WHAT IS IT?
A seam roll is a stuffed tool with a long narrow shape and rounded ends used for pressing (page link). The most useful seam rolls are made with wool cloth on one side and cotton on the other. Seam rolls are stuffed with sawdust or commercial stuffing to keep their shape. Pair with a tailor’s ham (page link) to cover most of your pressing needs. You can buy seam rolls, or you can make your own.
HOW TO PRESS WITH A SEAM ROLL
Arrange your seam over the seam roll, with the seam line centered down the middle of the roll. Press. Slide the seam roll inside the tube, down the seam line. Continue pressing until you’ve pressed the entire length of the seam. Use the cotton side for high heat and the wool side for low heat.
WHEN DO YOU USE IT?
A seam roll is excellent for pressing hard-to-reach long seams on narrow areas, such as sleeves. You can also press seams with a seam roll when you want to avoid making an impression of the seam allowances on the right side of the garment.
Do you need a seam roll right away when you’re learning to sew? You can get away without a seam roll until you run into one of the circumstances noted above.
Tips + Notes
- Save extra stuffing to restuff the seam roll, in case it becomes deflated over time.
- Make a hanging loop by sewing ribbon in the seam allowance at one end before you stuff it.
- Stuff with cedar shavings found at pet supply shops instead of sawdust. You can also stuff it with wool fabric scraps or old nylon stockings.
- Instead of making a seam roll, you can roll a narrow hand towel tightly and use it as a pressing tool.
HOW TO MAKE YOUR OWN SEAM ROLL
Cut out a rectangle approximately 14″ × 5″ (35.6cm × 12.7cm) from both wool and prewashed cotton fabric (such as muslin). Layer the two fabrics and round off the corners.
Sew around the edges with a ½” (1.3cm) seam allowance. Leave a 5″ (12.7cm) opening for stuffing on one of the long sides.
Turn the seam roll right side out. Stuff the seam roll tightly with sawdust. It needs to be quite hard to hold its shape.
Turn under the seam allowance on one side of the opening, lap over the other edge and sew the opening shut.
Source : The Sewtionary An A to Z Guide to 101 Sewing Techniques + Definitions
About the Author : Tasia ST. Germaine