|Many Burda World of Fashion magazine patterns call for Vilene Bias Tape, a product that is unavailable where I live. I did some searching and found that this elusive product, which comes in black or white, is a 12 mm (1/2") wide fusible bias tape with a row of stitching 4 mm (1/6") from an edge. The stitching is apparently what controls the amount of stretch and protects stabilized edges from distortion.
The sleeveless dress pattern I am working on calls for Vilene Bias Tape along the armhole edges. I decided to try faking it with available materials: packaged plain bias tape, temporary spray adhesive and a row of stitching.
My fabric is rather sheer, so I chose red bias tape to match the fabric as closely as possible. I pressed the bias tape open and used my rotary cutter to cut it into 1/2" strips the length of the armhole plus about 1". I sprayed the underside of the strips with temporary spray adhesive. Then I positioned the tape on the wrong side of the fabric 1/4" from the raw edge, pulling the tape snug (but not too taut) as I eased it into place. Then I stitched it in place 1/2" from the raw edge, using a stitch length of 2.2 mm. Finally, I cut off the excess length of bias tape at both underarm edges.
When the lining was positioned and the 5/8" seam sewn, the bias tape held the seam nicely. I clipped the curve to the seam line (including part of the width of the bias tape), turned and pressed. The resulting armhole has lovely shape and doesn't sag!
I have heard that strips of fusible interfacing can be used in place of the Vilene, but bias tape comes in more colours. Also, the temporary adhesive allows lifting and repositioning the tape until you've got it where you want it. I'll do it this way again.