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The Magic of Double-sided Fusible Tape

I have been using double-sided fusible tape in my sewing for years. It is such an essential tool for me that I was aghast—yes, aghast—recently when I found out a sewing friend did not know what I was talking about. If you have not added this notion to your sewing arsenal, go out right now and get some.

Preferred double-sided fusible tape

There are different versions, but I have had good luck with Lite Steam-A-Seam 2 from the Warm Company. Steam-A-Seam 2 comes in a couple of widths and strengths that can be used for different applications and different fabrics. I like it because it holds well and can be sewn through without gumming up the machine’s needle or bobbin case. It’s wise to give it a test run to make sure you like it.

Lite Steam-A-Seam 2 package

I cannot imagine hemming a wool jersey garment without Lite Steam-A-Seam 2. It can be used on almost any fabric—always test first, of course—but I find it particularly helpful on knits. The fusible tape is easy to use, and it creates a professional result.

Editor’s note: Other double-sided fusible web tapes include: Fusi-Web, Lite EZ-Steam II Tape by PellonHeatNBond by Therm O Web, and Design Plus by L.J. Designs.

How it works

Let me share my latest wool jersey T-shirt as an example of how I use the double-sided fusible tape.

The tape comes on a roll with one side fixed to a strip of parchment-like paper. With finger-pressing, it sticks to the fabric temporarily and pressing the paper side fuses it in place permanently. Once the paper cools you can peel it off  and the tape remains stuck to the fabric. Now the side that was stuck to the paper is exposed and tacky. Simply stick it to…

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  1. user-783812 | | #1

    How does this work with the neckline? it looks like you turned it under about an inch. it would seem to me that it would pucker as the length of the edge is less than what it is an inch below. do you answer these comments?

    1. jclegg | | #2

      Hello, user-783812. Here's Becky's response: "You are exactly right about the difference between the circumference of the cut edge and the turned edge. I usually turn about 3/4 of an inch. With knits, which is what the example is, the fabric has enough stretch to allow the hem to lie flat when it is sewn and pressed. It is trickier with woven fabrics. I can usually get a nice hem with lighter weight wovens because about half of the neckline is on the bias. For heavier or more stable fabrics, I will use a narrow bias strip as a facing. It adds a bit of fun to use a contrasting fabric for your bias strip. Hope this helps."

  2. user-783812 | | #3

    Thank you so much. it is good to know how you do it.

  3. scccnana | | #4

    It sounds like this is a permanent tape. Is there a water-soluble equivalent? Thank you.

    1. dsantil71 | | #5

      There is Dritz Wash Away Wonder Tape. It also doesn't need to be ironed on. Just press on then sew. Easy peasy.

  4. dsantil71 | | #6

    I haven't tried that brand. I have tried other brands of fusible tapes with bad results. I have found much success with DRITZ WASH AWAY WONDER TAPE. I love it. Plus it doesn't need to be ironed on. Only finger press on, then sew! Plus I love that it washes away so it doesn't change the feel or drape of the fabric. I use it for applying zippers, hard to reach areas , slippery and minky fabrics.

  5. scccnana | | #7

    Thanks for your replies. I'm enjoying joining the Threads community. Happy sewing!

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