Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Scrapbusting with Bias Tape

I found this little gadget in the sale bin at my local Fabricland this week -- at 90% off it was a no-brainer to pick it up!

I do love bias tape and have always meant to use up my random dressmaking scraps -- the ones that are too large to chuck but too small to do much else with -- in making loads of bias tape. Now that I have this handy little helper, I had to finally give it a go.

I refreshed my memory of how to do this in the round with this video:

Doing it this way is quick and easy...even easier with a handy tool! You can do it with a pin stuck into your ironing board, apparently, but I never found that very easy to manage.

In any case, I used a scrap left over from the dress I have just finished (love this fabric!) and now have a nice colourful bit of cotton bias tape. Though I must admit it did take me longer than 5 minutes.

For this 1/2"Bias tape maker, I had to cut a 1" strip. I had one that I'd trimmed -- not really bias but this fabric is quite stretchy so I thought I'd use this as my first quick experiment.

You just need a pin to pull the fabric through to start, and then a hot iron to press the fabric as it comes out of the nose of the thingy as you pull the little handle. I found that I had to use my hand to keep the curled form as I pressed it, but it really helped to have the device holding the form even if a bit loosely.

Voila -- a strip of bias(ish) tape! I found that the finished tape was quite narrow,so left it as single fold tape. Another solid press to flatten it out well, and then it was stored on an empty thread spool -- handy, that. 

But then I wanted to try it again with it all done properly, so cut a 12 x 12 square of cotton check, and then remembered that somewhere in my stash I had a 1" tape maker. After a bit of searching, I found it, and so cut the bias strips 2" wide for a finish of 1". I used a Frixion pen to draw on the bias lines. 

Then I cut the strips, ran it through the tape maker and secured it to the end of the ironing board and kept going.

I had quite a bit of bias tape when I was done. And I really like how the check looks on the bias. I think I might use up the rest of that old apron front to make more! When I had run it all through, I then pressed it again to make a double fold bias tape in the finished width I wanted, with one edge just barely meeting the other. It looks great, and will be very useful!

Let's see how much more I can get out of my scrap bag!


  1. I did this a while back, made miles, and still have quite a bit in a zip bag...I don't actually use bias tape often. I found it more sensible to just make all strips about 2" wide, and I don't fold them, as sometimes I use them single, sometimes double etc. Very useful for all sorts of things

    1. I like that idea -- I liked the 2" strips and if they aren't double folded they can be used whichever way you might need. Think I'm adopting that philosophy!


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