A while back we all watched the contestants on The Great British Sewing Bee struggle while sewing with lace. As such we thought we help to demystify the process by sharing some of our simple tips.
- A lot of people fret over which is the ‘right’ side of the lace fabric, as it can look the same on both sides. Some lace may have a side that is smoother than the other, but you should just choose the side that is going to work best for your project. Just make sure you always use the same side as the ‘right’ side throughout your project.
- If you are sewing the lace on a machine, you may find that the weave of the lace is so open it easily gets sucked into the machine’s workings. To stop this from happening (as much as is possible) sew a straight hem on a scrap piece of cotton or lightweight canvas. Once you have completed the hem, leave the needle down, but raise the presser foot and place your lace underneath. Continue to sew as usual.
- You should try to use a French seam for hiding the raw edges of fabric, this will give the finished project a clean and tidy look.
- When you are trying to hold the pattern pieces in place, you may find it easier to use weights rather than pins. If you don’t have any dedicated weights, improvise and use tins, or full bottles (that are securely closed).
- If you decide to iron your lace fabrics before you start, make sure you use a low heat and no steam, as lace is amazingly easy to burn.
- If you have bought lace, and think that it has been starched by the shop; give it a gentle hand wash in cool water and lay it flat to dry.
- Lace won’t unravel, so if you cut the edges neatly, you shouldn’t have to hem the garment.
If this has made you feel more confident (and we hope it has!) you can view all of our lace fabrics here.