Sewing Tips & Tricks: Hong Kong Finish Tutorial

A Hong Kong seam finish has to be one of my all-time favourite seam finishes. This clean finish is a thoughtful detail that adds luxury to unlined or partially lined garments.
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What is a Hong Kong finish?

A Hong Kong finish is a method of binding seams with bias tape. Unlike traditional bound seams, the binding on the wrong side of the seam allowance is left unturned, reducing bulk significantly.

Where is this technique best used?

A Hong Kong finish is most commonly seen in unlined jackets and coats, but can also be used in tailored dresses and skirts. This seam finish works best on garments made from medium to heavy weight fabric.

The Technique

The technique used to create a Hong Kong finish is simple but can be time-consuming. The results are well worth the effort. Full disclosure, it may make you want to walk around with your clothes inside out. You have been warned.
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1) Begin by cutting a few yards (you may require more or less depending on the garment) of 1″ bias tape. I like to prepare all of my bias at once, joining the ends so I have continuous yardage. You can also use pre-made bias tape and press it flat.
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2) Cut a length of your prepared bias to the length of the seam you are finishing, plus an inch or two.
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3) Place the bias and seam allowance right sides together and sew at 1/4″.
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4) Press the bias away from the seam allowance.
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5) Wrap the binding around the edge of the seam allowance to the wrong side and press.
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6) From the right side of the seam allowance, stitch in the ditch, capturing the bias on the wrong side of the seam.
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7) Trim excess bias and repeat on other seams.
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The technique really is that simple! Try using a contrasting color or print to make your finish really pop.