rolling the hem by hand and feeding it in|
The finished result was great and I gifted one of the scarves to a friend who said she loved it. It definitely made me feel more confident about working with delicate fabrics and is a quick and easy way to make unique Christmas and birthday presents. Although I gave up on the roll hem foot for this project I will try it again in the future, maybe on slightly heavier fabrics.
|Detail of hem|
|The delicate nature of the fabric is clear here|
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