Hems for Unlined Tabula Rasa Jackets

Summer has arrived here in the mid-Atlantic where I live and work.  May was chilly and wet, so all of a sudden my unlined summer Tabula Rasa Jackets (TRJ) are coming out of the closet.  Just like our conversation about summer pants fabrics, the fabrics I choose to sew for summer tops are light weight and washable.  So, their engineering needs to be washing machine safe too. Today we will focus on hems.

Here is a photo gallery of unlined washable jacket hems and descriptions to inspire your sewing.  I have photographed the right and wrong side of each hem so you can see the engineering on both sides.  See photos of these complete jackets by clicking to the gallery where highlighted.  I will post the rest of the complete garments at raecumbie on Instagram. ( If your photos are wonky, visit www.fitforartpatterns.com to see the orderly post)

Deep Hems – If I have enough fabric, I often add a deep single or double folded hem to an unlined summer top.  They add weight, allowing the top to hang a little better over your pants, dresses or skirts.

Inside of the swiss dot jacket.

Inside of the swiss dot jacket.

Outside of the deep swiss dot hem.

Outside of the deep swiss dot hem.

Pink paisley and swiss dot floral TRJ has a double turned 1 5/8” hem. Cut the front, side and back pieces 3¼” longer than the desired finished length, press, then topstitch the hem in place.

 

Black voille inside

Black voille inside

Black voille TRJ

Black voille TRJ outside

 

 

 

Black voile TRJ has a 2½” hem allowing for 2¼” slits at each seam. The seam allowance was turned under ¼” and topstitched in place after the slits were formed.  The front, back and sides were cut 2 ¾” longer than the desired finished length.  Instructions for adding a side slit can be found in the Shirt Variations for the TRJ pattern.

 

Blue shirt facings on the inside

Blue shirt facings on the inside

Blue shirt with slit

Blue shirt with slit

Floral TRJ with Shirt Variation collar and slits has a faced 2½” hem with 2 1/4″slits at each side seam. The facings were cut 3 1/8 deep, stitched on with a 5/8” seam allowance along both the hems and slits.  The facing was finished with a serged overlock edge before being topstitched into place.

Peach cotton hem on the inside

Peach cotton hem on the inside

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Peach cotton jacket from the outside with visible hem binding

 

 

 

 

 

 

Peach cotton jacquard TRJ has a 2½” faced hem as well. The facing was cut 4” deep.  It was sewn on along the hem with a ½” seam, then wrapped to the front, leaving ½” exposed on the right side.  The raw edge was pressed under ½” and hand stitched into place.

 

Standard hems, typically between 1 ¼” and 1¾” deep, are a fine finish on opaque fabrics.

Blue cotton standard hem

Blue cotton standard hem

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Outside of the blue cotton jacket

Blue cotton TRJ has a 1¼” hem supported with a strip of fusible tricot interfacing. The raw edge was overlocked on the serger before the hem was topstitched into place.

 

 

The outside of this vibrant print, you don't even notice the stitching.

The outside of this vibrant print, you don’t even notice the stitching.

Black cotton outside

Black cotton inside, love the pockets.

 

Black batik cotton TRJ has a turned and topstitched 1¾” hem. The edge of the hem is the selvedge so no finish was necessary.  Notice that the interior pockets are supported by the hem to hold a few essentials.  You can read more about these pockets, and the narrower bands on most of these jackets, in the Band Variations and Pockets for the TRJ pattern.

 

 

 

Narrow Hems – These are perfect if you do not have enough fabric or want a soft swingy hem.

 

The outside of mixed cotton top with rolled edge seam

The outside of mixed cotton top with rolled edge seam

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Inside of the rolled hem cotton top.

Mixed cotton jacket’s seams and hems are finished on the outside using the rolled edge setting on the serger. This technique is explained in Swing Variations for the TRJ.

 

 

  1. Inside of the rayon swing hem

    Inside of the rayon swing hem

Rayon TR top with swing variation hem has a ¼” turned and topstitched hem. The raw edge was finished with the 3 thread overlock on the serger in advance of the topstitching.

Rayon top from the front.

Rayon top from the front.

 

Right side of orange linen jacket

Wrong side of orange linen jacket

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Orange Linen TRJ with Rain or Shine Variations has a bias tape bound hem. Bias tape was unfolded along one edge and stitched onto the back side.  Then it was wrapped to the front along the center fold line and topstitched into place.

Right side of the orange linen with bound hem.

Right side of the orange linen with bound hem.

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Shirttail hem on the outside

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our last little hem is on Carrie’s swing variation vest.  It is a simple double turned 1/4″ shirttail hem.  This fabric is very light weight so it adds a little extra drape.

Shirttail hem on the inside.

Shirttail hem on the inside.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Have you used other hem techniques for unlined summer tops?  I think a baby hem would work on many summer tops, but I did not have a sample to show you.  I will put that on my summer sewing list.  Directions for a baby hem can be found on page 6 of the Swing Variations for the Tabula Rasa Jacket direction booklet.  (If your text and photos are out of order, visit www.fitforartpatterns.com to read it in an orderly fashion.)

Happy Sewing, RAE

PS.  All the info is available for the retreat.  Hope your are planning to join us.  We would love to sew with you and see all the lovely hems you are creating.

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