Today, I’m going to show you how to sew bias tape in a circle.
I’m making the sleeveless version of Hawthorn, and since we’ve already covered the short sleeve and the 3/4 length sleeve, I’ll be showing the sleeveless variation, which I’m making in this gorgeous silk/cotton Marc Jacobs fabric.
So, whether or not you’re making Hawthorn with us, if you’ve ever wanted to know how to sew a bias facing around a circular opening, read on!
1. Open out your 1/4 inch double fold bias tape.
2. On the right side of your bodice armhole, pin the bias tape to the armhole, right sides together. Leave a gap at the bottom of the armhole, at the underarm seam, and a few inches of bias tape trailing on each side of the gap.
3. Stitch the bias tape to the armhole along the first fold line, which is the fold closest to the raw edge. Again, leave an inch or two at the bottom unstitched. We’ll get to that.
4. Pinch the bias tape together at the underarm to cover the gap you left. Pin the bias tape together at the underarm. The pin will mark exactly how much tape you need to cover up that little gap. Make sure to just pin through the bias tape, not the bodice.
5. Stitch the bias tape ends together right where you placed the pin. Sometimes it can be a little fiddly to get the bias tape ends to lay together correctly, so just make sure you have them lined up neatly under your presser foot before you stitch.
6. Trim the excess ends off the bias tape.
7. Press the bias tape seam allowance open.
8. Stitch along the first fold line over the remaining gap. Now your bias tape is stitched in a circle around the armhole and it’s time to turn it in and finish it up.
9. Turn the bias tape in along the folds again, wrapping it around the seam allowance.
10. Turn the bias tape again to the inside of the armhole, along the stitching line, and press into place.
11. On the inside of the armhole, edgestitch the bias tape in place. If you have an edgestitch foot, now’s the time to use it!
12. Give the armhole a final press to flatten it out and shape it. You might notice some wrinkles, or the bias tape stitcking out a little funny. A good press with lots of steam (if your fabric will tolerate it) can really help you shape that armhole just right.
And that’s it! Your armholes are finished!
You can also use this technique to bind an opening rather than use the bias tape as a facing. All you need to do is skip step 10.
I am really thrilled with how my dress is coming along. I can’t wait to show you all! How is yours coming?