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Learn the Four Fastest Flat-Fell Seams

Threads magazine - 137 – June/July 2008

Sharon K. Blair shows you how to make the four fastest fells — wrapped, stitch and fold, fold and stitch, and double-fold — and which fabrics are best suited fabrics for each. You’ll also learn the standard fell seam and the fake fell, so you can compare them. These fast versions will surely speed up your sewing.

By learning simple techniques, you can create a garment that is as finished on the inside as it is on the outside. Put on your designer cap, and focus on all of the details of a jacket or blouse—including the inside. Rather than hiding your craftsmanship and fully lining a garment, use flat-fell seams to clean finish them. These seams wrap around themselves, so they encase and hide raw edges. Flat-fell seams differ from standing fells, which look more like French seams. Here, I’ll show you how to make the four fastest fells—wrapped, stitch and fold, fold and stitch, and double-fold—and which fabrics are best suited fabrics for each. I’ll also show you the standard fell seam and the fake fell, so you can compare them. My fast versions will surely speed up your sewing.


This is a fine seam for sheer, fragile fabrics but also a sturdy seam for solid construction. Use it to add a professional touch to your shirts.

tuck the raw edges under the stitching line to create wrapped flat-fell seams
Start with right sides together, and stitch a 5⁄8 inch seam allowance. Open the garment flat. Fold the seam allowances together in one direction, tucking both raw edges under to the stitching line.

fold the seam allowances, then press and edgestitch the fold for wrapped flat-fell seams
Fold the seam allowances again in the same direction. Press and edgestitch the folded edge.

Stitch and fold

Less stable fabrics such as corduroy and velvet are ideal for the stitch and fold method.

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Previous: Creating Professional-Looking Flat-Felled Shirt Seams Next: Rolling and Felling Feet


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