For those of you who love to sew as much as I do, I see homemade bias tape in your future. Sure, you can go to the store and buy some plain trim, but why not make your own. It’s easy, fun and the possibilities are endless. That’s why I created this new bias tape series for you. Today, I’ll teach you how to make your own, and then, for the next few weeks, I’ll show you the fun things you can do with all that bias tape I know you’re going to want to make.
The beauty of bias tape is, because it is cut on the bias (45 degree angle) of the fabric, it is super pliable, has stretch and it can curve around all kinds of shapes. It can be used to finish off a raw edge on almost anything — hems, armholes, necklines, ruffles, peplums and seams, just to mention a few. You can create your own in any color, pattern or size you’d like. Making your own saves loads of money. And homemade bias tape makes a great gift for all of your sewing friends. So, what are we waiting for? Let’s turn up some good music and get started!
For the rest of the “how to” click here.
And since I haven’t had a giveaway in awhile, to thank you for supporting my creative endeavors, I’d like to send some bias tape to several of you who take the time to read my tutorial over at eHow, leave comments and pin to your Pinterest boards. I appreciate your support more than you will ever know. The winners will be announced on Saturday, May 17.
In other news:
Congratulations to Sarah Lewtas:
You are the winner of the Felted Jewelry Pouch!
Please send your address to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Also, to Susan from Georgia, you sent me a lovely email the other day asking for advice about dress forms and for some reason, my reply is not going through to your email. I didn’t want you to think I didn’t get your nice email so here is my reply to you:
“Oh my gosh Susan, first of all, CONGRATULATIONS on your retirement! I’m so
excited for you. How many years did you teach and what grade level?
I’m also thrilled for you to be joining in the refashion fun. I know I
can’t get enough of it. So many thrift shops, so little time. 🙂 As far as
the dress form goes, yes, I do use one from Joann’s. But having said that,
it is helpful in many ways, but I still have to try on my creations many
times as I’m working on them. My dress form will go to my measurements but
not my exact shape. There are some that are made to be your shape exactly but
they are out of my price range at this point. If you decide to purchase
one, I noticed Joann’s was having a sale on their forms last week.”
No joke – it’s pouring rain outside and I thought, ugh, I have to go to the store and get some bias tape before I finish my Mother’s Day project. I thought, I’ll just sit down and drink my coffee and read some blogs first. And this was the first blog that showed up in my WordPress feed! The photos of your beautiful homemade bias tape are so much more inspiring than the boring plain colors at the store. Okay… I’m inspired. I’m going to do this! And I’ll also be pinning this for future reference! I can’t wait to see what else you have in store for this bias tape series! Thanks a million for the timely post. 🙂
Oh you just made my day, Lindsay! That’s exactly what I hope for each time I push that publish button. Let me know if you have any questions and I can’t wait to see what you make with your bias tape.
Once again amazing. I actually bought a bias tape maker a while ago and had just not yet looked into the process. Love it! I am going to make fun aprons and your post was just the thing to get me started!
Oh, aprons are a perfect use for bias tape. I’d love to see your creations!
Beth, I have two questions regarding refashioning sweaters. What type of needle do you have most success with? do you choose a ball point needle to accommodate the sweater or a universal needle that is suitable for the woven fabric trim? Also what type of interfacing do you use, especially when converting a sweater into a cardigan? Thank you for your input. Julie
Thank you for your questions. I use a universal needle when I’m converting sweaters into cardigans. I actually don’t use interfacing on my cardigans. Hope this helps.
Have a great weekend!
Thanks for getting back to me. I have a few sweaters that I am trying to muster the courage to cut down the middle. Here goes! Julie
Have fun and let me know if you have any other questions. 🙂
Have fun, Julie and let me know if you have any other questions. 🙂
you’re making us wait a week to see how you used the bias tape!? that’s cruel!
He, he, he……she says with an evil laugh 🙂
in regards to dress forms…make your own of YOU! brown Kraft tape, cut in 2″ strips, wrapped around your tight Tshirt body. It’s you! google it to find all the details.
I might have to try this sometime. Thanks for the tip, Kathy.
You are such a good instructor. Way to go. Perfect pictures, clear directions, precise language. Gifted!!!!!
Valerie Kerr “There is no time like the present” Date: Sat, 3 May 2014 13:41:31 +0000 To: email@example.com
Wow, thanks so much for your kind words, Val. Have a great weekend!
You are so inspiring, and just the push I needed to make some bias tapes this week!!!
Thank you Vicky! Happy bias tape making!!!
I have made bias binding, but not bias tape. Very nice tutorial.
Thank you, Pam!
We had to make quite narrow bias tape out of a satiny stretch fabric for Couture class….that was….not fun. But these happy cotton prints, and the wider tape…..I’m inspired to try bias tape again. Great blog post!
Hi Jenny. I hope you’ll enjoy it as much as I do. 🙂
Oh how lovely! Bog standard “shop bought” bias is a bit boring, but seeing yours has restored me into thinking bias is G-R-E-A-T !! I have some bathroom towels that are a bit past it, so thought I would cut them up for hand towels for both bathroom and kitchen and bind them! I will go through my fabric stash to find some snazzy designs and make my own bias to use on the towels…. thank you for your bias tutorial… best wishes, Jay x
Thank you so much for your nice comment, Jay! Great minds must think alike, because my bathroom towels have had a recent makeover themselves. 😉
I need to go peruse the “happy” fabrics next time I go to the fabric store, and check Amazon for a bias maker/folder. I can’t wait to see what fun ideas you have in store for us 🙂
Have fun in the fabric store, Tami! Bias tape is a good excuse to buy a half yard of all those fun fabrics.
