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Tips & Techniques > Turning Tubes of Fabric

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Posted by: Melissa S.
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About Melissa S. star
NY USA
Member since: 8/24/02
Reviews: 44 (tips: 1)
Skill level:Intermediate
Favored by: 5 people
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Posted on: 11/11/04 10:33 AM
Review Rating: Very Helpful by 12 people   
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I have tried many methods to turn narrow tubes of fabric, including borrowing my mother's FasTube turner set. The one that has worked best for me with the least amount of fabric distortion/bruising is to use a ribbon basted to the short end of the tube. I can't remember where I heard about this technique but it always works well for me:

Step 1: Cut a length of ribbon that is a few inches longer than the tube you wish to turn.
Step 2: Fold the fabric in half so that the long edges meet. Sandwich the length of ribbon in the middle.
Step 3: Baste one short end of the fabric layers to secure the end of the ribbon.
Step 4: Stitch the long side of the fabric layers, being careful not to catch the ribbon in the stitching.
Step 5: Pull the ribbon through the tube, thus turning the tube right side out.
Step 6: Remove the basting threads that secured the ribbon. The ribbon will easily pull out.

The job is made easier if a wider ribbon is used for wider tubes.

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11 Comments
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cfulcher said... (7/15/09 7:11 AM) Reply
This was a wonderful tip. I tried this because I too was frustrated with turning narrow tubes and this method worked like a charm.
craftygamma said... (6/29/09 6:28 AM) Reply
Thank you for the tip! I am just about to make a sundress for DGD with skinny straps, and I will use your method.
Vintage Joan said... (5/12/09 3:57 PM) Reply
I wish I had read this earlier! I just -- AGAIN -- gave up in exasperation after spending nearly an hour trying to turn a fabric tube. Your idea sounds like it will actually work -- thank you!!!
MelissaB in WA said... (2/19/08 11:24 PM) Reply
Well that sure is a great tip, I'm going to try that next time I need to turn a tube of fabric right side out!
thaiyal said... (10/11/05 9:04 AM) Reply
Wow! What a neat idea! Thanks for sharing it.
ohsewgood said... (11/17/04 7:37 PM) Reply
Absolutely fantastic ~ perfect every time ~ what a time saver. So glad I found this site ~ so many useful information ~ I hope to add my own :)
SandraB said... (11/16/04 12:18 PM) Reply
THis is a great idea. Thank you.
candyo said... (11/12/04 6:58 PM) Reply
I just did this last nite!
iblondie said... (11/12/04 12:28 PM) Reply
Can't wait to try this! Thanks for the great idea. Also, nylon cord would work great too on the skinny tubes thus lessen the chance of sewing through the ribbon.
Barbara J said... (11/12/04 5:24 AM) Reply
Excellent tip, I hate turning tubes, usually talk DH into doing it for me but should be able to do it myself from now on.
D1Diva said... (11/11/04 1:35 PM) Reply
What a great idea! I'm going to try this one. I loath the idea of turning skinny tubes and I've bought some useless notions to do so. Thanks for the tip!
 
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