Everything you want to know about Seam Binding

by Julie Hyde on August 01, 2021

'So Let's Talk' Seam Binding 

 Our new monthly set of posts focusing on a particular product or technique


The Let’s Talk’ discussion this month is all about Seam Binding and includes 12 unique ways of using Seam Binding on your projects, as well as ways to colour seam binding.

So what exactly is Seam Binding? 

Seam binding is a feather light rayon ribbon and has as a soft silky sheen. Take a look inside some of your nicer pants and skirts, you will often see a rich looking ribbon covering the hem allowance edge.  Seam Binding is probably the ribbon you see.  This ribbon is 100% Rayon, has a satin finish his 100%  with woven edges which will not ravel.

It's great for scrapbooking, card making, and all your crafting needs. It gives a great vintage look to your projects and it comes in a stack  of colors. My favourite colour is white and that's because I can colour the ribbon so it matches perfectly with the colour of my projects.  The ribbon will take on the colour beautifully and you can also dry it so it has a smooth or crinkly appearance.

How to colour Seam Binding.

  • Method #1 - Start by scrunching up the ribbon and tying it in a ball with a rubber band.  Next drop a teabag in some cold water, let stand for 10 mins and pop in your seam binding. You can also substitue coffee for the tea. Leave it for an hour or so. (the longer you leave it the darker the colour), remove from the water and squeeze the excess water out. Leave to dry overnight. Remover the elastic band and you will be left with a soft crinkly ribbon. (Note - It will stay in the same form that you give it when it’s damp).

  • Method # 2 - Scrunch the ribbon into a ball. Hold between your fingers and spray colour spray onto the ribbon. Heidi Swapp Colour Shine works fine. Unravel and then scrunch into a ball again. Continue spraying until you have the colour you desire.

  • Method #3 -  Grab one your ink pads and swipe directly onto the ribbon, then spritz the ribbon with water and squish it around in your fingers. (Don't like getting your hands inky)? you might want to wear gloves.
    Squish around a few times until you have the colour blended the way you like. While the ribbon is still damp,  tie it and shape it, then let it dry. . I've used chalk inks on this piece, but you could use any other ink that's water soluble with this method.

  • Method #4 - Drop a few drops of your reinkers into a wet dish, (make sure your using compatible colours) then drop the ribbon into them and gently move around until the colors look blended. If you like a few  different colours then this technique will give you that.

13 Ideas for Using Seam Binding

1. Use a hole-puncher to punch two holes on your page and insert the seam binding ribbon from the back through the holes and tie a knot at the front. If you have an eyelet-setter, you can create eyelets and weave your ribbon through the eyelets.

2. Hang little embellishments like charms off your ribbons.

3. Sew beads and charms along the length of the ribbon

4. Tie your embellishments to your layout with ribbons. 

5. Frame your photos with the ribbon, or use strips of ribbons to frame around the focal point in your photo to make it even more outstanding.

6. Make a messy bow. Tie seam binding your left over fabrie pieces. other pieces of ribbon, burlap strips, and even add wool or twine to them. 

7. Use as a Tag Topper. Punch a hold through the tag and tie off with the seam binding. (See image).

8. Make a crinkly flower by looping ribbons to form the flower petals. Pin together with a brad and then use a cute button as the flower center. (See tutorial here).

9. Use as a tie / enclosure on a mini album, mini book or journal..

10.. String long strands of seam binding ribbon across your page and tape both ends down at the back of your page with double-sided tape or stapler. 

11. Lay down strands of coloured seam binding ribbon with varying lengths, (they must be longer than the length your photo). Then adhere your photo on top of the taped ribbons. Both ends of the ribbon witll peak out from either side of the photo.

12. Create a ruffled affect. Gather the seam binding with a needle and thread and stitch with your sewing machine (or by hand). Use on any project. 

13. Use word stamps and stamp on your ribbon.  Works best on ribbon that has not been crinkled).

How to Adhere Seam Binding

If you wondering how to adhere ribbon to your projects. Here are a few easy solutions.

#1.  You can use a tape runner and Glue Dots to secure your seam binding riboon - you just have to know where to hide them! Use adhesive to attach the vellum to portions you know you will cover with paper or other embellishment.

#2.  Use your Tiny Attacher. Mini staples are a quick and trendy way to secure the edges of your seam binding ribbon to the edges of your paper.

#3.  Use a  glue stick, then cover the glue spots with a strategically placed  embellishment, such as a sticker or button. Note: sometimes this type of glue will show through,  especially if you are using a sheer ribbon.

#4.  Set eyelets or  scrapbook grommets on the edges of your seam binding ribbon. 

#5. Use brads to attach your ribbon to the page. 

#6. Use your sewing machine to stitch the seam binding directly to your layout. Grab your sewing machine and use a simple stitch to attached to your project. 

#7.  Use Spray Adhesive -  is a strong adhesive sold in an aerosol can. The spray adhesive is sprayed out in a mist that allows the user to spread the glue in even and consistent coats. Using spray adhesive allows you to cover a variety of adhesive applications.

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