Sewing Bias – Cutting bias strips and making Spaghetti Straps

Whenever you cut a garment on the bias it’s generally a good idea to use the “lost” corners of the layout to cut some extra bias strips. 1 1/2 inch is a versatile width to bind edges or seams, or make spaghetti (rouleaux) straps like we are showing you today!

To cut delicate fabric like silk and chiffon, we recommend sandwiching it between two layers of paper. Dotted pattern paper is what we like to use, we buy it locally but you can find it here.

Just Patterns - Cutting Delicate Fabric

After ironing your fabric lay it in a single layer over a first layer of paper. Use the edge of the paper to align the selvedge perfectly.

Just Patterns - Cutting Delicate Fabric

Then carefully unroll the second layer of paper over the fabric. Again align the paper edge carefully to the fabric and the first layer of paper.

Just Patterns - Cutting Delicate FabricLay your pattern pieces over the second layer of paper and draw 1 1/2 inch Bias Strips wherever you have significant remnants.

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You can store your additional strips by pinning them together and hanging them close to your sewing machine. They will come in handy more often than you think!

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For the spaghetti/rouleaux straps, fold your strips lengthwise and sew along the folded edge, at no more than 1/8″ (3mm).

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The secret to nicely rounded strap is to not trim the seam allowance and to use a loop turner. Alternatively you could use thread on a tapestry needle but it will be more difficult.

Just Patterns Spaghetti Straps Tutorial

Insert the loop turner all the way through the strap and make a small notch about 1/4″ (6mm) from the end to pull out the hook.

Just Patterns Spaghetti Straps Tutorial194

Pull the loop turner gently, moving and easing the fabric as you go until it is completely turned out.

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Congratulations, you made a beautiful strap ready to be installed on your Kate Bias Top or Christy Slip Dress!

Disclaimer – this post contains affiliate links to products similar to the ones we use in the pictures.

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Sewing Bias – Getting started with Just Patterns

The information we include with our patterns may be less detailed than what you are accustomed to, but they should provide enough information for an intermediate sewer or an adventurous beginner to complete the garment. In this post we’ll show you where to locate the most important elements and use the layered PDF functionality.

When you buy one of our patterns in our Etsy Store, you can download 5 files:

  • The information file
  • The pattern in Letter format
  • The pattern in A4 format
  • The pattern in A0 format
  • and the pattern in US copy shop format

Below is the cover of our Christy Slip Dress:

Just Patterns Cover Christy Slip Dress

In the following pages you will find information about fit, fabric and selecting your size:

2101-Christy-Slip-Dress-Information Underslined-page-002

Next is the cutters must. It summarizes how many of each pattern pieces you need to cut in each fabric (self, lining, fusible, etc.). As well as other pieces for which paper pieces are not provided, such as bias strips. It also includes the technical drawing of the garment and an estimation of fabric requirements. We currently do not include cutting layouts because of how much they can vary  depending on the size you are cutting and the width of your fabric.

Just Patterns Christy Slip Dress information page 3

The following table is a suggested order of operations. This is the order we used to sew the samples shown on the cover. But if you are making changes to the pattern, for instance you decided to make the pattern single layer and finish the edges with bias binding, then this operations will be quite different. The table is designed for you to check at a glance the width of the seam allowances and the type of seams so that you don’t have to rummage through pages of text to find it.

Just Patterns Christy Slip Dress information Operations

In case you need more help, links to tutorials, videos, etc. are available in the resource page of each pattern. Finally, you’ll find the hashtags to share your work on social media. For the slip dress it’s #christyslipdress and for the camisole it’s #katebiastop (there is another Kate Top sewing pattern out there by Tessuti, so don’t forget to add the bias!).

Now let’s have a look at the pattern files! The layers are enabled in every printing format. When you open your pattern in the Adobe Acrobat Reader, use the layers tab on the left of the screen and select only the size you need but keep “print marks” and “all sizes” activated.

Just Patterns Layered PDF

 

As you can see above, the pattern pieces extend beyond the cutting marks. This should make it extra easy for you to put it together. You will also notice that the seam lines are printed on all pieces. Because our seam allowances vary with the type of seams, they are printed on all pieces, for every size. This is why we strongly recommend you use the layer function. Otherwise it can get quite busy, even for a simple pattern.

We hope that this post was useful and we will be back soon for some actual sewing posts! Don’t hesitate to reach out in the comments or anywhere else if you would like more information! Do you see a Christy or a Kate in your near future?