How to sew Flat Piping

Flat piping adds detail to seams and edges but without the raised effect or corded piping

How to sew Flat piping

Flat piping gives detail to a garment and is a great way to add emphasis to particular seams or around the edges of collars.

Flat piping should be narrow and give definition. It can be used in a seam, around a pocket or even along an edge. With a bit of careful measuring it can be easy to achieve and accurate finish.

To work out how wide the bias strip needs to be, decide on the amount of piping you want to be visible. then add on the seam allowance you want to use. then double this amount as the bias strip needs to be folded in half. For Example: A usual amount of visible piping is 0.5cm and the seam allowance is usually 1.5cm Giving us 2cm. This is then doubled to give us 4cm for the cut width of bias strip.

By working out how wide to make the piping in the beginning and cutting the bias strip the correct width to start with, you can leave the right amount of seam allowance or ‘flange’ to be able to sew the piping to the garment accurately.

Follow the Bias Strip Videos to find out quick and easy ways of cutting and making Bias Strips.

Making and attaching Flat piping

Fold the bias in half lengthwise and press into place.

Lay the bias down on to the right side of the fabric along the seam allowance of one side of the garment. Make sure that the raw edges of the bias strip sit flush with the edge of the garment.

Sew along the seam line through the bias strip and garment.

Don’t pin the bias all the way around first, leave it free. Position the bias strip as you sew and hold it in place with your fingers. As the bias has more ease in it, if you pin the length of it first you will end up with a bulge of piping at the end where the fabric has stretched slightly as it is sewn.

Lay the other side of the garment with the right side down on top of the piping. Pin in place.

Sew from the piping side so you can see the first row of sewing. Stitch directly on top of this row of sewing.

Press the seam one-way and layer the seam allowance to reduce the bulk.