Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Tuesday's Tips- Make your own bias tape

It's been a while since I did a Tuesday's Tip.

So, today I've got something that will knock your socks off!
(if you've never seen it before)
A big thank you goes out to Barbara Fraser for teaching me this cool trick.

I bought myself one of these for Christmas and I just LOVE it!
I have already used it so many times.

Bias tape just jazzes up an outfit so beautifully.

It's so great for so many things! I love how it adds that extra POP!

It also looks great as a binding on a blanket, burp rags, or bibs.

With just a fat quarter you can make almost 5 yards of bias tape in your choice of fabrics! wooo hooo!

Okay- so 1st gather your materials:
1. fabric- cut into a fat quarter or 18X18 inches
2. pencil or marking tool
3. ruler
4. bias tape maker (this kind or this kind)
I've used both, but if you're going to make bias tape a lot- you'll love the machine
5. iron

Okay. Let's get started.
Lay out your fabric- make sure it's been pressed.

Cut a line directly bias thru the entire piece of fabric. Now you have piece A and B.

Move piece B over so that the fabric edges on grain are together.
so the selvage edge and the other side of the half... does that make sense?

Then flip that piece over and put right sides together.

Take it to the machine and stitch in a 1/4 seam all the way down.
I always use my quarter inch foot for this.

Go iron the seam and press the seam allowances open. This is very important- it won't glide thru the bias tape maker if your seams are wonky.

Now lay your fabric, right side down and mark two inches (or however wide) from the bias edge. VERY important!!! If you mark from the straight grain edge- you will end up with binding- not bias.

Continue marking two inches (on the bias) all the way down your fabric.

When you get done, you will probably have a little uneven edge. Cut that off.

Now you are going to fashion your fabric into a 'tube' using the pencil lines as guides for lining it up.

Make sure you leave a tail at the beginning and end of your 'tube'.
I use quotations because it's a very wonky tube. You'll see when you make one.

Once you have all the lines lined up and pinned- go to your machine and stitch that in a 1/4 seam taking out the pins as you stitch.

Press your seams again opening out the seam allowance.

This is difficult to do without a cool sleeve press like this, but it can be done. Just work slowly and in sections until it's all ironed open.

Now, starting at one of your tails, cut thru the entire tube at your pencil markings.

Then you'll have a big strip of bias like this.

Use your bias tape maker of choice to finish making the tape.
Here's my preferred method.

Roll the bias strip onto the roller and using a pin- guide the fabric thru the foot.

Remove the cover to the iron part and pull the bias all the way thru.

Replace the cover and press go.
Make sure you pull slightly on the strips coming out- to help guide the parts that are seamed.

Press in half making one side a scant shorter than the other.

And there you have it- about 5 yards of beautiful bias tape!

Then go make a project!

I've used knits and satins and gingham and cottons all with AWESOME results on this machine! Have I convinced you to buy one yet???


Mandy @ Sugar Bee Craft Edition said...

convinced me!

Mindy Rhae said...

DANGIT! I just used my Joann's coupon on SOLVY. >=O( Maybe next month.


Mary said...

I bought one of these in November and I am so in love with it! I make a lot of bias tape and it was well worth the money spent. Great tutorial, btw!

BConky said...

Good job Cole.

Mama Lusco said...

Thanks for the tute. This is way easier than my old way! I had no idea you could get 5 yards bias tape from a FQ! I'm jealous of your machine :)

Holly said...

Nicely done tutorial! The pictures are more clear than on some that I've seen on this process. Thank you for taking your time to show us!

I had no idea you could get 5 yards from a FQ either! Wow!

Holly said...

Question - do you prefer a 2" strip for the kids clothing you do?

Stacia said...

This is awesome. I need one of those machines. I love bias tape, but I've just been using store bought...I love the idea of making it!

Anonymous said...

Thanks! That was much, much easier to understand than the tutorial I have that came with a pattern.

Dana said...

BEST BIAS Tutorial EVAH!!!!!!! THANK YOU!!!!!!

Shannon H said...

Thank you for the pictures! This one is much clearer and better than all the others I've seen!

Anonymous said...

I did it! Thank you so much. What a fun way to use up some older scraps of fabric. My 12 year old just started making mug rugs. We are going to have fun mixing and matching with cool bias tape now. thanks so much! Retta

Tammy said...

That machine looks amazing! What do you think of the other size tips for for it? Different weights of fabric, etc! Thanks for your tutorial, I always make huge amounts of it so I can cut it out with a rotary, but i like the pencil method for smaller amounts!

Tammy said...

PS. The machine is $56 at Amazon, if you have the free shipping this is an awesome deal, and I am getting convinced to do it!

slmpickns said...

Thanks so much! I am making a wedding dress (full skirt, with train) from a silky brocade with metallic threads that loves to ravel and is a little itchy on the back. So I needed like 30 yards of seam tape to finish all the long skirt seams. I couldn't find a soft lightweight tape in plain old white- and I needed 10 packs! So you just saved me like 40+$! I cut a 36" square from a 3$ piece of lining fabric and since i don't have a nice template, I used a yard stick to mark off some fat 1" lines. I only marked about 3 rows... then stitched it up and eyeballed when i cut. What a great technique. I'll never pay for bias binding again!

Lizanne said...

OK you convinced me, I just bought one!

Bolo heads said...

This is like the tenth time I have looked up this tutorial. Thanks again. I have Christmas dresses to make so I better go.

IngridElizabeth said...

You made it look so easy. Beautiful! I must get one of these machines.

BB said...

You convinced me on getting the bias maker machine. Only problem is I cannot find it for the price you got it at I’m seeing the same machine online for $200. and up, Walmart is out of stock and they don’t tell you if they are getting it in again. Oh well have to do it the old fashion way.