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Binding tape

tzipi | Posted in General Sewing Info on

Sandra Betzina recommends  ( I think) sewing a strip of binding tape on upper edges of sections of skirts before sewing in order to prevent the fabric from stretching out. But doesn’t this add  unwanted bulk- in addition to the facing and at the side seams?


  1. FitnessNut | | #1

    Of course it would....if you used bias tape, which is what I'm interpreting your question as. I learned to use a very thin cotton stay tape to do this. Its fairly loosely woven and adds almost no bulk. You can also use selvedges of thin fabric, such as chiffon or organza to do the same thing. This is an invaluable technique to stabilize any bias edge - a neckline, top edge of a strapless garment, vest neckline edges.

    1. mem | | #2

      very true. It makes the world of difference on the crutch seam of pants and down the front facing seam of a jacket.Iuse a woven twill tape and keep selvages of light fabrics for ths purpose.

    2. clsosa | | #3

      In your response you mention that you use a thin cotton stay tape.  I am looking for a source for this tape.  Do you have one?  I was searching tailor supplies and found 1/4" twill tape, but I'm really looking for the thinner (1/8") cotton tape to use on sleeve caps and necklines.  Can you help me?

      1. FitnessNut | | #4

        I'm not sure.....I bought mine at a store in the Toronto fashion district. I was having trouble finding it locally, so I picked up 100 metres when on holiday. I did see it afterwards, however, in a local fabric store, so it is available that way. Unfortunately, good notions departments are getting as hard to find as good fabric stores. :-(

      2. mem | | #5

        just use selvage its what allthe couturiers use .

        1. clsosa | | #6

          Thanks for the suggestion.  I primarily do alterations, and try to duplicate the original designer techniques, so I don't have access to selvage.  I know this is a somewhat outdated product, but I prefer the way it handles to the current fusible tapes and the 1/8" width is the key (no bulk).  Someday I'll find it and buy several rolls.

          1. solosmocker | | #7

            I save all my lightweight selvedges for just this purpose and cut them accordingly.

        2. User avater
          susannah_sews | | #8

          I agree with the tip about using selvedges.  I was making a skirt one evening and the pattern called for tape.  I had none, and as I was making the skirt out of an older (full) skirt, I didn't have selvedges of that fabric, but I had a bolt of calico (I think US quilters call this muslin?) and cut a narrow strip from the selvedge (it had already been prewashed).  Worked fine, waist hasn't strectched, no unnecessary bulk.  I now use either self-fabric selvedges or strips from other light (prewashed) cotton fabric, and it works a treat.

          I got the tip from Threads - can't remember which issue - but it has probably saved considerable dollars over the past three years, and really helps when I have a spontaneous sewing session and don't necessarily have all the notions the pattern requires.



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