Monday, 24 October 2011

Tape Maker: My favourite gadget

I want to sing the praises of Tape Makers. They take all of the fiddle out of making (bias) binding.
These handy little gadgets can save your fingers from the perils of the iron! I own 3 different sizes, from 50mm to 18mm, and I use them all the time.
The instructions that come with the tape maker will tell you how wide you need to cut your fabric for each size. Just in case you've mislaid your instructions, here is a reminder:
6mm tape = 13mm fabric
12mm tape = 25mm fabric
18mm tape = 36mm fabric
25mm tape = 48mm fabric
50mm tape = 96mm fabric

The only tricky part is getting them threaded in the first place, but I've discovered that if you cut a bit of taper into the end of the fabric strip, it makes it simple. You just feed the end of fabric in, and use a pin to help work it through, if needed.
Once you have some fabric appearing out from the other end, pull a little through, so that you are past the tapered section.
You then pull the tape maker along, and press the tape with your iron as it comes out the end. You can really get some speed going with this handy gizmo!
Fabric to tape in a jiffy!!
I love this shot of my long strip of fabric in the foreground, with the newly made tape in the background.
I used 10 jelly roll strips, trimmed to size, and this made binding for all 3 of the quilts in my jelly roll post. Once the strips were sewn together, it took maybe 5 minutes in total to turn them all into tape. Gone are the days of burnt fingers!
And voila! A whole roll of finished tape. I'd better get on with quilting those crib quilts hadn't I?

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