Introduction: Hemming a Chiffon, Satin, Cotton or Silk Square Scarf
This hem is fairly easy to do with a little practice. It is workable method to achieve a rolled hem on a chiffon, satin, cotton or silk square or other light to medium weight fabric. It uses the same method as I show in the video Hemming Chiffon On A Wedding Dress, but with special attention as to how to manage the corners.
Step 1: Cut the Fabric
Cut fabric to the desired size PLUS 2 inches extra, both lengthwise and widthwise.
In this case I am planning the square to measure 22 inches; so I have cut the square to be 24 inches.
Step 2: Press Over the Hem Allowance
Press over the hem allowance of 1 inch.
Do this on all four sides. In this case, the finished size is now 22 inches.
Step 3: Get Ready to Sew - Turn Under the Hem Allowance
The corners of the square look like the first image. This is the good side.
Turn under the hem allowance, making a second fold to the right of the first fold.
The width between the two folds should be 1/8 to 1/4 inch.
To demonstrate, the first pressed fold is marked with the yellow pin,
and the second fold is marked with the green pin.
NOTE: You will not need to pin the fold - just turn it under and take it to the sewing machine.
Step 4: Sew the First Round
Taking the square to the sewing machine, begin sewing at the edge of the fabric. Sew close to the right hand fold using a medium long stitch. The pins are in place just as markers for demonstration.
Step 5: Continue Sewing the First Round
Form the second fold as you sew, turning under the hem allowance, making the fold 1/8 to 1/4 inch wide, finger pressing it as you go.
It should look like the second image as it comes out of the presser foot. Sew right to the end of the first side. There is no need to backstitch at either end.
Step 6: Finish the First Round
Begin the second side at the edge of the fabric.
Fold under the hem allowance as before. Complete this side and sides three and four in the same way.
Step 7: Prepare to Trim the Hem Allowance.
The first image shows the right side after the first round of sewing.
The second image shows the wrong side.
With the wrong side up, I stretch one side of the scarf, holding each end with a pin, which goes through the scarf into my padded table.
Step 8: Cutting the Hem Allowance
Trim the hem allowance close to the stitching with sharp long bladed scissors.
If you have pinned the fabric as I did, slide your hand under the pinned side.
Slip the blade of the scissors under the hem allowance and cut slowly with long smooth strokes.
Keep a space between your fingers so as not to press the fabric upwards towards the cutting portion of the blades.
It should look like the second image, when trimmed.
Step 9: Folding the Corners
Image 1: Hold a corner of the square between your hands as in this image.
Image 2: Fold over the right side using the pressed fold as the fold point.
Image 3: Then fold over the left side, in the same way, tucking in stray ends.
If hemming cotton you can dab a couple of drops of water on the corner, to help keep the stray ends in place, and more easily make a neat fold.
It is important to fold the right side first, as this makes it easier to manage the corners when sewing.
Step 10: Pinning the Corners
Insert a long pin from the under side through the right fold.
Pass it across the corner as shown and insert it into the left side.
Do all four corners this way.
Step 11: Sewing the Second Round.
Fold the hem over on the pressed fold along one side and begin sewing along one side.
Don't begin at a corner! Use a medium long stitch and sew over the stitching of the first round. There is no need to backstitch.
Continue to fold over the hem on the pressed fold, as you sew.
Step 12: Making the Corner - First Step
Sew right to the end, then make an extra stitch at the edge.
Leaving the needle down, lift the presser foot, rotate the square 180 degrees. Lower the foot, take two - three stitches forward as needed to secure the corner. Leave the pin in place, and use it as a handle to help move the corner through, as you see in the image. Use the hand wheel to sew slowly, easing the corner through.
If the corner won't move through, lift the presser foot, ease the corner through using the pin to assist, lower the foot, and then stitch.
Step 13: Finishing the Corner - Second Step
With the needle down, lift the presser foot, rotate the square 90 degrees, so as to begin sewing the second side.
Lower the foot, and stitch slowly, again using the pin to help ease the corner through.
Images 2 & 3:Using the pin as a handle - the corners are the trickiest part of the square, but with a little practice, stitching slowly using the hand wheel as needed, lifting and lowering the presser foot when the corner will not move through and using the pin as a handle to ease the corner through, it becomes easier.
Step 14: Complete the Second Round
Finish the remaining sides and corners in the same way. Meet up where you started, and sew several stitches over the beginning stitches, and then backstitch.
Step 15: Press the Hem
Press the hem to set the folds, and make it smooth.
Step 16: Samples of Finished Hems
Here is a view of the finished chiffon hem and also samples of satin and cotton.