Thursday, 27 October 2016

Making Bias Tape

Recently I had the opportunity to borrow a bias maker from Stitching Hearts to make a bazillion metres of bias tape.

Now why would I be making so much bias tape you might ask.

Because for the last few years I have been making little draw string bags for the Samaritan's Operation Christmas Child Shoeboxes.  I make heaps of them, and this year I thought I would make bias tape to use for the "string".

So how does it work?

You start by winding strips of fabric joined into long lengths onto the take up reel.  I set it all up on my ironing board.

And then threading it through what looks like a regular bias tape maker.  The square thingy to the left of the tool is actually the iron.

Once the motor is turned on, the tape comes whizzing out from the iron section at the rate of knots.  You have to really keep your wits about you, its so fast.

I was using the 3/4" tape maker, but there are oodles of other sizes in the accessory box.

Then I sewed the two folded edges together to make the tape.

Here's the stuff I packed into the 2 boxes I donated.  I chose to do them for boys aged 10 - 12 as I have heard that they are the least well provided for in this campaign.

They like to have stationery equipment for school, a few toiletries, a toy or two, and the odd bit of clothing - this year I picked up a couple of tee shirts.  Then its a matter of stuffing the boxes brimful.

The extra bags I make I take to the school my grand daughters attend, which is just down the road.  The school packs up around 800 bags with donations from the students and their families, and the 6th formers pack them up assembly line style. 

And so how many bags did I make this year?  I roped in a couple of my Friday Quilter friends to chip in, and also middle gd (13) who came to Friday Quilters during the July school holidays.  With their help we made a total of 185 bags.   And this is what that looked like.....

Some close up, just to make sure you see them.  LOL

The fabrics are mostly ones that I would not dream of using in a quilt because I think its ugly, so I am really pleased to have used them in something useful which just might give someone some pleasure.  The tape this year was a success - I would not have been able to afford to buy that amount in, and the tape itself used up some excess fabrics too.  A win/win in my book.

Til next time.....Keep on stitching


  1. Hi Dasha what a great way of making bias tape,well done with all those bags xx

  2. Wow! That's a great machine. I didn't such a thing existed. It save a bazillion of minutes of your time too. Lol! I use shoe string for my draw string bags. I don't feel like make 30 miles of tape. Congrats to all of you, on making so many bags. It's heartwarming! ;^)

  3. What a great machine.... looks like fun too! Oh, I love this charity.... I used to contribute when we lived in Switzerland via the children's school.... I will have to look up if I can do some close to where I am now! Christine x

  4. I've seen those bias machines and they work like magic. It's a great way to make the ribbons for your bags. And well done to your group for making so many. What an acheivement.

  5. What a brilliant machine! The shoe boxes are a great way of giving and you have made a great job of all those little bags. Great way to de stash too! xx


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