Cate, the hem was SO easy. I'd never done anything like it before so I was nervous too, but all it is is a yo, K2tog row, followed by a couple more inches of straight stockinette which is then bound off. You fold the hem right at the eyelet row, then with your yarn tail (I left a LONG tail and it wasn't long enough) in a tapestry needle, you start inserting it through the first bound off stitch, then through a purl bump on the back of your work, then through the second bound off stitch and the next purl bump on the same row, etc. It took a while and was a bit tedious but it came out great.
And no, I'm not going to do the leaves at the bottom of the ties. I made one leaf and it was much bigger than I thought it would be plus I just didn't like how it looked. So I'm just doing plain i-cord and I may buy some kind of beads or something to sew to the bottoms of the ties.