Seam Finishes – Hong Kong or Bound Seam

I’ve been working on another version of Butterick 9563 and am using this technique on all the seams and raw edges.  It’s a fabulous method to use on unlined jackets and works well on trousers and skirts too.  It’s best suited to medium to heavy weight fabrics.  The binding consists of bias strips, either shop bought or self cut.  The opportunities to play with colour and print here are endless.  You can introduce an interesting colour play or bring some pattern in with a floral, stripe or check binding on a solid colour garment.  If you’re going to use this technique, bind each seam allowance as you sew the seam.  Waiting until you have loads to do isn’t always a good idea as the bulk of the fabric/garment can really get in the way.  Also, make sure you have more than you think you’ll need!  I used 12m on one knee length dress earlier this year!!

If you’re cutting your own bias strips, make them 3-3.5cm wide.  You can always cut off the excess but there’s nothing worse than the binding being too narrow to be caught by your stitching.

Start by sewing your usual 1.5cm seam.  Press the seam open and lay the bias strip right side down on the seam allowance, raw edge to the edge of the seam allowance.  Stitch either in the prefolded ditch, or 5mm from the edge of the allowance.

Step 1, sew the binding strip to the seam allawance, 5mm from the raw edge, or in the prefolded ditch

Step 1, sew the binding strip to the seam allowance, 5mm from the raw edge, or in the prefolded ditch

Press the binding strip away from the seam line, over the raw edge.

Step 2, Press the binding.

Step 2, Press the binding.

Now wrap the binding around the raw edge, press & pin in place.

Step 3, wrap the binding over the edge, press & pin.

Step 3, wrap the binding over the edge, press & pin.

Stitch in the ditch – that is to say, with the needle right up against, but not on, the binding.  If you have an edgestitch foot this will be easier to do, but keep the needle in the centred position and stitch slowly, that way you have more control.

Step 4.  Stitch in the ditch

Step 4. Stitch in the ditch

If you have used a binding that is a little wide, now is the time to turn the seam over & trim off the excess.

Finished!

Finished!

Have fun playing with different colours & prints with your Hong Kong finish, I’ll be showing you the finished jacket in a day or so.

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