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Recycling ideas: make scallop hem shorts from old shorts

Green crafts, Pants, Recycle, Sewing  |  August 31st 2011  |  0 Comment

So you ready to learn how to create a scallop hem on any old pair of shorts? Lets do it!


1) Start with your shorts

2) Now fold the hem up a couple of inches with right sides together

3) Make your scallop stencil. As with my previous scallop hem project, I used contact plastic – that way you can stick it to your fabric, and have an easy guide! Lay out your contact plastic with the paper side upwards. I used a glass with a 3.5” diameter.  Place your glass so that the edge of the glass lines up with the edge of the paper, and trace half way round. Do this all the way along the edge, overlapping each half circle evenly, and making sure you’re always lined up with the edge of the paper. Last time I chose to make deep scallops by butting up the glass to the edge of each half circle, but this time I wanted them more shallow, so I overlapped them so that they were only 1” high.

4) Cut your stencil out and remove the paper backing. Stick it to your shorts, so that the edge of the scallops is where you would like your finished hem to be. For me this was ½” from the folded edge.

5) Sew around the stencil as close as you can to the edge without actually sewing on it. But if you do, don’t freak out!! It’ll still come off, it just means that you’ll probably rip your stencil a bit and it might not be as re-usable.

6) Keep in mind where your stencil join is, i made sure mine would be inbetween the legs so that if i ended up with a funky shaped scallop it would be hidden

7) Peel off your stencil carefully, and stick it back on the backing paper so that you can use it again

8) Cut inbetween the scallops, as close as you dare to the stitches, without actually cutting them.

9) Trim the excess fabric around the scallops. I used pinking shears, because they’re basically like cutting neat little notches around the edge – but you could just as easily just trim very close to the stitches and achieve the same result

10) Now turn your hem the right way round, so that the right sides of fabric is facing outwards. Using your hand, “push” out the scallops and shape them with your hands.

11) Move over to the iron, and press them nice and crisply. Spend some time doing this properly, because the neater and more evenly you do it, the better your scallops will look.

12) Now to finish up that hem on the inside. In an ideal world I would not have been feeling lazy, and would have handstitched the hem so that it would be invisible from the outside – but I was tired, so I just topstitched right over the top. It’s not bad, but if I did it again I’d do it by hand.

And there you have it! Enjoy your shorts!!

Source: blog.megannielsen.com