How Do I Add Piping: Curvy Sewing Collective Post

September 14, 2015 by Britex Fabrics 0 comments

Hello! I’m Tanya and I blog at Mrs. Hughes. I’m excited to be the first of the Curvy Sewing Collective editors to contribute to the Britex blog. I’m a NorCal girl and Britex is one of my most favorite places to shop!


For this project, I chose this sublime royal purple worsted wool. This fabric is a midweight wool, with a nice drape that works well for the Decades of Style 1930’s Stardust Skirt. I love retro styles, but I’ve never ventured into the 1930’s silhouette as I’ve always found it to be more form-fitting than I’m generally comfortable with. However, I do like to step outside of my self-imposed boundaries occasionally and venture in to new territory, and thus entered this 1930’s skirt.



I was drawn to this pattern as I just loved the godets and the length of the skirt. It screams wool and boots to me and looks like a piece that can easily be incorporated into a more modern wardrobe. I also felt that the godets could stand out even more with contrast piping on the seams, so I made some!




To pipe the godets, I used some scraps of cotton lawn from my “recycle” stash. The godets need to have a lighter fabric if you’re adding piping to them or it will affect the drape. I envisioned adding leather piping to this skirt as leather and wool seem to pair well together, but unfortunately that doesn’t work with this design as it’s too stiff and bulky for the seams on the godets. Instead, I went with a light fabric that accentuates and yet doesn’t alter the design.
Making piping is really simple and when you make it yourself, you can choose cool colors and prints that you won’t find in packaged piping, plus you can use up fabric from your scrap bin!
All you really need for this project is:
• Fabric
• Scissors/Rotary Cutter
• Ruler(s)
• Chalk
• Cording/String/Yarn
• Thread




First, I marked my fabric with my chalk and rulers and drew lines on the bias, before cutting into strips. I made more narrow piping at about 2” wide, but you can adjust the width of the strips to your preference. Note: I used scissors to cut mine, but you’ll get a better edge on yours if you use a rotary cutter. I went back and trimmed mine after I had my piping sewn into the seams.



Second, I sewed my bias strips together just as you would for bias tape and pressed them with my iron.



Next, I took my yarn (or cording – whatever is your preference) and inserted it into the center of my piping, pinning it into place. You could also make flat piping and skip this step.



Lastly, I took my zipper foot and sewed close to the edge of the yarn, keeping the piping in place. And voila! We have self-made piping!
Piping really adds a dramatic effect to this skirt, showing off the design details and it’s super easy to do. I used this gorgeous worsted wool that keeps the godets stable, but yet allows them to drape along the style lines. If you made this skirt with a lighter fabric and are also adding piping to the godets, you might want to add some lightweight interfacing.




I really love working with wool as it’s not only a fantastic fabric to wear, but sewing it is so lovely. The stitches hide in the fabric and it’s so nice to cut out. I pressed open my seams, sewing rayon seam binding to the edges of seam allowance and hand sewing catch stitches on the hem. This skirt also has a lapped zipper and binding for the waistband. What a dream to make! Tip: A wooden clapper, really helps when you’re pressing wool, as those pesky darts and hems need a little assistance to lay down. I bought mine at Britex, and they can be found on the notions floor.



I’m looking forward to this skirt being a staple in my fall/winter wardrobe and hope that we get a lot of cool weather and precipitation this year in California so I can wear more of my wool garments! Come on El Nino!


Thank you, Britex, for the fabric and materials! And also, thank you to Decades of Style for the pattern!