Last Updated on June 26, 2023
A tailor’s ham typically consists of two different fabrics: one side made of cotton for higher heat and rigid fabrics, and the other side made of wool for delicate fabrics that require lower heat. The inside is traditionally filled with sawdust, but you can also use fabric scraps for stuffing.
This is an essential tool for pressing curved seams while sewing clothes or even for ironing already-finished garments. It helps achieve professional results by providing a smooth, firm surface for shaping and molding fabric.
What is a tailor’s ham in sewing?
In sewing, a tailor’s ham is a stuffed pillow-like item that shapes and presses curved parts of clothes such as darts, sleeves, cuffs, collars, and waistlines. It helps achieve a better fit by molding the fabric to body contours during pressing.
What is a tailor’s ham made of?
A tailor’s ham is typically made of two different fabrics: cotton and wool. The cotton side is suitable for higher heat and more rigid materials, while the wool side is used for delicate fabrics that require lower heat, such as silk.
The inside of the tailors ham can be filled with different materials like sawdust, wood shavings, or wool fibers. It is used for pressing curved seams while sewing clothes or ironing finished garments.
What is a tailor’s ham filled with?
A tailor’s ham is typically filled with sawdust or wood shavings. Other alternatives include stuffing wool fibers or using fabric scraps. The purpose of the filling is to absorb moisture and provide a smooth and firm surface for pressing curved seams and garments.
How to Make a Tailor’s Ham –All Steps with Guide
Here in this guide, we’ll walk you through making your tailor’s ham.
Step 1: Create a Pattern
You can find various shapes and sizes for tailor’s hams, but we’ll focus on a slightly more complex shape that offers more curves for ironing. You can create your own pattern pieces or find downloadable patterns online. The shape is usually similar to an egg or teardrop.
Step 2: Cut and Sew the Fabric
Fold the fabric in half, right sides facing, and lay the pattern piece on top. Cut a half-inch seam allowance around the pattern. This should be done for both the top and bottom pattern pieces. Sew around the outside, leaving a little gap for stuffing.
Step 3: Shape the Ham
Fold the corners of the top pattern piece so that the two sides align. Sew a diagonal seam from one corner to the other, about three-quarters of an inch in from the edge. Repeat this for the remaining corners. This will create a bowl shape.
Step 4: Attach the Top and Bottom
Fold the top pattern piece in half to find the center and sew a seam half an inch in from the edge. Repeat this step for the bottom pattern piece. Press the darts flat for a smoother shape.
Step 5: Sew the Ham Together
Align the creases of the top and bottom pattern pieces with the right sides facing each other. Pin them together, leaving a small opening for stuffing. Sew along the edges, leaving the opening unsewn.
Step 6: Stuff the Ham
To stuff the ham:
- Use sawdust or finely chopped fabric scraps.
- Fill the ham, massaging the stuffing into the corners and ensuring it is evenly distributed.
- Keep filling until you can’t add anymore without overstressing the fabric.
Step 7: Close the Opening
Once the ham is fully stuffed, sew the opening closed. Use a strong stitch to secure the fabric and stuffing.
Step 8: Finishing Touches
Press the seams of the ham to make them lie flat. Trim any excess fabric if needed. Your tailor’s ham is now ready to use!
With your homemade tailor’s ham, you can lay your garment on top of it and press seams and surfaces, ensuring a professional finish. The tailors ham is particularly useful for pressing curved areas and achieving the desired shape in your garments.
FAQs – People also ask
To further help, here are some answers to questions you may have about Tailoring Ham.
What is the best material for tailoring ham?
The best material for a tailor’s ham is 100% wool fabric on both sides. It provides excellent pressing results. However, you can also use a combination of wool and cotton or use 100% cotton if preferred.
Which shape tailors ham is the best?
For plus-size fashion, it is recommended to use a pear or body-shaped tailor’s ham on a foot. Therefore, the best shape for a tailors ham in this context would be either pear-shaped or body-shaped.
What is the difference between a tailor’s ham and a seam roll?
The main difference between a tailor’s ham and a seam roll is their size and shape. A tailors ham is larger and typically has a ham-shaped pattern, while a seam roll is smaller and has a narrow, oblong shape.
The seam roll is specifically designed for pressing smaller curves and is especially useful for narrow tubes like ankle and sleeve cuffs.
Tailor’s ham alternative – What can you use instead of a tailor’s ham?
Instead of a tailor’s ham, you can use a towel. Roll or mold the towel into the desired shape to press the shaped parts of the garments.
What size is a tailor’s ham?
A tailor’s ham typically measures approximately 6 inches at the widest and 9 inches tall. The size of a tailors ham can vary. It can come in various shapes and sizes, but the most common is a ham-shaped pattern.
Try to experiment with various fabrics and stuffing alternatives to see what works best for your creations. Now that you know how to make a tailor’s ham, you can enjoy the benefits of this indispensable tool in your sewing and garment-making endeavors.
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