DIY Fray trim

As you might know from other posts or Instagram, I’ve taken a course in making these cute little jackets and have been on a bit of a kick. In class, I made a basic black version, and did this one for homework.

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I decided I wanted to try something new and make this iteration look just a little bit more Chanel, so I made my own trim. I did a lot of trial and error testing, so I thought I would share what I learned.  It’s super easy, so don’t be daunted!

1. Cut a long strip of fabric. This sounds easy, but is actually the most important step to get right. You need to be very, very precise. I recommend using the grain of your fabric as a guide instead of a ruler to make sure you are cutting very straight. Since you will often use a tweed or bouclé fabric for trim, you should have coloured stripes to act as your guide. If you don’t cut straight, nyou’ll have a harder time sewing straight, which will also make pulling apart your fabric more difficult. It could also cause your trim to be uneven. If you’re going to layer, cut the fabric to go on top a little bit narrower. I recommend using the fabric with the loosest weave or thinnest threads on top to make sure the bottom colour shows through. 

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Tip: test how your fabric frays when you cut in either directed (parallel or perpendicular to the grain). Depending on your fabric, it could change the look of your trim. I realized that the sparkly threads only ran in one direction, I had to cut in the one direction to make sure they were visible when I pulled it apart.

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2. Sew down  the middle. Using a zig zag stitch, sew along the middle of the strip, taking care to sew across the same threads of the fabric.

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3. Start gently pulling out threads. This will make a massive mess, but it will be so fun! Be prepared to sweep multiple times. 

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Tip: Use a seam ripper to coax threads out if your fingernail isn’t precise enough.

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Also, be careful pulling out threads. If you grab the cross threads (ie. The ones you want to stick out,  the “frayed” ones), you could end up with a bald spot!

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4. Layer your trims and sew together, again, using a zig zag. Make way more than you think you need as it’s a pain to realize you’re two inches short (literally ) and have to make all that mess again. Trust me. Also, don’t try to iron your trim – I did at first and ended up with a fuzzy mess.

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I put my trim on pockets, collar and hem. You could literally do about anything you want with this stuff. Go nuts! Have fun!

3 Comments Add yours

  1. Great post, thank you! I have been wondering how this is done! Your jacket and trim look lovely 🙂

    1. Samantha Schmidt says:

      Awe thank you! I almost wish it was cooler so I could wear it more now 🙂

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