Sunday, August 15, 2010

Technique -- Bias Fringe

Earlier today, I blogged about my latest jacket, and how I inserted self bias fringe into some of the seams. I volunteered to make a tutorial if anyone was interested. Gwen was interested, so here you go, Gwen. :)


  • Silk organza, cut into 1" bias strips and a little longer than the seam. The organza is inserted into the seam and, for me, a 1" piece of organza created a width of about 3/8", so if you want a wider width, cut your organza wider.
  • Fashion fabric, cut into 1-1/2" bias strips, also a bit longer than you need. I made a separate strip for each of the six seams I was embellishing.

Instructions for sewing a strip:

  • Iron the 1-1/2" bias strip of the fashion fabric in half, the long way. This crease becomes the stitching line.
  • Center the bias organza strip over the bias fashion strip and machine stitch along the crease.
  • Bring the edges of the fashion fabric together, so the raw edges meet.
  • Likewise, bring the edges of the organza together, so the raw edges meet. You have re-folded the fabric along the line of stitching.
  • Iron the strip. The fashion fabric layer is now doubled, as is the organza layer.
  • Zigzag along the previous stitching line. This anchors everything and keeps it flat. The organza edge is inserted into the seam and, because silk organza was used, it creates minimal bulk.

Instructions for fringing a strip:

  • Separate the fashion fabric layers - you will be fringing one layer at a time.
  • Start unraveling the fabric, using an awl, or the back (non-cutting edge) of a seam ripper - a sharp tool of some kind.

  • Once the first edge is unraveled, do the same on the other edge. At this point, you will have fibers that go every which way.

  • Spend some time orienting the fibers to the correct direction. It can help to use a comb to "groom" them.

At this point, there will be errant fibers that are too long. I gently trim these after sewing the strips into the garment.


  1. Shams, thank you for the instructions. I unsuccessfully left a message on your earlier post telling you how much I love this jacket and admire your intrepid spirit. Maybe this message will get through. I also go to Fabrix and almost always leave with something out of the ordinary. Mary M. Mohr

  2. What a clever way to make and attach fringe! Thanks! Your jacket looks like such fun to wear.

  3. I have saved this technique in OneNote - thank you for sharing this! (Your jacket is GORGEOUS!)

  4. Wow! Thats really fluffy fringing.

  5. Thank you Shams, for the great instructions and photos. What a super technique. Amazing!

  6. Great tutorial! I'm eager to find a use for this method now. Thanks!

  7. I love the clever use of plaid direction in the sleeves, Shams. And the fringe? Dynamite! You've got one great look going on with your new jacket. Congrats!

  8. Thank you so much for posting this, Shams. Very nice fringe.

  9. Thanks for the tutorial! Too cool! I love fringes! Love the jacket!

  10. I just discovered your blog today, and wanted to drop you a line and say how happy I am to see someone who likes the same kind of patterns AND has the same type of body that I do! I have a bunch of Sewing Workshop patterns sitting uncut because I was afraid that my 'tube with boobs' figure wouldn't look good in them. (No offense meant to you - I call myself that because my waist, hip, and high bust are pretty much the same, with a significant increase at the full bust).
    So thanks for putting yourself (and your great clothes!) out there. I'm definitely a new fan!

  11. Birdmommy, welcome! I am always looking for others with a similar body shape to mine, but it's fairly unique. Though many have a large bust (though not as many that are quite *so* large) but there are extremely few with the big bust that *also* have slim hips/legs, and that general ice cream cone shape.

    I love SW patterns, but not all work for me and even those that do often require altering. If you do sew any up, please put them on your blog (if you have one) or put a review on PatternReview - I'd love to see them!

  12. Thank you, Shams, I just love the fringe!

  13. All I can say is WOW, love the fringe, Not sure where I will use it but I'm thinking of maybe on baby quilts in the silky material for a special feely. Love your blog too.

  14. Hi Shams,

    Great tute. I was reading it, trying to figure out what you were doing, but not having any luck. Then I got down to wear the pictures are, and realized I barely needed the written instructions, they were so self-explanatory.

  15. Thanks for this tutorial. I am keen to try this.

  16. Thank you so much for this tutorial, I can imagine all sorts of possibilities!