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I'm currently making a wool cape for the upcoming winter. The pattern recommends to finish the edges with a leather binding, and I have opted to do so. My main problem is that I know you're not supposed to use pins for leather as it leaves marks, and I don't have many bulldog clips. Plus, I did try one edge and it was the most stressful thing as once i took a clip off to sew a section, I would have to push the binding over the wool, resulting in some missed sections where I sewed the binding together without the wool. Are there any techniques that make this process any easier?

  • Would you consider a secondary step? Something like using a bead of leather glue to tack it in place until you can get the sewing done? – Catija Aug 17 '16 at 22:31
  • @Catija How would that work exactly? I've never heard of leather glue. I'm relatively new to sewing, having only taken it up in earnest after my GCSE exams finished earlier this year. – Gladiator Kittens Aug 17 '16 at 22:34
  • I don't know, actually. I was curious after reading your question and my first thought was some sort of tack (like glue)... and I found an "instructables" about gluing leather before sewing to hold it in place. instructables.com/id/how-to-glue-leather-for-sewing It's sort of an issue of blind-leading-blind as I'm no expert, either... but it might be something to consider. I'm not sure how well it will work with leather on one side and fabric on the other, though... and I'd hate to ruin your fabric, so you'd at least want to test it first. – Catija Aug 17 '16 at 22:36
  • @Catija I have fabric to spare, my mum bought me 5 meters of the stuff and I like to cut efficiently! Plus there would be leather on both sides of the fabric rather than just leather to fabric, it would be leather to fabric to leather – Gladiator Kittens Aug 17 '16 at 22:39
  • You can't leave the clips on and sew? Trying to visualize this. If clips away from stitch line enough to clear the needle, you could leave them on? Are you hand sewing or machine sewing? – user24 Aug 17 '16 at 23:16
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IF your machine is capable, you can't buy the Wonder Clips -which i also recommend, and you haven't stocked up on these items already... Do so! It will all make a difference.. Figure out what clips work best for you.

  • Leather Needles
  • Required thread
  • Double sided leather tape
  • Large Paper Clips
  • Clothespins (wooden or plastic - just make sure they are strong)
  • Research, research, research
  • ALWAYS Practice on scraps beforehand.

Do your best not to stretch the leather as your sewing it. Also, you can pin in a few spots where you'll be sewing, if you must. Just hand feed very slowly while removing the pins. Apparently the leather tape causes less needle gum up.

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  • I have got myself a box of the clips and they are significantly easier to use for holding the tape in place. I like to think my sewing machine is decent, it was my mum's and was one of the first computerised sewing machines (but it's older than I am). The extra advice on how to feed the tape into the machine was very useful. – Gladiator Kittens Aug 31 '16 at 12:16
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In quilting a binding, we use Clover Wonder clips. These just hold the binding in place and you sew up to the clip and then remove the clip and then keep sewing.

A product description explains why they would excel in sewing applications

Clip and hold, Clip and Sew right where you need it! Great Holding capacity for different types of crafts. Wonder Clips have a wide opening for holding multiple layers of fabric. It won't damage or distort the fabric. Wonder Clip base is flat for easy feeding to presser foot with 1/4" and 1/2" seam allowance markings on the base.

Product description from Clover USA

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  • These look a lot easier to use than bulldog clips, are they better at preventing the fabric from slipping out of the binding? – Gladiator Kittens Aug 18 '16 at 19:07
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    Welcome! To help your answer a bit, could you explain what makes these clips better/different than the ones that the OP is already using and how they're used? – Catija Aug 18 '16 at 20:48

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