Instructions for Tapestry Sewing

Written by mason howard
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Instructions for Tapestry Sewing
Keep edges from fraying by sewing a hem around your tapestry. (stock image of autumn tapestry image by Ruslana Stovner from

For budget conscious decorators and craft enthusiasts alike, tapestries are an affordable, creative and effective way to fill a lot of wall space at once. Whether a tapestry is tie dyed, hand painted or has quilted elements, it is essential to hem the edges to create a finished look and to prevent fraying. Go that extra step and add a large hem at the top for inserting a hanging dowel.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

Things you need

  • Pins
  • Iron
  • Sewing machine
  • Nylon thread
  • Dowel hanging rod
  • Marker
  • Ruler or tape measure

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  1. 1

    Place your tapestry right-side down.

  2. 2

    Start with one of the sides. Fold the edge over twice to create a 1/2-inch hem.

  3. 3

    Pin the hem together.

  4. 4

    Iron the hem to create a straight crease at the edge.

  5. 5

    Sew the hem. Place the fabric right side down in a sewing machine. Run the hem through the sewing machine creating a straight stitch. For light fabrics such as satin or chiffon, use a light nylon thread. For weightier fabrics such as cotton or linen, use a regular nylon thread. Run the stitch right down the centre of the hem. Optionally, some sewing machines have settings and footers to create what is known as a blind stitch. Blind stitches are run along the inside fold of the hem and create a nearly invisible stitch.

  6. 6

    Repeat this step to create hems on the other side and bottom of the tapestry.

  7. 7

    Measure the hem width needed to accommodate a dowel rod hanger. Set the dowel rod along the top edge of the tapestry. Fold the edge around the dowel until it meets the fabric. Make a mark with a marker and use a ruler or tape to measure the distance. Add another 1/2-inch to create some breathing room within the hem.

  8. 8

    Fold the edge over twice using your measurement.

  9. 9

    Run the hem through the sewing machine creating a straight stitch. Run the stitch 1/4-inch in from the inside fold of the hem.

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