Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Fabric Headband Tutorial

I recently came across a few headband tutorials on Pinterest and I found each one to be not very good. Either the pattern was weird, the instructions were off or the sewing in the photographs was really horrible. I thought I could do a better job, so I went to my studio and quickly sketched out a pattern and some notes. My first head band came out really well and the next thing I knew I was pumping out quite a few of them. They take very little fabric, so they are a great thing to make with all those leftover scraps from my quilts and handbags.

Now I have some great headbands to go with all kinds of outfits! And they are going to make a nice little item to sell at a craft fair!

So here is my version of a headband tutorial. Let's hope you find it better than some others you may have come across!

1 - 5" piece of 1/4" elastic
1 - 15-1/2 x 4-1/2" piece of fabric
1 - 11" x 1-1/2" piece of fabric
Coordinating thread

1. Press both pieces of fabric in half, right sides together. 

2. Stitch the long ends together, leaving the bottom ends open for turning. Use 1/4" seams on larger band and 1/8" seams on smaller band.

3. On large band only, press open the seams flat.

4. Turn both bands right side out. I do this using a safety pin on one end then feed it through. There are special tools out there for this, but I find a safety pin to be just as effective.

5. Once turned, press both pieces flat. On the larger band, make sure the seam is running down the middle. This defines your underside and helps center the elastic strap in the later steps. At this point I also pink the raw edges. I hate fraying fabric.

6. Now run a top stitch around the entire large band. I run mine about 1/4" from the edge. This also helps me secure my label to the underside. At this point, do not worry about the raw edges on the ends, they will be taken care of on the last step!

7. Next, feed your elastic through the small band. Again, I use a safety pin on the end. Feed it in just enough so the end without the pin aligns with the fabric. Sew two or three stitches forward and back to secure one end of the elastic.

8. Once the elastic has been pulled through, remove safety pin and secure with 2 or 3 stitches as you did on the other end. I then tug on both ends to even out the scrunching of the fabric. Your finished small band should look like this.

9. Ok, we are almost done. Now we attach the small band to the large one. On the large band, working with the backside facing up, fold over one end about 1/4". Press if you need to. I usually don't.

10. Take the small band and lay it on the folded raw edge, taking care to center on the seam line. Fold one corner of the large band over the small band, then fold the remaining corner over. This is usually too thick to pin, so I just hold it with my finger to stitch it.

11. I set my machine on the slowest setting and stitch closed. Because of the thickness, it will sometimes get stuck under the presser foot and feed dogs. I use my fingers to help push it through. Be careful not to sew your finger tip!! I stitch it back and forth about three times to be sure it is secure. If you would prefer to hand stitch or use a zig zag stitch, I am sure that would be fine too. Repeat with the other end.

And here you go! An adorable new headband. You could make one for every outfit! Enjoy.

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