HEMMING AND HAWING

Well, not “hawing.”  Just hemming.

In answer to the question, “What do you mean by ‘Italian hemming’ since there are so many things that go by that name?” I trot out this picture of my Lord Ganesh cloth’s corner:

gane-6 gane-5

The person who asked the question is spot on.  There are many types of hemming with confusing, occasionally overlapping names.  Some are single pass rolled or folded hems like mine, others are double rows of stitching.  I don’t remember where I learned this, but “Italian hemming” was the name attached.

Basically, the stitch I learned is similar to a hemming technique employed in withdrawn thread work, but in this case is done without removing any threads, as a pulled thread stitch.  This style of hemming is worked on the reverse, and folds up/fixes the hem/makes the decorative pulled thread “dots” all in one pass. The stitches that make the vertical legs (as opposed to the stitches that do the horizontal bundling), are worked solely through the hem fold, and do not pierce the front or display side of the piece. All of the folding up is done with finger-pressing, neatly crimping the edges tight between thumb and forefinger, just ahead of the actual stitching.  The same for the mitered corners – no ironing here, just careful folding along the threads of the weave, going slowly and working under a strong light.

I’m not the neatest at it, being long out of practice, but I’m finished, and not entirely displeased with the final product.

2 responses

  1. I think it is a beautiful finished piece. I love the hemming and have watched a guest on Martha Pullen stitch that.

  2. Thank you! I tried to locate the instructions for the technique following your previous post. I appreciate the description and seeing Lord Ganesh hemmed in.

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