How to Make Your Own Bias Tape

For those of you who love to sew as much as I do, I see homemade bias tape in your future. Sure, you can go to the store and buy some plain trim, but why not make your own. It’s easy, fun and the possibilities are endless. That’s why I created this new bias tape series for you. Today, I’ll teach you how to make your own, and then, for the next few weeks, I’ll show you the fun things you can do with all that bias tape I know you’re going to want to make.

The beauty of bias tape is, because it is cut on the bias (45 degree angle) of the fabric, it is super pliable, has stretch and it can curve around all kinds of shapes. It can be used to finish off a raw edge on almost anything—hems, armholes, necklines, ruffles, peplums and seams, just to mention a few. You can create your own in any color, pattern or size you’d like. Making your own saves loads of money. And homemade bias tape makes a great gift for all of your sewing friends. So, what are we waiting for? Let’s turn up some good music and get started!

How to Make Your Own Bias Tape
(Image: Beth Huntington)
How to Make Your Own Bias Tape
(Image: Beth Huntington)

Things You'll Need

  • Fabric

  • Bias tape marker, optional

  • Rotary cutter

Things you'll need
(Image: Beth Huntington)

Tip

You don’t have to have a bias tape maker, but it does make the process a little easier. There are many out there on the market and they come in different sizes, but the main thing to remember is that the measurement listed on the package is for single fold bias tape. So, if you’re making 1/2 inch double fold bias tape, like I did here, then you’ll need a one inch bias tape maker.

Step 1

First, pick out some fabrics you like. For this tutorial, I chose cute cotton fabrics with a small print. You can also use satin, corduroy, knits or cotton blends.

How to Make Your Own Bias Tape
(Image: Beth Huntington)

Step 2

Now turn on some good music and fold your fabric to form a triangle.

Fold
(Image: Beth Huntington)

Cut off the extra piece.

Fold and cut
(Image: Beth Huntington)

Step 3

Next, fold this triangle in half by taking the top corner and folding it down to meet the bottom corner. This will create a triangle with four layers of fabric that has one side with raw edges, one side with two folds, and one side with one fold.

Fold triangle
(Image: Beth Huntington)

Pivot your triangle so the edge with one fold is at the bottom and clean up the raw edges.

Clean up raw edges
(Image: Beth Huntington)

Step 4

Using your rotary cutter, cut 2 inch strips.

Cut strips
(Image: Beth Huntington)

Step 5

Right sides together, line up the short ends of the strips. Sew a quarter inch seam.

Sew seam
(Image: Beth Huntington)

Trim off the little triangles that were sticking out.

Trim
(Image: Beth Huntington)

Step 6

Press the seam open.

Press seam open
(Image: Beth Huntington)

Step 7

Place the end of your strip into the bias tape maker. Pull it through to the other side and start the fold.

Place strip in bias tape marker
(Image: Beth Huntington)
Start the fold
(Image: Beth Huntington)

Step 8

Press the folds as you pull the strip of fabric through the bias tape maker. One fold will be slightly smaller than the other fold.

Press folds
(Image: Beth Huntington)
Folds
(Image: Beth Huntington)

Step 9

Fold the strip in half again and press with a hot steam iron. Notice how one edge is a little smaller than the other. Continue to press the entire strip.

Fold and press
(Image: Beth Huntington)

I don’t know about you, but to me, there is something very comforting about ironing and creating yards and yards of bias tape. With some good music playing, I could seriously do this all day long.

Now wrap your cute bias tape around some stiff cardboard and get started making more…

How to Make Your Own Bias Tape
(Image: Beth Huntington)
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