Sheer Magic!

BillieBurkby Guest Sewer, Billie Burk

I simply had to share this technique with you, perfected by perhaps the most talented student I have ever had the pleasure to have.

Her work is impeccable! She not only has the capacity to think outside of the box, but is willing to share her discoveries. ~Sandra


The beautiful sheer fabrics that are available to us require and deserve neat, narrow seams.  Perfect seams, as narrow as 1/8th inch, are no longer difficult or tedious to accomplish.  We have the tools to make the process easy and fun!SheerFabric

  • Set your serger to a narrow, three-thread rolled edge:  This means your lower looper will be    tight and the stitch finger will be pulled towards you so it is not involved in the stitch.  (check your serger manual for settings.)
  • Start with the WRONG sides of the fabric facing each other.  If you have standard 5/8th seam allowances, you will be trimming off a generous 1/4 inch.
  • Pull on the thread tail on your serger as you feed the fabric.  Place the fabric so that the cutter cuts off the required amount.  The resulting rolled seam will be neat and free of fuzzies. 
  • At your iron, open the seam and press the roll first to one side and then the other.  Now turn the seam RIGHT sides together and press the edge.  If your fabric is stubborn and slippery, you might want to baste the edge before you press.
  • On your regular sewing machine, use either a pin tuck foot, or a narrow cording foot (any foot with a narrow groove will do).  The roll that you have produced at the edge of your seam is ideal for feeding through the groove under the foot. Move your needle so that the seam will be as narrow as practicable.

The machine will carry the seam through without much help from you. The resulting seam will be even, clean and narrow.  Perfect for showing through your beautiful sheer garment.

Sheer magic!

Note:  I get the best results when I use fine thread such as Metrolene.


  • Have you made a garment out of sheer fabric? Show it off by posting it on our Garment Gallery!
  • To learn more about working with sheer fabrics and many other great fabrics, get your copy of More Fabric Savvy .
  • Are you ready to take your sewing to the next level? Subscribe to the Power Sewing WebTV Show where Sandra and her co-host, Ron Collins, will show you techniques that will make every garment sewing project a success!