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Forum > Beginner's Forum > Is there a difference between seam binding and bias tape? ( Moderated by EleanorSews)

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Is there a difference between seam binding and bias tape?
sewing in the city
sewing in the city
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Date: 5/31/10 7:55 PM

I can't find the answer to this online and it seems it might depend on the purpose you're using it for. I bought bias tape from the store because they didn't have any seam binding. I'm also not sure which is best to get between single fold and double fold.

I'm trying to figure this out because McCalls 5330 calls for seam binding to reinforce the hem for the skirt's back slit.

Thanks

marec
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Date: 5/31/10 8:14 PM

Bias tape is cut on a 45 degree angle, or on the "bias". It will stretch a bit because of that and can be shaped to a curve. Seam tape is just a plain ribbon for seams and hems.

HTH, marec

ETA: you can use either though the seam tape is thinner and might be easier for your purposes. I use bias tape for binding armholes, necklines and finishing seams.
-- Edited on 5/31/10 8:16 PM --

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sewing in the city
sewing in the city
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Date: 5/31/10 8:25 PM

Thanks (if only the people who I talked to at the notions store knew that . . .)

ryan's mom
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Date: 5/31/10 10:38 PM

When I was 12, I was taught to use "seam binding" (aka stretch lace) as one method to finish raw edges (like on a skirt hem). It was a lacy tape, and I HATED using it. Why? Because every sewer (that I knew) used it for this purpose, thus the garment looked "home made". As a young pre-teen/teen, home made was like the kiss of death for a garment. It's only lately I've been giving it a second look for this purpose.

Of course, what everyone calls a seam gauge, I call a hem gauge. It's just the terminology my 8th grade Home Ec teacher used to use in Sewing class.

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whistlin dixie
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whistlin dixie
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In reply to sewing in the city


Date: 5/31/10 10:59 PM

If I'm understanding the use of the binding correctly, you'll need seam binding, not bias tape. Bias tape is used to "bind" - that is, cover or conceal, a raw edge. Seam binding is sometimes used to stabilize an area that might be under stress. It sounds like the seam binding is a reinforcement in your skirt pleat. Bias tape won't work well for that.
Can you tell us how the instructions have you use the tape?

Dixie

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sewing in the city
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Date: 6/2/10 2:35 PM

The instructions have me put a short piece (about 1 to 2 inches) of the stuff along the slit, parallel to the slit (I think on both sides, but maybe just one one), they say it's to reinforce the seam at the slit.

EleanorSews
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In reply to sewing in the city


Date: 6/2/10 3:00 PM

Sounds like you need seam binding.

As a thought, if you have a piece of lining fabric in a suitable color, cut the length you need from the selvege edge. 3/8" to 1/2" wide which might just keep it all in the tightly woven selvege edge area. Use pinking shears maybe.

Edited to add that you do not need to pink the outside selvege edge as it is a finished edge. Just in case.... Thepinking would be on the 3/8" or 1/2" inside edge.
-- Edited on 6/2/10 3:57 PM --

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CM_Sews
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In reply to EleanorSews


Date: 6/2/10 3:36 PM

Quote: EleanorSews
Sounds like you need seam binding.



As a thought, if you have a piece of lining fabric in a suitable color, cut the length you need from the selvege edge. 3/8" to 1/2" wide which might just keep it all in the tightly woven selvege edge area. Use pinking shears maybe.

I almost never see seam real seam binding like this (The Sewing Place) in stores anymore -- it looks like a thin, but stable, rayon ribbon. To stabilize a seam, a strip of selvege or twill tape are good candidates. You want a fabric or ribbon-type strip that is on the straight-of-grain, with no stretchiness, in order to stabilize that seam.

Another product to consider is Stay Tape. I've seen this under both the Dritz and Collins brand. Most Mega Fabric stores (JoAnn's, Hancocks) should have this is stock. I use this to stabilize shoulder seams. It's stable, not bulky or scratchy.

CMC
sewing in the city
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Date: 6/2/10 4:32 PM

Thanks so much. I found some on etsy, but that site looks great and maybe cheaper. At least it's not expensive. For some reason I am tempted to get multiple colors I like . . .

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