Mary Anne Tries to Sew Herself a Swim Suit, Part 4

So this bit, I feel like I must have gotten something wrong. The instructions for sewing in the elastics say:

– sew the elastic to the edge of the fabric, like around the armhole (yes, good)
– fold it over, sew it down again, encasing the elastic completely in the fabric (yes, also good, no more visible elastic)

But then it goes on to the next thing. And there’s a raw edge of fabric visible on the inside, and I feel like that can’t be right — I mean, you can’t see it when you’re wearing the suit, but it’s definitely visible when it’s hanging up, and I don’t think I’ve ever seen raw edges on fabric-encased elastics like that before? Is there another step missing from the instructions, where you fold it over one more time to hide the raw edge, or am I just being compulsive about this now?

I ironed it down after taking the photo, so it’s not quite as wrinkly, but still, it looks wrong to me.

(I don’t know if you can see what I’m talking about in the photo, I hope if not, that I’ve explained it clearly enough.)

Also in this photo, I’m in the process of adding a nice finishing band to the bottom of the swimsuit top. The pattern is not going to match perfectly, but that’s because I don’t work at a couture atelier, and I don’t have the patience or the time to obsess over that kind of detail.

1 thought on “Mary Anne Tries to Sew Herself a Swim Suit, Part 4”

  1. Hi! I’m about to sew up the Sandpiper myself and I stumbled across your post. The elastic technique that leaves a raw edge is actually pretty common in store-bought suits (even the really pricey ones – I still have a Prima Donna set from when I could fit in such things, and it’s made that way) but it’s a bit more hidden because they use a serger for the first step of sewing the elastic to the edge, so the raw edge is enclosed and partially covered by the serger thread. You can see what the serged edge looks like inside here:

    But as you say, it’s folded in where you can’t see it when it’s on, and swim fabrics usually don’t fray, so I wouldn’t worry about it too much as long as it’s comfortable. If you do want to try a finished edge on the inside, you can try binding the edge with a piece of fabric folded in half lengthwise (baste the raw edges together and treat as one so the fold, not the raw edge, will end up on the inside), using fold-over elastic, or rolling your binding once more to the inside before topstitching to hide the raw edge.

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