Figgy's Blog

binding ofelia and a giveaway! March 24 2012, 27 Comments

I promised Jen would be back with another wonderful tutorial for all of us and this time she's teaching us a wonderful way to add a gorgeous binding to the Ofelia.  Pair this with her adorable tie and you have the perfect brother sister set!

From Jen:

The Ofelia  pattern is my all time favorite little girl dress pattern. Its FOUR pieces, easy to sew, only takes a yard of fabric, is stylish and well, Amelia my daughter loves it. Which means she already has four hanging in her closest. But they are getting small and are ready to pass down. Since I've already made them with the cute ribbon down the front, I thought I’d try something new!

Digging into my scrap bins, I found the answer.  Below I’ll show you how to create this super cute patchwork binding as well as how to attach it three different ways. This is also a great way to add length to a dress if you have a tall lanky girl like I do.

By no means am I the expert in binding the hem of a dress. I've learned by trial and error. The point of this tutorial and showing you three different ways is to get you motivated! To get you to sew! To look at these, and think “Hey that’s not so hard-I can do that!” Because really, that’s what it takes, a little motivation, a little confidence and a desire to try.

 

So do it.

Try something new today.

Make a cute dress for your little one and then make it your own with special little touches!

 

Supplies

  • An almost complete Ofelia Dress (You can win a PDF download of this!)
  • Scraps of fabric measuring 1-4 inches by 5 inches
  • Regular sewing materials (machine, thread, cutting mat, rotary cuter, ruler, etc)

The first method is what I most commonly see in today’s patterns. It’s great to use if you want the inside seam to be completely hidden and if you don’t have a serger.

 

Step One: Making the binding

  • Measure the bottom of your dress to determine how long your binding should be and add ½ inch.
  • With your scraps sew them together to make one long strip that equals the width of the dress (mine was around 40 inches)

 

Step Two: Press and Square Up

  • Press your seams, which ever way suits you. (I press mine to the side-I like the texture it gives)
  • Square up the binding using a ruler and a rotary cutter. I found that five inches wide on all of these worked best. I made the 6/7 size dress-adjust the binding according to the dress size and preference.

 

Step Three: Attach

  • Press one side up a ¼ inch
  • Pin the binding to the bottom of the dress raw edges together and right sides to right sides.
  • Join the ends of the binding by sewing a ¼ inch seam and creating a circle. Press.
  • Attach to the hem using a ¼ inch seam

 

Step Four: Finishing

  • Press your seam down towards the binding
  • Fold the biding in half so the pre pressed ¼ inch seam just covers your stitch line (photo 2)
  • Pin in place and top stitch using a 1/8th inch seam allowance

This next method is my favorite and the one I call the “down and dirty”. It’s quick, easy and still looks neat and professional. I also totally thought I made it up-yeah I know, total dork…

 

Follow steps 1 and 2 above to make your binding.

Step One: Attaching the binding

  • Create a circle by sewing your end seams together with a ¼ inch seam (do this by measuring your dress hem width and adding ½ inch)
  • Fold the binding in half with wrong sides together. Press.
  • Pin to the hem and stitch a ¼ seam
  • Serge

 

Step Two: Finishing

  • Press the seam towards the bottom/binding
  • Top stitch using an 1/8th inch seam

(Note: Some people press up and stitch above binding-do what you like best just make sure to catch the serged seam allowance in your stitch)

 

The last method is probably the most traditional. It’s a double fold and adds weight and some thickness to the hem. It would be good on a heavy weight fabric such as wool. It also creates a narrower hem.

Follow steps 1 and 2 in the first set of directions to create your binding.

Step One: Create the double fold and attach

  • Fold the binding in half wrong sides together. Press
  • Open the binding and fold one side all of the way to the center line. Press.
  • Fold the other side towards the center but leave a ¼ inch gap.
  • Fold in half and press. One side will be slightly wider than the other

 

Step Two: Attaching

  • Open the binding. Pin the narrower side to the hem of the dress with right sides together matching the raw edges
  • When you get to the ends, turn one end up a ¼ inch (photo 1 below)
  • Place the other end on top to over lap (photo 2 below)
  • Stitch in the fold line (photo 3 below)

Note: You can also create a circle by sewing the end seams together as shown in method 1 and 2

 

Step Three: Press and Pin

  • Press the seam towards the bottom
  • Fold up at center seam; this should naturally fall above the stitch line
  • Press and pin in place

 

Step Four: Finishing

  • Top stitch 1/8th inch on top of the binding on the right side of the dress

TIP: Increasing the stitch length to create a longer stitch will give the garment a more professional look

 

 

Bonus Head Band!

Remember the tie tutorial from the other day? Well, all you have to do is slip it on a headband and your little girl has a super cute bow headband. Depending on how thick the headband is, you might need to make the center tighter by sewing a ½ inch seam allowance instead of a ¼ inch.

 

You could also attach it to various clips! I would add a touch of hot glue to the top of the clip to secure it. Amelia only wanted them on the headband, so I just fed the clip through to demonstrate; which actually worked just fine in my hair!

 

Hopefully this tutorial has inspired you to sew something pretty for your little one! To get you started, Shelly & Daniela will be giving away a free PDF pattern of the Ofelia dress to one lucky winner!!!  Perfect timing for this Holiday season.

Just leave a comment on this post to enter. It would be great to hear what you are working on now or what you’d like to work on soon! For an extra entry follow us on Facebook or Pintrest!  Please also make sure your email is in the comment or is linked to your comment! A winner will be chosen by random on Monday!