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Different Types Of Basic Seams Used In Sewing Techniques

Updated on September 14, 2016

Types Of Basic Seams Used In Sewing

There are three basic seams that are used in sewing techniques. To be able to sew or join fabrics together so that you can create clothes to wear, you will have to know simple sewing basics which involves a few standard stitches and seams.

Once you know how to use seams in sewing technique, you will be able to easily make or alter any sewing project.

As a beginner, if you want to make clothes for yourself, family, friends or if you will be interested in making curtains and upholstery, it is advisable to attend a sewing class that you can learn basic sewing techniques that include how to use basic seams in making garment.

The 3 basic types of seams are flat seam, flat fell seam and french seam. Other types of seams are curved seams, seams used in sewing corners and neatening raw edges seam.

Flat Seam

This is a basic and simple seam used to join widths of fabrics. This flat seam technique can be used to sew or make most sewing projects.

Flat Seam Sewing Technique

  • All you have to do is to place two pieces of fabric that you want to join right sides together
  • Pin and tack inside seam line
  • Sew about 1.5cm (5/8in) away from the raw edges
  • To secure threads, sew a few stitches at each end
  • Remove tacking
  • To flatten the seam edges, open and press

French Seam Photo Tutorial


French Seam Sewing technique Video

French Seam

French seam sewing technique is used to join straight edges. It is used to strengthen light fabrics as it is a self-neatening seam.

This type of seam on fabrics is very hard to wear. This is why it is often used to make pillowcases, duvet covers, laundry bags and others.

French Seam Technique

  • Place the pieces of fabrics with wrong sides together and make sure the edges are aligned.
  • Tack a seam about 6mm (1/4in) from the edge
  • Machine stitch between the tacking and the edge halfway
  • Press the seam open and trim
  • With right sides together, fold the fabric and sew a second seam about 1cm away from the edge, that is, the first seam. This will enclose the raw edges.
  • Press flat and turn the fabric to the right side


Flat Fell Seam

The flat fell seam technique is used in sportswear and jeans as it is a strong seam.

Flat Fell Seam Sewing Technique

  • With the wrong side s of the fabrics together, make a flat seam
  • From the stitching, trim one seam edge to 3mm
  • Use the seam edge that you didn't trim to cover the trimmed edge
  • Tack the folded edge to the fabric along the turned in edge
  • Press the seam flat after machine stitching along the tacked raw edge


Curved Seams

When you sew a curved seam, make sure to snip on outward facing curves into the seam allowance. Also on outward facing curves, snip notches into the seam allowance. Curved seam sewing technique makes the seam allowance to lie flat when you press it open.

Which of the seams have you used to sew?

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    • bizwin profile image

      Christabel Evans 5 years ago from England, UK

      Good you already know about french seams. Learning to apply some seams in sewing technique can stand you out as an excellent dressmaker or fashion designer. Thanks for your visit tirelesstraveler.

    • tirelesstraveler profile image

      Judy Specht 5 years ago from California

      Grandma taught me French seams first. I was amazed in economics class by flat seams. When I got to college I had to learn them all. Everyone was having difficulty with French seams, and I thanked grandma for making me work hard in the beginning. Nice hub.