HomeMade Bias Tape

biasheader
Bias tape is simply folded fabric strips cut on the “bias”, which means diagonally to the grain of the fabric. This allows the fabric strips to bend and stretch effortlessly around curved seams and edges, making it a great way to finish garments or other sewing projects. It’s inexpensive to buy, however the color and fabric choices can be pretty limited.
Making your own bias tape for your sewing projects not only means you know it will match perfectly, but it also helps use up your leftover fabric which means it’s practically free. It is also much easier than you might think, and you don’t need one of those fancy electric machines to do it. Are you ready to learn how? Here’s what you’re going to need:

Fabric
Ruler
Straightedge
Scissors or rotary cutter
Iron
Sewing Machine
seam ripper or very long pin
tape folder

First, iron your fabric and then lay it out on a large flat surface. Line the selvage edge up with the edge of your table or cutting mat.

bias1

If your mat has bias markings on it, and you can see thru your fabric, all you need to do is cut along those diagonal lines, making strips about an inch and a half wide. (for wider tape, cut strips about 2.5 inches)
bias2

If you aren’t using a mat or you have opaque fabric, take the cut side and bring it across to the selvage side, making a triangle. Iron the fold, then open the fabric back flat. This fold mark will serve as your bias line, and you will cut your strips parallel with it.

Cut your strips. (a quilter’s square and rotary cutter make quick work of this part!)
bias3

Line up the ends of your strips, with right sides together, so they form a right angle. Stitch a very narrow seam along the outside edge.

bias4
bias5

Straighten the fabric and iron down the seam. Make sure you iron all your seams in the same direction as you go down the length of your tape. This will be important later.
bias6

Feed one end of your tape into the backside of the tape folder, and use a seam ripper or long pin to feed the fabric thru the slot until it begins to come out the other end. Make sure all your ironed seams are facing away from the end you start through the folder so they don’t get caught up in it.
bias7
bias8

As the fabric starts to pop out the front of the folder, have your iron ready. Use the hottest setting you can with steam, to make sure that your new folds stay put.
bias9

voila! bias tape in any fabric you need, and fewer fabric scraps for the bin.
bias10

Now just fold it around the edges of your project and stitch. Perfect, finished edges are yours in no time.
bias11

this post was originally written for the EcoEtsy team blog. you can check it out as well as the rest of their 14 days of crafting series right here

Advertisements

How do I Recycle??

So a friend just posted a link to a LA times feature where they pick an object each week and tell you where and how to recycle it. I think that’s pretty amazing, since it can be hard to figure out how to recycle some stuff, and there are a lot of things people don’t realize you CAN recycle (as we found out during the Earth Day festival…)

I have just been inspired to create a new blog feature! I guess it will have to focus on City of Atlanta and maybe Fulton and Dekalb counties if I can get enough info. It would also be kind of fun to post things made from those objects that can be re-used in addition to recycled.

yay inspiration! I’ll start on Wednesday…

Still snowed in.

Well, actually we’re iced in. Today I’ll be digging out my skates and going to find an unmolested parking lot to bust my arse skate in. Whee!

Luckily our power hasn’t gone out, which means a lot of internet time since there isn’t much else to do but clean. (Oh how I wish I’d made a sewing-supplies run before this storm hit!) In all that I ran across this genius idea for re-using your tuna cans on Makezine. I don’t much eat canned tuna, but oh boy do I go thru a lot of steel cat food cans, so I LOVE this. I expect squee!s from fellow bento lunch lovers:

http://www.instructables.com/id/Tiffin-Box-from-Tuna-Cans/

And something a little happier!

Another awesome holiday tutorial, this time from The Crafty Crow

via the Crafty Crow

She says: They are darling for ornaments but they’d make a wonderful garland as well. Put one on your wrist to add a little jingle to your step or tie one on a package to make it extra special.

I also think you could adapt these to cover fairy lights… Plus, they’re made totally from recycled materials! Check out the tutorial here.