Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Piping Tutorial

I am finally back to working on my project. As you know, I finished up my smocked panel, in which I began with the borders and back smocking. I continued by working on the picture smocking figures and finally completed the smocked panel, Under the Sea.  I am now ready to construct! I decided that I would give you a tutorial on piping, as I construct my pattern! I know that some people have trouble when it comes to lining up your piping evenly with your smocking, so I hope you find this tutorial helpful.
I like to make my own piping, rather than store-purchased piping, one reason being that I can choose my own fabric. I am using baby cord that I purchased from the Martha Pullen Co. I had not planned to use yellow piping until I saw this yellow printed fabric on my cutting table and it coordinated perfectly with my smocked panel! I began by cutting a bias strip 1" wide - I cut it long enough to be able to make two pieces of piping for above and below my smocked insert.
Place the piping cording to the wrong side of the bias strip on the center.
 Fold fabric over the piping cording and begin stitching.
I am using a zipper foot and I set my needle position 2 dots in from the left side.
Stitch the entire length of the bias strip
When completed, it should look like this
Next step is to sew the piping to the yoke front. 
Line up cut edge of piping to lower yoke and stitch on the same stitching line. Once you have your piping sewn to your yoke, it's time to attach the smocked insert. If you take a little time in this step, you should be able to get a perfect placement of your piping to the top row of your smocked insert.
Line up the top edge of the piping to the top edge of the smocking row. 
Notice the placement of my pins.
Be careful to not pin down the portion of the yoke that is above the piping. 
Pin in and under.
Flip back the yoke and stitch piping to smocked insert. I set my needle to the 1st dot to the left, so that my new stitching line will fall just to the outside of the previous stitching line.
 Remove pins as you stitch to them.
When completed, it should look like this! As you can see, my piping 
lines up evenly with my top row of smocking.
For added neatness, I serged the seam where my yoke & piping 
was stitched to my smocked insert.
Next step for this pattern is to stitch the lower portion of the front bib to my smocked panel.
Line up the piping to the edge of the panel and stitch in place.
Once again, pin the piped edge to the bottom row of smocking, taking care to pin into the piping and under the fabric to keep it free. Flip the fabric back towards the smocking and stitch in place as you did before, removing pins as you stitch to them. Finish by serging or zig-zag and trim excess fabric away.
Completed smocked insert with piping.
I hope this tutorial is beneficial to you in making piping and lining up your piping to a smocked insert. Next journal entry will be continuing construction on my pattern.


April said...

This is absolutely STUNNING, Laurie!

Esther Grant said...

Perfection at it's best! Love the smocking and the dress fabric too Laurie.

Becky said...

Now, there's no reason I can't do that! You make it seem so easy. I love your pictures and the explanations and can't wait to try it this way. Also can't wait to see your completed outfit.

Marsha said...

Laurie, is that mini piping cord or "regular" piping cord? If regular size, where do you purchase it? I'm having trouble finding it. Thanks!

Rettabug said...

Laurie, this is a great tut! I'm sorry I didn't see it sooner. I can't wait to put it into practice. Thanks for taking the time to take such precise photos.

LAnderson (Southern Stitches) said...

Marsha, this is babycord that I got from the Martha Pullen Co. - I love it!

beedeebabee♥ said...

OMG, now THIS is sewing! I could never in my wildest dreams do anything like this! Beautiful, just beautiful! I'm so happy you found my blog, and I was then able to find yours! xo Paulette ;)

Julia said...

This is something that I have struggled with in the past. The last dress I made that required this skill turned out pretty well, but this tutorial is a great help. Thanks

Ellie said...


janie said...

Love your site and your instruction is great!

Question....what pattern is this? I am looking for a dress or jumper pattern which has a straighter skirt. The full, gathered ones are not practical sometimes. Any suggestions? Thanks!

LAnderson (Southern Stitches) said...

Janie, This is my own original pattern - both the smocking and the garment. I will be offering it for sale as soon as I get it all completed.


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