Faux-French Seams for Curves + Another Shirt No. 1


I love a French seam. I’ll French any seam I can. Even curves. But, French seams don’t really work well with curves. They look great on the inside but are bunchy as heck when you turn the garment right side out. Enter the Faux-French seam!

Step 1 Sew a regular seam (right sides together).

Step 2 Press raw edges in. Above shows one side pressed.

Step 4 Topstitch as close to the edge as you can.

Voila! Encased edges without the bunching! Here’s the top right side out and it’s almost perfectly smooth.

Here are the steps in drawn form since the black fabric makes it a little hard to see what’s going on.

Shirt No 1 Hack I’ve been on a big Shirt No. 1 kick. It’s a simple sew and lends itself to so many fabrics. After making two (one solid, one in a print), I knew it would be the perfect pattern to achieve all of my Ace & Jig desires. This hack is a great option if you have a bunch of smaller fabric pieces.

First draw in the desired seam lines and cut. Add seam allowance where the pieces will join together (any side you cut along will need added seam allowance). I taped additional paper directly onto the pattern pieces so that I could use my rotary cutter and reuse this pattern again later. Square the seam allowance if pieces join on a diagonal line like it did along the shoulder seam. Squaring will help the pieces come together without extra fabric sticking out. I also squared off the hem and side seams. That’s pretty much it!

6 Replies to “Faux-French Seams for Curves + Another Shirt No. 1”

  1. Thanks! What a great idea! My underarm curve was too sharp to do the complete seam like this. But I clipped the sharp curve, pressed those seam pieces inward, and top stitched each of them. Much neater than just a plain clipped seam!

  2. This post is beautiful. Thanks for the tips. Short and concise. I’m looking forward to making many different shirt no 1 hacks.

  3. I immediately thought Ace & Jig when I saw your new shirt! I made my first Shirt no 1 recently with French seams. I did have some bunching at the underarm but it was cured once I pressed the seam allowance to the back of the shirt– this required a bit of coaxing with a pressing ham. I will have to try this method when my topstitching skills improve. Thanks also for the pattern hack!

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