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How to Sew Ribbon on Fabric

Updated April 17, 2017

Sewing ribbon onto fabric is a way to enrich the style. Fabric ribbon of any kind can be used, including taffeta, grosgrain, satin, double-faced satin, or sheer mesh. Two pieces of ribbon can be tacked to the fabric to create ends that can be tied into a bow or a piece of ribbon can be sewn to fabric in a design to embellish the fabric. The ribbon can be stitched by hand or by machine for bigger projects.

Fold the ribbon edge back 1/2 inch towards the wrong side of the ribbon.

Sew the folded piece to the ribbon 1/4 inch from the folded edge of the fabric using a running stitch. A running stitch is a stitch where the needle is inserted through the top of the fabric, then through the back about 1/4 inch away, parallel to the fabric edge.

Use the chalk to mark where the ribbon is going on the fabric.

Fold the ribbon edge another 1/2 inch inward, encasing the previous fold in the new fold.

Stitch down the ribbon to the fabric at the fold edge and 3/8 inch from the fold line, stitching the folded piece down. You are making two rows of stitches.

Repeat the steps with the other side of the fabric, and tie the ribbon edges together to form a bow.

If you are making a design with ribbon, pin the ribbon in place on the fabric and stitch down the centre of the ribbon, lengthwise to secure it to the fabric.

Things You'll Need

  • Hand-sewing needle
  • Thread
  • Pins
  • Chalk
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About the Author

Heather Berkowe is a fashion designer with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in fashion design. She has more than five years of experience in the fashion industry, including design work for lingerie brands and owning the inner-wear company Soussuits. Berkowe has been writing since 1997, with work appearing in the "Journal News" and Metropolitan Museum of Art exhibitions.