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Sewing bias tape with a SCHMETZ twin needle


Yesterday on QUILTsocial I shared 5 tips for making fusible bias tape with tools from Heirloom and HeatnBond. We used our black fabric to make our own bias tape strips with the help of HEIRLOOM Bias Tape Maker – 6mm (¼”).

Today using SCHMETZ Twin Needle Carded – 80/12 – 4.0mm we’ll sew all the bias tape pieces in place. These needles are flexible enough to work around curves.


A 80/12 SCHMETZ Twin Needle which will be used for sewing the black bias tape strips into place on the St.Patrick's Day wallhanging.
SCHMETZ Twin Needle Carded – 80/12


The last thing we did yesterday was to fuse the sticky side of the iron-on adhesive tape to the fabric bias tape. Today we’ll fuse the bias tape to the quilt top, and then we’ll use the twin needle to secure them to the wallhanging.

Before you start, take the long bias strip that was cut on a 45° angle and set it aside for later.

The first pieces of bias tape that we’ll place on the quilt top are the shortest pieces. Using the following picture as a reference, measure and cut the small pieces needed from two of the bias tape strips that were cut on the straight grain of fabric.

Once you have 15 short pieces placed on the quilt top as in the photo below, place the hot iron directly on top of each piece, leaving the iron in place for 3 to 4 seconds. This will be just long enough for the adhesive tape to fuse to the quilt top.


The smallest pieces of bias tape are placed first on the quilt and then ironed into place.
Placement of the small pieces of bias tape


Stitching the bias tape

Switch to the SCHMETZ twin needle on your sewing machine along with an appropriately sized presser foot for a twin needle as per your machine’s instructions.

You’ll need two spools of black thread. When threading your machine, thread one spool at a time making sure one thread is on one side of the tension disk and that the other thread is on the other side. Consult your sewing machine’s manual to see the best way to do this with your machine.

When you’re set up, center the presser foot directly over the first bias strip section you wish to secure.


A SCHMETZ twin Needle is use to sew the black strips of bias tape to the shamrock quilt top.
Using a SCHMETZ Twin Needle 80/12 to securely attach the bias strips


You may want to do a couple of back stitches at the beginning and end of each bias tape piece.

Once you’ve finished stitching down the smaller bias tape pieces you can move on to the shamrock centerpiece.

For this step you’ll need that long piece of bias tape that you put aside earlier. Because this fabric was cut on the bias it will be easier to bend around the curves of the shamrock.

Start by placing the end of the long strip of bias tape on the center of the shamrock as shown in the photo below. Press that end in place with the hot iron.

As you continue to place the bias tape following the curves of the shape, press down with your iron every inch or so, more often when you are going around a curve.


The end of a length of bias tape is placed at the center of the shamrock and then curved along the edge of one of the clover leaves.
Place the long bias tape strip along the edge of the shamrock, starting in the center.


As you cross the center of the shamrock again, don’t fuse that section of bias tape to the quilt top. You’ll need to hide the other end of the bias tape strip under the intersection where the bias tape strip ends meet. Once the end is tucked under you can then fuse the center.


The black bias tape curves along the edge of two of the clover leaves and the raw end is tucked under another section of bias tape before it is fused with the iron.
Hiding the end of the bias tape strip underneath the bias strip.


Now we head back to the sewing machine to secure this bias tape strip to the quilt top as you did earlier with the smaller pieces.

Once this step is completed, the next step is to use the rest of that long piece of bias tape to go around the sides of the stem and the third clover leaf.

As you’ll see in the next picture, I started at the bottom of the shamrock’s tail going up and around the top of the shamrock then down again. Fuse it all into place as before then sew to secure.


Another length of bias tape was used to finish outlining the the remainder of the shamrock.
Placing of the bias tape around the rest of the shamrock.


You should now have four more grain wise strips of bias tape left over. Place and fuse these strips onto your quilt top as shown in the next photo then sew them into place.


The four remaining lengths of bias tape are place on the inner edges of the four borders of the shamrock wallhanging.
Adding the last four strips of bias tape to complete the stained glass quilt top.


You’ve now finished the shamrock stained glass quilt top!  The only thing left to do is to baste, quilt and bind! St. Patrick’s Day is still a few days away but you still have time to finish it.

Special note:

In 2012 I completed a Crossword puzzle quilt that has more bias tape sewn onto it than I care to remember. To complete the quilt I used SCHMETZ Twin Needle 80/12 and I’m glad I did since it made the project so much easier and quicker to complete. I would do it all over again; as long as I had my twin needles.


A crossword puzzle quilt with red bias tape around each letter of the puzzle, made with SCHMETZ Twin Needle 80/12.
Crossword puzzle quilt made with bias tape and sewn with SCHMETZ Twin Needle 80/12


Tomorrow I’ll do another easy quilt project using another HEATNBOND® product which will help you to make multiple applique pieces at once.


This is part 3 of 5 in this series.
Go back to part 2: 5 tips for making fusible bias tape with tools from Heirloom and HeatnBond

Go to part 4: Time saving applique method using HeatnBond EZ-Print Lite

I took my first quilting course in September 1994 in Barrie, Ontario, near the armed forces base where I was stationed. After moving to Ottawa in 1996, I joined my first guild. I took more courses and began to buy quilting books and lots of fabrics. Quilting has become my passion. I have made over 150 more quilts since then, and have never looked back. I now share my knowledge of quilting by teaching and doing presentations, and blogging!


  1. Lori Smanski

    this is a great tutorial. thanks for sharing

  2. Kathy

    Sewing bias tape with a double needle is such a great idea!

  3. Michele Fetter

    I am anxious to try the shamrock now with the bias tape. I can hardly wait to use the twin needle too.

  4. Linda H

    Thanks for sharing.

  5. Catherine Brown

    I’ve been thinking of doing this, this project is so pretty.

  6. Calvin F.

    Such complex work. That’s a lot of time and effort you put in to make that huge crossword 😛

    Thanks for sharing this wonderful knowledge.

  7. Delaine

    I love this idea of using a double needle. What a time saver! Thanks!

  8. Tamara Isaacs-Smith

    Nice tutorial, I am going to have to try this for myself.

  9. Sandy Allen

    I bought a “UFO” project that is a stained glass quilt. Now I know how to finish it up!

    Thanks for the great tutorials!

  10. Elizabeth Matthiesen

    A great series of tutorials, I’ve never done this and wouldn’t attempt it without a tutorial like this. Thank you so much.

  11. Anna lutz brown

    Very usefull ty for sharing.

  12. Peggy

    Thanks for the great tutorial!

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