This tutorial will show how to sew the lettuce edging on a sewing machine. The lettuce edge hem stitch is typically found on little girls' clothing, as it makes a feminine ruffled edge.
To sew a lettuce edge hem, a stretchy fabric such as a knit is necessary. This is because the fabric must be stretched while sewing. Once the fabric relaxes, it curls.
Where did the lettuce edge hem come from?
This hem was invented by Stephen Burrows, an African-American designer, in the 1970s. Burrows had a love of exaggerating and elaborating stitching. He used colorful threads and left them showing in his work instead of hiding them.
The lettuce edge hem is a zig-zag stitch, which became Burrows' signature style.
Learn more about sewing the lettuce edge hem with a machine by watching our video or keep reading this post.
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WHAT YOU NEED for lettuce edging:
- Stretchy, knit fabric
- Threaded sewing machine
INSTRUCTIONS on how to sew lettuce edging
STEP 1: Fold the fabric on the hem line
Fold the stretchy fabric on the hem line, leaving about a half-inch as the hem allowance.
Flip the fabric to the front. The lettuce edge hemming will be done with the right side of the fabric facing up.
STEP 2: Prepare the machine for the lettuce edge hem stitch
The stitch used for the lettuce edge stitch is the zig-zag stitch. Usually the sewing machine is set to the narrowest and shortest zig-zag stitch possible. However, it is important to practice until you find the stitch length and width that you prefer.
For this tutorial, a wide zig-zag stitch is used for ease of demonstration.
step 3: begin sewing the lettuce edge hem stitch
Put the fabric under the sewing machine presser foot and back tack.
While sewing, use your hands to pull the fabric from both the front and the back to stretch the knit.
The more the fabric is stretched, the curlier the hem will be.
While stitching, the needle should fall off of the fabric on one side and stitch onto the fabric on the other. As the stitching continues, the curl on the hem will become visible.
If the lettuce edging is not curly enough, simply go back over the stitching once again to form a curlier hem.
The photo below shows a lettuce edge hem stitched on two sides of a piece of fabric.
The photo below shows the fabric from the back.
step 4: Trim the material close to the lettuce edge hem stitching line
Turning the fabric over, there will be the wide hem left. Using scissors, carefully trim the fabric as close to the stitching line as possible without cutting through the stitching.
Congratulations! The lettuce edging hem is complete! Such a cute hem for a feminine look! The photo below shows the finished hem from the front.
And below is the back showing the trimmed hem.
I hope you enjoyed this tutorial on sewing the lettuce edge hem stitch with a sewing machine. Try this technique out! The result is so cute and curly!
If you have any questions about this project, contact us through the YouTube Video
comments or our Contact Us page. We respond to questions in e-mails and YouTube comments regularly.
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