I’m a big fan of using piping as a trim on garments, and recently I have been sewing it into the waistline of dresses:
|Piping in the waistline of my Aurora Dress|
|Piping in the waistline of my 1950’s Red Spot Dress|
One reader asked if I had done a tutorial on this, right before I was about to sew piping into the waistline of a red tartan dress – the perfect timing!
You can buy piping ready-made, but it is usually fairly cheap polyester/cotton or polyester satin stuff:
or you can buy piping cord and cover it yourself:
or do what I did – stash bust and take the cord out of some old piping you no longer want!
Next you need to cut bias strips to cover your piping cord. I’m using self-fabric, and have marked a line 45degrees to the selvedge. You will need a strip about 3cm wide and slightly longer than your waistline. My metal ruler is the correct width, so I plonk it in place and chalk around that to make it quick and easy:
I cut this out, then remembered I was using a checked fabric! Most checks aren’t true squares but are rectangular instead, so you need to cut slightly off the true bias to pass through the same part of the check pattern. I recut the strip at the same angle as the line in the left corner – thank goodness I had enough fabric!
To sew up your piping you’ll need a zip foot on your machine:
Wrap the fabric around the cord, right side facing out, and stitch as close as you can to the piping cord:
Voila – pretty piping!
Some people sew the piping straight into the waistline, but I like to measure it against my pattern for more accurate results. Lay the piping on your pattern and chalk the piping at the CB, darts, seams and CF, remembering to skip the dart intake and seam allowances:
Now you can sew the piping to the bodice. Stitch along the same line of stitching you used to form the piping, and match your chalk marks to the relevant seams:
Nice eh? I’m glad I recut the binding, it was worthwhile to get it looking symmetrical. When it comes to checks, I am definitely a matchy-matchy person! (by the way, I’m still working on my article about check matching – it keeps getting bigger…..)
There are so many fun things you can do with piping – edging collars and cuffs, accenting style lines, etc – and I think covering your own always looks classy.
Piping could be made from self fabric, a contrast colour, or a texture contrast like satin. Whatever you choose, piping is simple and effective. Are you a piping fan too?