Tutorial: Edwardian Lace Insertion (With ‘Rolled’ Hem)

Tutorial: Edwardian Lace Insertion (With 'Rolled' Hem)

In this tutorial I’ll show you how lace insertion was done in the Edwardian era.


You’ll need:

  • lace (I’ve used cotton Valenciennes lace)
  • fabric (I’ve used muslin)
  • matching sewing thread
  • sewing machine
  • needle and scissor


I haven’t starched the lace or fabric, but I’ve washed and ironed both so that it won’t distort later.

sew lace insertion straight stitch machine

Sew the lace on both edges with a straight stitch. I’ve sewn the lace both times in the same direction, so that the lace doesn’t distort.

You could also mark lines on the fabric, or pin or baste the lace to the fabric before sewing if you want to.

If you use delicate handmade lace, it ‘should be sewed in place by hand with fine running stitches’ (School Sewing Based On Home Problems, 1916).

edwardian lace insertion tutorial

On the wrong side of the fabric, carefully trim the raw edges to about 1/8 – 1/4 inch / 3 – 6 mm.

trim raw edge edwardian lace insertion tutorial
Both edges trimmed and ready for sewing

rolled hem edwardian lace insertion tutorial

Sew overcasting stitches close to your stitching line and draw them tight. ‘The edge has the appearance of being rolled.’ (Clothing For Women: Selection, Design, Construction, 1916)

lace ruffle edwardian lace insertion tutorial

On the right side, tiny slanting stitches will show which however are hardly noticeable.

edwardian lace insertion tutorial overcast hem
One side finished with ‘rolled’ hem
front view edwardian lace insertion tutorial
Front view of lace insertion

I think this Edwardian lace insertion method is pretty and practical: it’s secure, and the ‘rolled’ hem is hardly noticeable.

close-up edwardian lace insertion tutorial
Close-up of lace insertion

I recommend doing the ‘rolled’ hem when you’re relaxed: 😉 while viewing a nice movie in the evening, or sitting outside on a sunny afternoon. I found sewing the hem stressful when I had little time, and relaxing while sitting outside in summer.

edwardian lace insertion lace ruffle

You could also attach a lace ruffle close to the edge of your lace insertion with running stitches.

Tutorial: Edwardian Lace Insertion (With 'Rolled' Hem)

It’s the sleeve for my Edwardian lingerie dress which I’m sewing at the moment.

Here you’ll find more of my lace tutorials.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *