Tuesday 14 July 2015

How I made a very simple but delicate chiffon scarf

     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.
Full length
     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.
Finished scarf

Detail of hem

The delicate nature of the fabric is clear here

All blog content and photos are Copyright of Charisse Sayers Proofreader & Copywriter www.charisse-sayers.com I welcome all feedback and would love to know your thoughts so please get in touch, comment, share, like and generally get involved – you can also find me on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram!

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