Adding piping to your seams can add such a special touch. It's totally worth the extra bit of work as it can make your seams more prominent and beautiful.
Piping comes in lots of different colors and is generealy covered in a basic cotton fabric but it looks extra fancy when you create piping covered with self fabric. Whether your pattern calls for it or not, you can add piping to seams if you want to spruce up the design a little. Here's a little tutorial to show you how to cover store bought piping with self fabric.
I used it here in the Simone dress because I wanted to add prominence to the seamlines of the front placket. I broke up the monotony of the blue fabric by added a running stitch in anchor threads to match the piping in order to integrate the colours.
- Store bought piping
- Self fabric
- Scissors or rotary cutter
- Regular zipper foot
- Cut a bias strip of self fabric, long enough for the length of your piping. The width of the strip is determined by the piping diameter and the garment's seam allowance. If the piping is 1/4 thick, and the seam allowance is 5/8", then calculate: 1/4" + 1/4" + 5/8" + 5/8 = 1 3/4"
- If the piping is very long, you may need to cut muliple strips and piece them together. In that case, the ends of the strips should be cut at a 45 degree angles. Lay the strips together and offset them by the seam allowance, which should be about 3/8". This way, once you've sewn them together, the edges will be flush
- Trim off the seam allowance edges
- Place the piping onto the wrong side of the bias strip. Wrap the strip around the piping, matching raw edges and pin along the length of the strip
- In order to sew close to the piping, use a regular zipper foot with the needle set to the right side. Sew along the lenth of the strip
- Voila, you can now use it wherever you like!
- But we're not done yet! You can also purchase decorative cording that has seam allowance
- You'll often find the the cording seam allowance won't match that of your garment. To get around this, draw a chalk line marking your seam allowance on the garment piece where the cording will be sewn. Place the cord along the chalk line, and using a regular zipper foot, staystitch the cord in place
- It will be perfectly positioned for when you sew the adjoining garment pieces together