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Tips & Techniques > Bias tape to bind zippers

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Posted by: nancy2001
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Posted on: 2/11/08 9:41 AM
Review Rating: Helpful by 3 people   Very Helpful by 27 people   
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If you'd like to add an upscale touch to your zip-up jackets, you could trim your zipper tapes with ribbon the way activewear companies like Nike and Patagonia do. But grosgrain ribbon is hard to work with, and it's difficult to get a perfect, consistent edge.

A great alternative is to bind the zipper's edge with Wright's prefolded Double Fold Bias Tape. The 1/4" width of this inexpensive and widely available tape is the perfect size for outerwear zippers. And it's extremely to easy to get foolproof results when you stitch the tape to your zipper before you sew the zipper into your jacket.

Simply wrap the bias tape snugly around the edge of the zipper and sew your seam 1/8" in from the edge. You don't need to use a binder foot. The common stitch-in-the ditch foot (Bernina #10, the Viking edge joining foot, etc.) gives you the perfect edge. Just use your finger to ensure the tape is snuggly folded around the zipper's edge as your sewing machine completes the stitch.

I tried this for the first time last night, and even though I'm obviously not a sewing expert, I got a flawless, factory-like, trimmed zipper in about ten minutes. The 1/4" bias tape trim did not interfere with my regular zipper installation in any way. And when my jacket was done, the inside of my jacket looked posh and professional -- no more naked zipper tapes.

I think this is a great way to add a special touch to activewear zip-up jackets. And best of all, it costs less than fifty cents to do.

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ukdame said... (1/14/10 4:26 PM) Reply
I apparantly ordered some 1/4 navy bias over the holidays and then totally forgot why I bought it. Now I know..ha..
Yvonski said... (8/21/09 5:12 AM) Reply
Thanks Nancy, Depeeka pointed this tip out recently, and I have just tried it. Fantastic.
nickie63 said... (2/17/08 11:20 PM) Reply
I think this would work great when makeing a cloth hand bag where you use a heavy duty zipper.
Leslie in NZ said... (2/13/08 6:47 PM) Reply
Thank you for this tip. I have just the project I am going to use it on.
deepwaters31 said... (2/13/08 6:18 PM) Reply
i think thats a great look and cheep
librarylady said... (2/12/08 6:28 PM) Reply
Many thanks for sharing this... it's so elegant.
Ronda Rae said... (2/12/08 5:44 AM) Reply
great idea!
seweibhlin said... (2/11/08 9:58 AM) Reply
great idea thanks
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