I love sewing to my favorite music. I made a blue and yellow floral print pinafore apron with homemade blue gingham bias – turned out so cute. Thank you for your great ideas and inspiration to make MORE.
You are so welcome, Sharon. I’d love to see your apron, I bet it’s really cute!
They are so pretty and unique! Coincidentally, I made bias tape last night – I love using the gadget. I’ve only made single fold so I cut 1 inch strips for 1/2 inch bias tape – what are the different uses or advantages for single versus double fold? I look forward to seeing the project ideas.
Hi Lisa, We must’ve been reading each others minds last night. 🙂 Double fold is usually used for binding edges and single fold for decorating or trimming on the flat surfaces of the fabric with decorative stitching on top of it.
Thank you for this! I think I’ve only ever made my own bias tape once. I’ll have to try this little gadget. Your tape is so pretty. Sure beats the plain and boring at the stores. Can’t wait to see what you do with it.
Thank you, Vee. Just a word of warning though, once you start making your own bias tape, you might not be able to stop….
Thank you for your tutorial. I actually have a bias tape maker, and I have never used it, because all the instructions for cutting the fabric have confused me. Your instructions were very clear and easy to understand, and now I feel like I can make my own bias tape.
Oh, I’m so glad this was helpful to you, Vicki. Have fun!!!
Just stumbled across this today – AWESOME tutorial, thank you! I was also on your “how to make bias tape” entry and actually went shopping and bought myself a bias tape maker… I’m so excited to get into it! Thank you thank you thank you!
You are so welcome, Katy! Let me know if you have any questions and have fun!!!
Great tutorial, thanks. I’ve pinned it 🙂
Thanks for pinning, Fiona!
Such an amazing tutorial. I can’t thank you enough!
You are so very welcome, Melissa! Have fun.
Thanks for the tutorial! I recently bought a bias tape maker and haven’t tried it, and I’m a visual person when it comes to learning something new so this is a great tutorial for me!
I’m happy this will be helpful to you, Joen! Happy bias tape making!
I haven’t read the other comments, but I wonder why you aren’t making continuous bias tape. It’s so much faster to make. I usually make it weekly. Check out this post: http://www.coletterie.com/tutorials-tips-tricks/continuous-bias-tape-tutorial. Love your bias tape selections. I enjoy your blog and the directions are easily understood.
Thanks for the link to another way to make your own bias tape.
Here is yet another version of continuous bias tape. I haven’t tried it, but it looks fun! I’ve heard it called Pirate Continuous bias tape. I love making continuous bias tape because it’s so much faster and you avoid having to sew endless bias tapes. I did it for years until finding the easy way. Hope you try it out!
Thank you, I will try this, too.
This is the way I do it, too . It’s almost magical when you get to the last of the cutting apart and have yards and yards of bias tape from not-so-big square of fabric and little bit of seaming.
I can’t wait for your part two to get some inspiration! 😉
Hey Beth! Great post. Also, thanks for the memories on your canning post. My mother used to can tomatoes, and applesauce. Great childhood memories!
Thank you, Mary! I love canning, almost as much as I love sewing. 🙂
I just love the material you used. I just bought a new sewing book to make some clothes for myself. I often re-fashion like you. I’m so excited to try making my own bias tape now. I love the patterned more than plain =)
Thank you, Meaghan! There is so much cute fabric out there and this is a fun way to use it. Have fun with this!
This was great. I need to take the time to make some.
I hope you get a chance to make some! It’s so much fun!
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This brought back memories for me. I made little wash clothes with my own bias tape when I had my babies. Used them on my changing table (before disposable baby wipes and I didn’t use disposable diapers)! I think I still may have a couple in my rag drawer.
I remember the cute baby towels you made for Cooper (16 years ago) and Conner. I still have the one you made for Coop. 🙂
What a great idea with bias tape and a old towel. It would also be a great gift idea for students going to college. Think I will make a few.
This would be a great gift for a college student. Thanks for the idea, Tami!!!
It looks so lovely seeing the homemade printed bias all together like that, what a great gift idea for a friend who sews!
I know several people who will be getting some bias tape this Christmas!!
These are so bright and cheery – it’s nice to know how to make them. I’m so glad to read this because recently I was trying to join two pieces of pre-made bias tape and just couldn’t figure out the angle to sew them … now I know 🙂
I’m so glad this was helpful to you, Jo!
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I was so excited by your tutorial I went out and bought a couple of different size biased tape makers. I wanted a two inch one so I could do a one inch double biased tape border on cut off jeans for my daughters. I had to wait a few days for it to come in the mail, but it was worth it. Thanks to you I have completed over 7 yards of beautiful turquoise floral biased tape for my girls shorts. Thank you so much. After the jean shorts I am going to make more biased tape.
Sounds like you have the bias tape bug now, too! Enjoy and thanks for your comment, Jeanne!
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I really like the ideas on using bias tape. Where did you get your all metal bias tape makers? I’ve only seen the ones with plastic, but would like all metal ones.
Hi Laura, I think I bought mine through JoAnns.