Bonus Lesson: Piping

Updated: May 23, 2019



In this bonus lesson we are going to discuss how to make piping yardage for your dress. You can find all the previous lessons listed here. The July Flowers pattern comes with a pattern piece 8 which is enough yardage to pipe the waistline of the dress. I am going to show you how to make additional yardage if you wish to pipe the neckline, and armholes. Even if you chose to add the ruffle or scalloped edging to the neckline, you still might wish to pipe it. You will find the video right below, but as always, I will explain as well.!


First determine the yardage that you need by using your tape measure and measuring the parts of the dress that you have chosen to pipe. You will want to make additional yardage, so round up as you go and add an extra inch or two. I am going to pipe the neckline, armholes and waistline, so for my size 3 dress I am going to make 70 inches of piping. Find that true 45 degree angle and cut 1 1/2"" strips. (The video explains how to do this as well as how to use the pattern piece if you don't have a rotary cutter and ruler.).


To join the strips, position with rights sides together at right angles and stitch diagonally from corner to corner. Trim the seam allowances to 1/4" and press open.


Lay the piping cord down the middle of the strip. Put the piping foot on the machine and set the machine for a straight stitch with a length of 2-2.5. Slip the cord into the grove of the foot and move the needle position over toward the piping cord. I moved mine 2 positions over. You do not want the needle as close as it can go. The piping cord should have some breathing room. Stitch along the cord, pinching the cord between the strip with your left hand, and using the two nails of your right hand to push the cord against the fold.


If you don't have a piping foot, use your zipper foot and position it right up against the cord. I found when using the zipper foot that I had to move my needle all the way over to the left.


Trim the piping cord to a 1/2" seam allowance using a piping ruler. The ruler has a grove that the piping cord slips through. If you don't have a piping ruler, use a regular ruler and mark the 1/2" seam allowance on the strip using your fabric marker. Carefully trim with your fabric shears. Our piping is now finished and ready to be attached to our bodice which we will cover in Lesson 4!


#sewingforbeginners #sewingforchildren #tutorials #dresses

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