A Positive Bias

As a sewer and a quilter, there is nothing that I like more than finding a gadget that saves me time and makes things easier.  Right now I’m working on a baby quilt for my newest grandchild, little Luke.  Yesterday, I was ready to make some bias tape for the edging.  I like to make my own from whatever fabric I’ve chosen to complement the quilt top.  It can be a tedious process.  But this little gadget has simplified life immensely.

It’s a Clover Bias Tape Maker.  Clover makes these in a variety of sizes, depending on what width of bias tape you wish to make.  They are really simple little gadgets, too and inexpensive, ranging from $3 to $5 each.   You should be able to find them in any fabric/sewing store.  So how do they work?

Well, first you need to cut out your fabric strips and sew them together, end to end until you have as many connected as you wish.  I usually sew them all since I figure I can always find a use for the leftover binding I’ve made up.  Now to create the bias tape.  The hardest part is just getting the fabric strip started into the gadget.  To do that, I take one end of my fabric and fold it into thirds or fourths to make a firm section.  Then I push it through the widest part of this opening.  Once it pokes through on the other smaller end, I grab it and start pulling it through until I can open it up and straighten the fabric out to look like the picture.  I realize that I’ll lose a few inches at the beginning before things get adjusted but I usually have yards of bias tape made before I’m done so I’m not worried.

Now just grab that little silver handle in your left hand (if you are right-handed) and start pulling it slowly to your left as you steam-iron the resulting bias tape that comes out the other end.  Try to keep the center of the colored plastic insert on the device lined up with the center of the folded edges.  You might occasionally have to straighten out your fabric on the other end to keep things moving smoothly.

It really will seem like magic and before you know it, you’ll have a pile of lovely bias tape all ready to bind the edges of your quilt.  It’s easy as can be.  Don’t you just love it when that happens?
I’m providing a link to a review of another bias tape maker out there.  It looks interesting.  Don’t know how much it costs but nice to know you have options.

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