Cloth - Openings and Shell Hem


Openings are features in garments. They help us to put in and take off our clothes. There are different kinds of openings. They can be used to decorate the garment.

Points to consider when making openings:
1. The opening should be suitable for the position on the garment.

2. It should be suitable for the texture of the fabric for example continuous wrap opening for light materials.

3. It should be long enough to serve its purpose. A very short opening will result in strain and tear.

4. It should be as neat and invisible as possible.

5. It should be placed in a position where it will be easy to fasten.

6. The two sides of the opening should be of equal lengths.

7. The opening should lie flat when fastened.

8. The seams of the opening should be strong, especially at its base to avoid tear.

There are different types of openings in clothe fabrication, and there are different ways of finishing openings. These ways give the openings their names. These include continuous, bound and slit openings.

For Transparent fabrics: hems are made with two folds of the same depth. This is to hide raw edged


Shell Hem
This type is hem gives a decorative finish. It can be used for collars, baby's clothes, night dresses.

To make:
- mark the hem line.
- make the first and second foldings.
- tack the hem.
- sew them down about 1,3 cm with running stitches.
- take two stitches over the edge. Pull thread tight.
- repeat the two stitches at evenly spaced intervals, until hem is completed.

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