Readers Request: Stretch bias finish


What is stretch bias? Not to be confused with FOE (fold over elastic). Stretch bias biding is a narrow strip of stretch fabric cut crosswise. You can find this item pre-made (ready to use) or you can make your own using the same fabric of the main garment.

To finish a garment with ‘stretch bias’ is very easy. It is exactly like sewing a woven bias biding. I already demonstrated a step by step visible bias application which use a double folded bias tape.

For a invisible finish like the wren or the ultimate wrap dress you will need a single fold bias. Victory Patterns has a lovely tutorial encompassing the different woven bias application. Just remember you don’t need to stretch it, ok. Just threat it like a woven bias. Next wrap dress that doesn’t have a facing I will take step-by-step pictures and update this post for a more comprehensive explanation.

Ps: Cutting Class always have interesting takes on a topic, bias binding inclusive.


The stretch bias pictured above is from Minerva Craft. For the wren dress I have made my own bias.

  • Awesome! But why not stretch it? Wouldn’t that help keep a neckline from gaping?

    • Hello there. Let’s start by clarifying this as a finish, therefore it will follow the already in-built design of the main piece. Patterns like the appletown & the rachel wrap dress uses bands and they are often smaller. The bands are actually acting as an anti-gape mechanism. This are two different things using the ‘same material’ therefore different nomenclature: Bands and bias finish. If you stretch the bias finish you would be distorting the neckline while stretching is the correct way to attach a band. Make sense?

  • Question: what if you were making bias out of knit fabric? Would you still cut that on the bias?

    • Hi Manju, As I mention on my knits on woven patterns post; Knits don’t have selvages, instead of a lengthwise and crosswise grain they have lengthwise loops and crosswise rows of loops. And similar to woven fabrics they stretch more in one direction. While wovens have the greatest amount of stretch on the bias knits are stretchier crosswise. So thats why you wouldn’t cut on the bias.

  • I like the idea of making knit bias binding, would I make it the same way I do with woven fabric? I use a bias binder maker and an iron would this distort the fabric?
    BTY- Love your finished coat, it has inspired me so o make my own winter coat and I am enjoying searching for the ideal fabric & pattern.

  • Sarah

    Hmm, maybe “binding for stretch fabric” or “knit binding” would be a better name for this, given that, if I understand rightly, it’s not actually cut on the bias.

  • PsychicKathleen

    This was a such a helpful entry – I’ve been thinking about it for a while. It’s true that sometimes you don’t want to actually change the neckline or armhole you just need a finish and I really like this one! So simple and elegant.