Best Pressed

I took a fine dress making class in 2013.  The information was so useful, I just wanted to share it with everyone.

I’ve seen so many garments that turned out so bad, because they failed to press their seams after each one.  My professor told us. When you want to make a great garment, you’ll spend 4x more time at the ironing board, than you will at the sewing machine.  I did this and I’m glad I did.

In the beginning, I wanted to just hurry up and get the garment done, that I was working on.  I wanted to take shortcuts, but I always turned out garments that really disappointed me and weren’t wearable.  I wanted a great garment, but I didn’t want to take the time to do things right.  After taking this class, I finally realized, I can’t have both.  I couldn’t take shortcuts and expect a professional looking garment.  I needed to take pride in my work. Sometimes, it takes hand sewing or hand basting or ironing after EVERY seam I sew, to get the best results.


This is how I was taught to iron after every seam  that I sew.

For every seam you sew, you’ll press it 4 times. Be sure to always use a pressing cloth. I didn’t use a pressing cloth because I just used a scrap of fabric.  It wasn’t a garment.

The first press.  After you sew the two pieces of fabric together, press, one side.  Press, don’t slide your iron over the seam.  Just hold and press.

Press 1

The second press. Now flip the fabric over and press the other side.

Press 2

The third press. Open the fabric and place the right side down.  Open and press the seam allowance open.

press 3 b

Sometimes, it’s easier to press it open on a sleeve roll or tailors ham

press 4 c

The forth press: Flip the fabric over and press the seam from the right side of the fabric.

press 6


press 7

I hope this helps! Have a great sewing day!


Narrow Hems- Tutorial

This hem can be used on chiffon, organza, lining, or any other type of delicate fabric.

To create a narrow hem on chiffon or organza, start by cutting your fabric about 1.25 inches longer than your desired hem length.  In the picture, I measured a 1″ hem.

1. Measure 1 1/4″ up from the raw edge of your fabric and mark your fabric. Do this all the way around your garment.


2. Fold your hem on that line and press with an iron, being careful not to pull the fabric.

3. Sew as close to the fold line as you can get, without going off the fabric.


4. Use duck-billed scissors and trim the hem off, cutting as close to the stitch line as you can get without cutting the threads.



5. Now, fold the hem up, just past the original stitch line and stitch close to the fold again.


6. Press the hem again.