Getting Rid Of Bulk


Just a quick one! The Grainline Archer shirt is hemmed by turning over two quarter inch folds and stitching. My plaid is a relatively thick fabric and around the button band, this was becoming bulky. So I took some scissors and trimmed  away some of that bulk in the shallow section of the first fold. I was careful to stay away from the finished edge of my button band – I didn’t want raw edges poking out.

My sewing teacher, Beth, says that the quality of a finished item lies in the innards – how you’ve graded seams, trimmed, fused – all the stuff you can’t see. Except you can see it, in how well a collar sits or a button band is hemmed.

We’re magicians, casting invisible spells. Wands to the ready!

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13 Responses to Getting Rid Of Bulk

  1. I swear, someone needs to make a post (or a book) of all the little things you don’t usually learn when learning to sew, and sometimes have to learn the hard way. It was a long time before I realized you could trim the bulk from folded seams like that, until I saw a picture in a vintage sewing book and thought, “I didn’t know I was allowed to *do* that!”

  2. charlottepb says:

    I must say I have learnt the hard way, but it makes such a difference when something looks just as good in the inside.

  3. ClaireE says:

    I guess making clothes can be a little like looking after yourself – take care of the inside and it will show on the outside. Pity I let that drop every now and then!

  4. Michelle says:

    I’m constantly learning little tips from lovely sewing bloggers like you. Sometimes the smallest things can make the biggest difference in a garment. This is certainly a useful trick to my ever-expanding list of sewing skills.

  5. suth2 says:

    Another thing learnt from your blog. I am ever so grateful.

  6. Adrienne says:

    Thanks for the tip, Karen! I also try to trim and grade away as much as possible, but I need to educate myself further on the proper way to do it.

  7. yoshimi says:

    Thank you for posting this! Certainly, more than many procedures in sewing won’t show up on the surface of the garments, but there are definitely consequences that we can feel. I’m usually too shy to tell what I did for my self-made garments in my blog because they can easily become boring explanations while my bad typing. Love how you describe things here!

  8. Bri says:

    Grading makes the garment. I’m with you there!

  9. Meg says:

    I agree. These ‘little things’ are markers of quality, but almost shrouded in secrecy. But maybe that’s the point. I get nervous when attempting seam grading. I can’t seem to find a balance between finishing the seams so they don’t ravel and trimming down bulk…

  10. sallie says:

    Brilliant tip! I feel like I’ve done this in a super haphazard way before, just hacking into places that I thought were too bulky. I’ll have to remember that there is a ‘way’ to do these things in the future!

  11. Erika says:

    Oh, bulk tips! Very much appriciated, tnx!

  12. I am a pressing fiend – that seems to be one of the things that people aren’t aware of that makes SUCH a difference to a finished garment. And that is PRESSING not IRONING! (Sorry for shouting)

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