Binder comparisons

I was asked about binding tight curves by Shisomama, who is attempting to bind baby bibs with a plate binder. Unfortunately, it is extremely difficult (if not impossible!) to bind tight curves with this type of binding attachment. As you can see here, the binding enters the attachment at about a 45 degree angle and is then straightened out well before it gets under the needle. This type of binder is best for straight or slightly curved work.


Then we have the right-angle binder which works very well on tight curves and rounded corners. The fabric enters the binder at a 90 degree angle and does not straighten out until just before it goes under the needle. This type of binder is attached to a commercial needle plate (which fits most single-needle machines). It also requires a special feeder and foot. This particular set came with a standard binding foot (on the left) and a compensating foot (right).




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7 responses to “Binder comparisons

  1. Colleen P.

    Gigi, do you have a preferred source for these feet, and can you throw out a dollar figure (just a ballpark, I know things cost more or less in different areas of the country and from different sources) on how much all of the required pieces would cost?

    • Colleen, the plate binders generally run $30-$50 and the right-angle binder sets complete (binder, feet, feeder) would run $50-$80. I order them from Superior Sewing Supplies through my friend’s shop but any industrial machine shop would have them. Online, you might try Sharp Sewing on Ebay.

  2. Colleen P.

    Thanks Gigi!

  3. Oh I love these things, and you’re right the top binder contraption does not work well on sharp corners, nor does it work well over bias seams in the binding. I usually just skip over it, and then sew it by hand, but then I like hand work. Loved your description and explanation of this equipment.

  4. Thanks for the visual! Oh, all that wasted time trying to make it work!! I knew there was something not right about the set-up. I wish they made a right-angle binder for my Bernina. I was so pleased with my machine, now I’m going to start coveting an industrial machine.

  5. I really want a binder plate now…I hope that my vintage industrial can be fitted for one.

  6. Nina

    Hi Gigi, I found your super useful tutorial about binder here : and Mary Beth directed me to your blog πŸ™‚
    May I ask some questions about it ?

    I just got right angle double fold binder and was going to use it to bind a light blanket
    So… the light blanket is just cotton on 1 side and knit jersey fabric on the other side.
    and I’m using the same knit jersey fabric (t-shirt fabric / cotton combed 20s) to bind the blanket.
    Usually I do it all manually, and it takes a long time since the knit fabric curls, so I got myself a binder.
    (binder fabric width 3″, double folded into 3/4″)
    After I used the binder, the blanket resulted a bit puckered,
    I think the knit fabric binder got stretched when pulled through the funnel and when sewn onto the blanket, it causes puckering.
    and problem no. 2, sometimes it won’t sew the binder fabric when swing rounded corners.
    The guy who sold me the binder said it should work with knit jersey fabric, and when I saw your photos of the binder, it binds flat and nice and i’m guessing your polyester ribbed sweater knit fabric must be way stretchier than a t-shirt fabric.
    So I just don’t know what’s wrong with mine and I’m kinda frustrated lol.
    Please let me know what you think or I can email you a pic of my binder if you’re interested in checking it out πŸ™‚
    Thanx thanx thanx πŸ˜€