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Stay tape
are they necessary?
rinimakes
rinimakes
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Date: 3/8/13 0:54 AM

I've noticed most of the dresses I want to make, require, for the most part, 'stay tape', which from what I read, is to keep the fabric from stretching, particularly in the shoulder area. This makes sense to me, but while at work I look at the clothing and almost none of the women's clothing has any such item in the shoulder area.
So why do we need to add stay tape (or something similar) if clothing in stores don't have them?

Miss Fairchild
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Date: 3/8/13 1:58 AM

I'm going out on a limb here, but after making several jackets and tops without stay tape, I'm now convinced I need it. And probably because of my fabric choices.

As we place the garment on the hanger, it stretches. As we remove it off the hanger, it stretches. And where? Mostly in the shoulders because that's where it hangs. You're not going to see the stay tape on the outside; only on the inside and at 1/2" seam allowance. And if the garment is lined, it would be inside the lining.

I use selvedges from quilting fabrics for my stay tape--cheaper, easily accessible and is "green minded", as they would probably get tossed out otherwise.

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a7yrstitch
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Date: 3/8/13 7:54 AM

Ooohhh, I would never compare my creations to retail unless it was very expensive retail.

Here's a little sampler of information, The Wild World of Stay Tape, Gertie's New Blog for Better Sewing.

And, my own thoughts.....
Fabric that is cut perpendicular or horizontally to the grain behaves very differently than fabric that is cut diagonally through the grain. There will be times, later, that you will want to take advantage of that difference. Most garments, though, depend on managing that difference in behavior.

When you lay the pattern pieces out for cutting the natural slope of the shoulder line will most always mean that you will be slicing through the fabric diagonally as you cut the pattern piece. And, it could be that you slice through at a slightly different angle for the back shoulder seam as opposed to the front shoulder seam!

Even though it is all the same fabric, as you cut it, the different angles and curves make the fabric behave differently; stretch and ability to snap back are affected.

Underarm curves are another curved area that I stabilize.

It's like a great paint job. The finished product is dependent upon the prep - something that cannot be seen when the job is done.
-- Edited on 3/8/13 8:09 AM --

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PattyE
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Date: 3/8/13 9:13 AM

I think it's totally necessary and I use it in most of my garments. I agree with 7 about the importance of prep.

lgrande
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Date: 3/8/13 9:45 AM

Quote: Miss Fairchild

I use selvedges from quilting fabrics for my stay tape--cheaper, easily accessible and is "green minded", as they would probably get tossed out otherwise.

Really, really clever!!! I'll have to remember to save those selvedges.

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solosmocker
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Date: 3/8/13 4:26 PM

I keep a big jar of those selvedges as well, for my stay tape purposes.

You didn't see it in your retail snooping because we live in the era of fast fashion, where what we see, even in higher end stores is made overseas as cheaply and quickly as possible. Stay tape? In your dreams! Never compare a custom sewn garment to regular retail, particularly today in this era of fast fashion.

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BLMLB
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Date: 3/8/13 8:38 PM

Thanks for the info. My local Wal-Mart 30 miles away doesn't have stay tape.I never thought about making my own.

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diane s
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Date: 3/9/13 0:13 AM

If it's for a knit garment I make mine out of fusible tricot knit interfacing. I cut strips, on the the straight or bias with my rotary cutter. (they sell it the tricot interfacing at WalMart)

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Date: 3/9/13 8:12 AM

I use clear elastic for the shoulders on my knits.

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SandiMacD
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Date: 3/9/13 3:17 PM

I recently ordered a variety of stay tape for my knits from
http://shop.emmaseabrooke.com/

They arrived yesterday.

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