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November 22, 2022
My favorite way to hem a circle skirt is to use this stuff: HeatnBond Soft Stretch Lite. You iron it on, and it stretches with your fabric. I have found it at Walmart, Joann, Hobby Lobby, and Amazon. There is also a Soft Stretch Ultra version, but I find this one to be a little too bulky for my taste. For the tutorial fabric, I used this Teal Daisy Print from the Club collection on cotton-spandex jersey and mustard cotton-spandex jersey as a coordinate.
First, apply the Soft Stretch to the back side of your skirt along the hemline with your iron, keeping the backing attached and facing up. This part can get a little tricky since the backing doesn’t stretch, but just hug your edge and go slowly. When you’ve applied it to the whole hemline and it’s cooled down, go ahead and peel off that backing. You’ll see the clear Soft Stretch attached to your fabric, ready to do its job.
Now take your fabric and flip that hemline over, using the Soft Stretch as a guide for your hem. The rolls of Soft Stretch come in 5/8” width, which I find works really great because most of my patterns either call for a ½” or ¾” hem allowance, and it’s right in between and that 1/8” doesn’t make much of a difference.
A little tip: when I come to a seam, I like to make a little snip in the seam allowance (without clipping through the stitch on the edge. Then when I flip the seam over, I can nest the seam allowance. It makes it a lot easier for a twin needle or coverstitch to get over the seam.
Once you’ve got it all flipped and ironed, you’re ready to hem. I have a coverstitch machine, but this method works wonderfully for twin needles and other stretch stitches, too!
And, now you have a beautifully hemmed circle skirt! This circle skirt became a Rosemary Raglan from Peek-a-boo Pattern Shop.
Another great way to hem a circle skirt is to use bias tape. Both single fold and double fold bias tape can work – it just depends on the look you’re going for. For this one, I wanted something that would blend in with the inside of the skirt, so I stuck with white. But colors and prints can be fun, too, for a bright pop!
I used some store-bought single fold bias tape, but homemade tape works great, too. Since the hem of the skirt doesn’t need to stretch, it’s okay to use a woven bias tape. For the fabric, I used this lovely Christmas floral print from the Club collection on cotton-spandex jersey (plus a little more of that mustard cotton-spandex for the bow back because it worked well here, too).
To start, open up one of the folded edges of your bias tape and then fold over the beginning edge of your bias tape ½”. Start pinning or clipping it the right side of your fabric. I try to start at the side seam of the skirt, but this was a double circle skirt and had no seam. I usually only clip the first little bit and then work slowly and carefully as I attach the rest. You’re going to sew right along that crease in the bias tape.Once you get all the way around the circle, overlap your end ½” over the top of your folded over edge, and then trim your tape.
Iron your seam allowance towards the skirt (making sure to keep that other end of your tape folded) and then fold over your bias tape and iron that down, as well. Go slowly to make sure it doesn’t get any wrinkles or folds.Finally, sew about 1/8” from the edge of your bias tape to secure it to the skirt. Sew all the way around the skirt, and you’re done!
I used this skirt for a Skyler tunic from Simple Life Pattern Company.
I use both of these methods all the time for hemming circle skirts! They work so well, look great when finished, and really speed up my hemming process.
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