Sewing an Edge on Tulle

By Kathryn Hatashita-Lee
Sew, a subtle finish
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Lightweight tulle features a fine network of fibers or netting that can accent bridal veils, costumes and party decorations. Unlike woven fabrics that can unravel, tulle can display with or without an edged finish. Apply a fabric ribbon that matches or contrasts with the tulle’s color for a more distinct contour. Encase the raw edge of tulle in slim bias tape for a more sturdy form. Sew a rolled hem with the help of a hemmer foot for a subtle and economical finish.

Sewing with Ribbon

Step 1

Press the fabric ribbon with a low heat setting on the iron.

Step 2

Pin the ribbon to the edge of the tulle. If the ribbon is too narrow, try hand-basting the ribbon with a needle and thread to set in place temporarily.

Step 3

Place the ribbon and tulle over the sewing machine’s needle plate. Carefully lower the presser foot on the ribbon.

Step 4

Hold the needle and bobbin threads toward the back of the machine to avoid jamming.

Step 5

Adjust the stitch selector for the desired stitch. For example, you may prefer a straight stitch or a narrow zig-zag stitch.

Step 6

Machine stitch close to the edge of the ribbon. Remove every pin as the fabric approaches the needle. Back-stitch a few stitches to secure the thread ends. Trim the threads. If the ribbon requires two rows of stitching, stitch parallel to the first stitching line.

Step 7

Remove the basted thread.

Sewing with Bias Tape

Step 1

Press the bias tape. If the bias tape is made of cotton, set your iron’s heat setting to “Cotton” or a lower temperature.

Step 2

Pin the bias tape to the edge of the tulle. The tape’s folded edge will encase the tulle’s raw edge.

Step 3

Hand-baste the bias tape with a needle and thread to set it in place, if necessary.

Step 4

Place the bias tape and tulle over the sewing machine’s needle plate. Carefully lower the presser foot on the bias tape.

Step 5

Hold the bobbin and needle threads toward the back of the machine to avoid jamming.

Step 6

Adjust the stitch selector for the desired stitch. For example, you may prefer a straight stitch or a narrow zig-zag stitch.

Step 7

Machine stitch close to the edge of the bias tape. Remove every pin as the fabric approaches the needle. Back-stitch a few stitches to secure the thread ends. Trim the threads.

Step 8

Remove the hand-basted thread.

Sewing a Rolled Hem

Step 1

Attach a hemmer foot to the sewing machine.

Step 2

Make a double fold 1/8 inch wide and approximately 3 inches long on the edge of the tulle.

Step 3

Lower the needle into the tulle edge. Lower the hemmer foot.

Step 4

Hold the needle and bobbin threads to the back of the machine.

Step 5

Machine-stitch with a straight stitch for only three to four stitches.

Step 6

Lower the needle onto the tulle. Raise the hemmer foot. Feed the folded section of tulle into the curled slot of the hemmer foot.

Step 7

Lower the hemmer foot.

Step 8

Continue stitching as you carefully feed the tulle evenly into the hemmer foot's slot.

Step 9

Knot and trim the threads to approximately ¼ inch.