Last quarter I learned how to make spaghetti straps. Spaghetti can be used as straps for a dress or blouse (duh!) or as a tie for a casing and I'm sure for hundreds of other applications. Making sturdy and thick (as in fully stuffed!) 1/4" spaghetti isn't all that hard, but it can be a little tricky to start. It's difficult to fit 1 1/2" of fabric into a 1/4" tube! Making the spaghetti for my bias slip dress was a pain in the butt and required a whole lot of muscle because the tube was seemingly never ending! I used a standard loop turner you can buy pretty much anywhere (Joann's, Hancock, Amazon, etc). It isn't my favorite tool to use for turning all tubes, just spaghetti.
So in my sewing class, my teacher taught us a trick that not all instructors apparently teach, which I found really useful. The trick is essentially making a funnel at the top of the bias tube so the I ended up teaching it to a couple of students in my draping class because we had to make spaghetti again for our sewing sample binder.
So here it goes:
1) Make 2" wide bias tape. There are many tutorials out there. Just make sure your bias tape is 2" wide because you need the extra fabric to "stuff" into the 1/4" tube. Fold and press the bias tape in half.
2) With the cut edges on your left, place the tape on your machine bed with the needle on cut edge about 1/2" down from the top edge.
3) Start stitching (don't forget to backstitch a few stitches) with a regular stitch length diagonally to the folded edge. Stop when you get 1/4" away from the folded edge. You want to make sure the diagonal stitch is gradual and pretty long. You want a substantial funnel shape. This funnel is what allows for an easier turn. Less fabric has to be forced into the tube at first making it easier.
4) Continue to stitch at a 1/4" from the folded edge the rest of the length of the bias tape.
5) Cut off the top of the funnel to the first stitch.
6) So for the next part I don't have pictures. Insert your loop turner into the skinny end of the tube (not the funnel side). Hook the latch end of the loop turner to the top of the funnel. I actually poke a hole in the fabric with the moveable latch because you will be cutting off the funnel part once it is is completely turned. The funnel makes it easier to turn.
7) When you are pulling the fabric, hook the circle end of the loop turner to your sewing machine or some other place and it will be your third hand! A big help!
8) You end up with stuffed spaghetti! You can really do this thinner, but your original bias strip will have to be less wide as well.
If you want to buy a loop turner, here's one on Amazon!
And thanks to my new Followers! Woohoo! I'm totally giving away some fun vintage patterns once I hit 75 followers! It's getting trickier and trickier to figure out who is following me on blogger I think my new followers are:
Andrea, Marta, and Faye of Fayes Sewing Adventure! Love her blog! She makes some really nice garments! My favorite was her Colette Patterns coat! She also just had her blogoversary so go to her site and give her some love.
If I missed anyone, tell me! I'd be happy to give you and your blog a shout-out!