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  • Writer's pictureChristine Dierk

An Earnest Hemming Way

One good thing about being an introvert is that a number of my hobbies are uninterrupted. Before the "shelter in place" order, I spent many a weekend indoors working on sewing projects, drinking tea with roommates, and spending quiet nights in. While I miss going on hikes and catching up with friends in person, I'm grateful to have a number of indoor hobbies that I love and can focus on.

I made this dress using New Look 6508 and cotton twill fabric from JoAnn. I added cap sleeves borrowed from a different pattern (likely New Look 6262). This simple dress features box pleats, darts, and pockets; the fabric features a subtle geometric print. Believe it or not, this dress took me over a year to finish. Nothing about this pattern is complex, but the instructions say to slipstitch (e.g. hand stitch) the entirety of the hem. Woof.

Hand-stitching the hem took me at least four sittings spanning over 15 months. Given the volume of the skirt (and therefore the length of the hem), I found it incredibly hard to find the motivation to complete this dress. I usually watch Project Runway or Grey's Anatomy to help get me through hand-stitched portions of dresses. Slipstitching a lining over a waistline seam will take me slightly longer than one episode. Depending on how many, sewing buttons can take me between 1 and 3 episodes. This hem took SO MANY EPISODES that I lost count. In the end, I don't think a slipstitched hem is much less visible than a top-stitched hem (certainly not commensurate to the time invested).

I don't see myself slipstitching many hems in the future.


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