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  1. #1
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    tarp hem question

    When using grosgrain on outside edges of cat cut tarp, is it necessary to roll hem first or is it okay to just sew grosgrain tape to single layer sil? Rolling a hem on a curve bothers my compulsion for flat, neat tarp edges.

  2. #2
    Dutch's Avatar
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    You should roll it. It will make it much more stronger.
    Peace Dutch
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  3. #3
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    I was looking at Patrick's close-up pics of his new homemade tarp: http://www.hammockforums.net/forum/s...ead.php?t=5959
    I wonder if he rolled first. Is it possible to get edges to look that good with rolled hem on a curve?

  4. #4
    Dutch's Avatar
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    Patrick's hems do look perfect. I will let him answer if they are rolled or not. If you want your hems to look perfect also I would baste it before adding the grossgrain. I know it is more work, but it will come out looking great and it may be less fustrating in the end.
    Peace Dutch
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  5. #5
    Senior Member lenle01's Avatar
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    You can buy a rolled hem foot for your sewing machine. Different hem widths are available. They only cost 10 to 15 dollars.

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    Rolled Hem Hints?

    Quote Originally Posted by lenle01 View Post
    You can buy a rolled hem foot for your sewing machine. Different hem widths are available. They only cost 10 to 15 dollars.
    I have yet to get a rolled hem foot to work for more than an inch or so. Any hints? Sure would be nice to get a nice smooth hem with less hassle than what I've been going through.

  7. #7
    Senior Member lenle01's Avatar
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    rolled hem hints

    Lot's of practice! Each machine is different. I just ordered mine after trying one out on my mom's machine. I was using cotton and not nylon. I'm in the same boat as you. I can say that it was easiest when I held the edge of the material kinda pre rolling it with the curve of my thumb. I've read a few posts of other people using them. I tried searching for them this morning w/no success. Every time you put hem into the search engine you get 11 pages of posts to dig thru. Hopefully someone that uses one a lot will chime in.

  8. #8
    you can sew the ggr directly to the raw edge, and then go back after and roll that, the stiffness of the ggr will make it really easy to roll to that width. should be pretty easy to get a good finish, except it takes longer because you're sewing it twice.

  9. #9
    Senior Member TeeDee's Avatar
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    The one thing I have found to be the most useful for sewing curved hems is:


    A heat application instrument and platform


    More commonly known as an iron and ironing board.

    The hardest thing in hemming a curve, especially a long curve, is getting the fabric to lay right. Hemming a curve means that you are going to be rolling the fabric on the bias which means that the fabric will fight you every step of the way.

    When you sew the curve, you have one attempt and one attempt only to get it right and to get the fabric to lay right.

    With an iron you can always and easily go back and correct mistakes until you get it right. The heat of the iron helps considerably in getting the fabric to behave and lay properly.

    Set up the ironing board and iron right next to the sewing machine and as soon as you finish the ironing and have the hem rolled just right and ironed flat, immediately sew it down. The hem has been "set" by the heat of the iron and your only job is guiding the fabric through the sewing machine while holding the fabric flat. Much simpler. All the real work has been done in the ironing.

    Sometimes it also helps to baste the hem immediately after ironing, especially if you are going to be doing multiple curved hems, like both sides of a tarp.

    Always remember to follow the heat settings on the iron for the fabric and experiment with some scrap fabric before setting hot iron to the fabric of your project.

    Hope this helps. I learned this tip by watching my semi-pro seamstress wife for almost 50 years. When she is sewing, the ironing board and iron is permanently set-up for immediate use.

  10. #10
    GrizzlyAdams's Avatar
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    nice tip TeeDee, thanks.

    I could have used this last night when I was putting a double-roll hem on a parabola-shaped end-cap, made of sil. The gentle curve of a cat-cut tarp has nuthin on the small turning radius at the bottom of this parabola!

    Like anyone trained in real analysis I approximated the curve with a sequence of straight line mini-hems <grin>

    Grizz

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