Singer Bias Binder Gauge

This has been on the end of my wanted list for some time; one of those little items which, while I won’t bust a gut to obtain one I would be happy to try out just to satisfy my curiosity.

It wasn’t an auspicious start as it was a little bit bent and I first had to fiddle about a little with a screwdriver and a pair of pliers to open the fold sufficiently to admit the tip of any scissors I possess.

I’d better explain.  The bias gauge is a tiny device fashioned from a narrow piece of doubled-over steel which ends in a splayed section which is bent to form a slot into which fits the end of the bottom blade of a pair of scissors.  The final piece is a tiny piece of blued steel which acts as a ‘stop’ which may be slid up the length of the gauge, controlling the width of the cut fabric. There are three markings on the gauge: F, B & C, marking the suggested widths for using as Facings, Bindings and Cording/Piping.

If you’re having trouble following this, I promise that photos will follow eventually but it’s been snowy today and I much prefer snow to fiddling around in Photoshop®

Well the first problem I encountered was, as I mentioned, to get the gauge to fit onto the end of my scissors.  Modern scissors are very much thicker in the blade than older ones but luckily I had a pair of vintage ones which fitted ok.  It did, however, keep flicking off which was a bit of a pain, and if I jammed it on harder it interfered with the scissors closing properly.

All became simpler when I realised that the error was born of my own bad habit of cutting small items up off the table instead of flat upon it and as soon as I placed the fabric back down upon the table and cut the strip with the blade (and the bottom of the attachment) resting upon the table, all was well and the strip was cut with ease.

The gauge is a quick and accurate method of cutting bindings and I recommend it.  Just be sure that you have some fairly narrow bladed shears or be prepared to jemmy the gauge open a little.

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