This week I will show you how to sew bias tape. Last tutorial, we learned about sewing double-fold bias tape. The techniques used for single and double fold are very similar. Single fold bias is often used around clothing necklines and armholes to provide a clean and simple edge finish. You can stitch it inside the garment if you don't wish to see it or on the outside for a decorative contrast effect.
How to Sew Bias Tape Tutorial (Bias Binding)
Necklines, armholes and curves often use single fold bias tape to give a clean edge finish without the use of facing. The most commonly used width is ½ inch (12mm) single fold bias, as it is easy to handle and narrow enough to curve easily without wrinkling.
You can use store-bought single-fold bias tape or make your own. The advantage of making your own is that you have an endless choice of patterned fabrics you can use. Read how to make bias tape. You can make it with or without a bias tape maker so don't worry if you don't have any fancy gadgets.
DID YOU KNOW? Bias tape can also be called bias binding.
Types of Bias Tape
Before you start sewing bias tape, it is important to know the types of bias tape and which is best for your sewing project. The linked article will show you the difference between single fold and double fold and some other common types.
- Single fold bias tape has the raw edges pressed so they meet in the middle. It is normally used for necklines and armholes and the bias will only show on one side of the fabric when sewn.
- Double fold bias tape has the raw edges pressed like single fold bias tape but then it is pressed a second time so the edges are fully encased. It is used on necklines, armholes, and many sewing projects, including quilting. The edges of the bias tape will show on both sides of the item.
How to Sew Bias Tape Supplies Needed
- Tape. ½ inch single fold bias tape
- Sewing basics. Sewing machine, ruler, scissors or rotary cutter, iron, thread
How to Sew Bias Tape, Video Instructions
Watch this quick Youtube video I made to show you the process of how to sew bias tape.
How to Sew Bias Tape, Instructions
This tutorial will show you how to use bias tape in the common single fold bias tape.
Step 1: Make Bias Tape Strips
Read more about how to make bias tape if you haven't made bias strips before.
- Cut strips of your fabric on the diagonal bias in your required width. Common widths include 1-inch strips for ½-inch single-fold bias.
- Join the strips together with with a ¼" seam allowance and the right sides together at a 45-degree angle.
- Trim and press open to form a long strip.
- Press into single-fold bias tape using a bias tape maker.
ANOTHER WAY TO MAKE STRIPS: Continuous bias tape is an amazing way to cut fabric and turn it into a very, very long piece of bias trim with less joining.
Step 2: Press in a Curve
How to keep bias tape from puckering? Because single fold bias is commonly used around highly curved areas, you should start by pressing it in a curve. This helps it sit better with fewer wrinkles in your finished product. Just put your iron on steam and gently manipulate the bias as shown below.
Step 2: Pin to Edge
Start by opening up one side of the single fold tape and pinning it with the wrong side up around the raw edge of the fabric.
- DECORATIVE BIAS ON THE OUTSIDE OF A ARMHOLE OR NECKLINE - If you wish for the bias to show on the outside of the garment like the Bella Dress (red dress), then pin on the inside.
- INVISIBLE BIAS FOR HEMS, ARMHOLES AND NECKLINES - If you wish the bias to end up on the inside for an invisible finish (like my denim sample), then pin the bias to the outside.
Step 3: How to Sew Bias Tape Ends
If you need to overlap the bias for a circular opening like a neck or armhole, then start somewhere like the shoulder seam or back where it won't be noticed. Fold the end of the bias over by ½ inch (12mm).
When you get back to where you started, simply overlap the ends by ½ inch (12mm). Just leave the end flat - there is no need to fold the top piece.
Step 4: Stitch Along Fold
Use your sewing machine on a straight stitch along the bias and in the crease closest to the edge. If you are using ½ inch (12mm) single fold bias hen this will be ¼ inch (6mm) from the raw edge.
Step 5: Fold Down
Now press the bias to the other side and press and pin it down.
See in the picture below how the seam is now on the edge. The bottom folded edges should be tucked under and just cover the stitching line. Sewing clips can help hold the edge of the bias tape in place if pins make marks.
Step 6: Stitch Edge
Edge stitch the bias in place close to the bottom edge. Give your finished bias a really good press. You will be surprised how much flatter it sits.
How to Sew Bias Tape on the Ends
If you have an edge to finish with single fold bias tape, simply fold the ends of the bias tape over when you stitch it in the first step.
Press the bias to the other side with the edge tucked in.
How to Sew Bias Tape - More Methods
Here are more tutorials on binding tape sewing methods:
1. Sewing Bias Tape - Double Fold
Twice as much fun, double the style, and really professional. The double fold tape is just as easy to use and gives an added finish to any sewing project. Learn how to sew double fold bias tape.
2. Sewing Bias Tape Corners
Bias tape corners are a useful trim for all kinds of sewing projects. Just by knowing the basics, you can create a multitude of beautiful corners for all kinds of items. It’s really ’sew’ simple and very effective.
3. Sewing Bias Tape V-Neck Shirts
Using bias tape to finish a v-neck shirt is a common technique that will save you from using a facing. It is similar to sewing double-fold bias tape with a couple of extra tips.
4. Making Piping with Bias Tape
Did you know that you can use bias tape to make piping? Once you have made piping, it is time to sew it into a seam. This tutorial will show you how to sew piping along straight edges, curves, and corners, as well as how to start and finish the piping ends.
How to Sew Bias Tape - In Conclusion
Here is a photo of how to sew bias tape where it is used on the inside of the neckline and armholes. The process is identical, except the bias was attached to the outside in the first step and then flipped to the inside. You can see this clearly in the video on how to sew bias tape.
- Sewing Basics
- Bias Tape
- Start by opening up one side of the single fold tape and pinning it with the wrong side up around the raw edge of the fabric.
- Use your sewing machine on a straight stitch along the bias and in the crease closest to the edge. If you are using ½ inch (12mm) single fold bias hen this will be ¼ inch (6mm) from the raw edge.
- Now press the bias to the other side and press and pin it down.
- Edge stitch the bias in place close to the bottom edge.
More Articles on Bias Tape
- How to Make Bias Tape with a Bias Maker
- How to Make Bias Tape with no Special Tools
- How to Sew Single Fold Bias Tape
- Sewing Double Fold Bias Tape
- How to Make Continuous Bias Tape
- How to sew Mitred Square Corners with Bias Tape
- Types of Bias Tape
- Bias Bound Seam
- Hong Kong Finish
- Sewing Bias Tape
- How to Sew a V Neck with Bias Tape
- Types of Bias Tape