I’m a big fan of using piping as a trim on garments, and my current favourite place is to sew it into the waistline of a dress:
|piping at the waistline of my Aurora Dress|
|Piping at the waistline of my 1950’s Red Spot Dress|
Gail asked if I had done a tutorial on this, right before I was about to put piping at the waistline of my red tartan dress – so here goes!
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 – I just plonk my ruler in place and chalk around that because it is quick and easy:
I cut this out, then remembered I was using a checked fabric, lol! I recut the strip at the same angle as the line in the left corner, so that it passes through the same part of the check pattern along it’s length (most checks aren’t actually squares, but are rectangular, so you need to cut slightly off the true bias to get this effect).
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!
Because I’m an accuracy nerd, I don’t sew the piping into the waistline willy-nilly, but measure it against my pattern for an accurate measurement. Chalk the piping at the CB, darts, seams and CF, remembering to skip the dart intake and seam allowances:
Now you can sew your piping to the bodice. Stitch along the same path as the piping stitching, and match those chalk marks to the relevant seams:
Nice eh? I’m so glad I recut the binding, it was worthwhile to get it all symmetrical like this. When it comes to checks, I am definitely a matchy-matchy person! (by the way, I’m still working on my check-matching post – 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. It could be 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?