Sunday, June 19, 2011

I Got a New Gadget: The Simplicity Bias Tape Maker

Hello All!

I love the finished look that bias tape gives a project but I have always been annoyed by the limited selection of colors. Plus, no prints. This week I got the Simplicity Bias Tape Maker from I am so glad I did! This little machine enables you to easily make awesome coordinated bias tape. I made 4 different 9 yard lengths in 2 afternoons.  It definitely took me far less time to make the last 2 batches. Once you figure out the process, it flies by rather quickly. 

I used the Bias Tape Tutorial on the blog Made to learn how to prep and cut my fabric.  I used this video on to learn how to use the machine itself. It is incredibly easy to use and makes a very nice finished product. 

One thing to note is that the machine only makes single fold bias tape. If you want double fold bias tape, you have to take the single fold bias tape and fold it in half again lengthwise and press by hand.  I tried running it through the machine again and did not have much luck. It does not take long to press the tape with your iron and I really believe that the results are worth it.

I have only used the 1" tip that came with the machine. It has worked very well. This tip gives you 1" single fold bias tape that results in 1/2" double fold bias tape. I was lucky to find a bunch of other tips on clearance at Joann's for $2 - $3 a piece. I also found 2 of the Winding Buddy 2-Pack's for $3 each.

A few notes on what I have done so far:

  1. Always press and starch the seams thoroughly in the long bias strips before running the fabric through the machine. The first time I used the machine, I was not so consistant and some of the seams got stuck in the roller. The next time I carefully starched and pressed each seam and had no problems.
  2. Always wash and dry your fabric before you make your bias tape. I noticed that the selvedge edge shrinks more than the rest of the fabric and needs to be cut off because it will pull in the edges of your tape at the seams.
  3. Sometimes it is a bit difficult to thread the fabric through the tip. You can easily solve this by using a pin or small scissors to push the fabric through the tip.
  4. I have only used the machine with 100% cotton woven fabric. I have not tried any knits.
  5. Cut up delivery boxes make great bias tape spools =) Re-Use!

If you use a lot of bias tape, this little gadget is definitely worth the price. If you don't, it might not be worth it. However, you might just find that you want to add bias tape to all your projects once you discover how cool it can be! 

Who else has a bias tape maker? What has your experience been? Please share!

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