French seams are my favourite way to enclose seams on lightweight woven fabrics. It only takes a few extra steps and the finish on the seams is well worth the effort.
I’ve created a video demonstrating French Seams and I’ve also written it out into four easy steps just beneath the video if you prefer. Apologies it is in portrait mode, I originally created it for demonstrating on Instagram but thought it could also be of use here! The pattern mentioned in the video is the Evelyn Blouse.
Four easy steps to get French Seams
1. Place the layers wrong side together.
The first seam you make will be visible on the outside of the garment, but don’t worry, the final steps hide this away.
2. Sew a 1/4″ seam.
3. Press & turn.
Open up the piece and press the seam to one side. It doesn’t matter which side at this point. Then turn the piece RS together and press, making sure the seam is right on the edge of the fabric.
4. Sew a 3/8″ seam.
Now the seam will only be visible from the wrong side of the fabric. Press the finished french seam to the back.
Note: You can end up with a slightly smaller finished French seam by sewing a 3/8″ seam during step 2, trimming this to 1/4″ and then sewing a 1/4″ seam for step 4. I don’t do it this way around because I find sewing the second seam at 1/4″ often means stray threads from the fraying fabric edge are more likely to peek through to the right side of the fabric.