Piece a Binding then Machine Applique it in Place
This technique was a problem solver for me when I was ready to finish the front and neck edges of a pieced and quilted jacket and I realized I didn't have enough fabric to cut a bias binding. I didn't want to face the jacket or introduce a new fabric to the piece either. However, I had enough scraps of the jacket fabrics to piece together a binding – if I didn't obsess about cutting them on grain. And, I reasoned, appliquéing the binding in place would be a continuation of the collage piecing I had used in the jacket. In a later project, I used the same process and a collection of compatible fabrics to make the edge the focal point on a solid-color vest.
My technique for this binding is not definitive and it may vary depending on the fabrics I'm using and the shape of the garment edge. Because it's somewhat of an artistic endeavor, I do a lot of building as I go, pinning in place first then stepping back to check the progress, editing along the way by adding or deleting pieces, and always trusting in my fabric choices. I want the final finish to be pleasing to the eye, but my dressmaking instincts require that it be flat, smooth, and supple. So I follow the same steps I would use in attaching a basic bias binding – carefully cutting the edges with a sharp scissor or rotary cutter, sewing straight using a seam guide, and pressing as I go.
The Process in a Nutshell
Seam the scraps together, cut the edge straight along one side, sew this strip to the wrong side of the jacket, and wrap it over the edge to the right side of the garment – just like sewing on a bias binding. But instead of turning under the remaining long edge and stitching it in place by hand or with a straight machine stitch, cut the edge to a desired shape with scissors, sometimes following the motifs in the fabric. Pin the cut edge in place and sew it to the garment using a machine satin stitch.
|Fabrics with a clear motif create an embroidered effect.|