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Inlay Weaving

This technique uses a simple weaving style, but instead of weaving a separate piece and sewing it to form a garment, you will be cutting your main fashion fabric to form the "warp".

You can use any fabric, but best results are achieved with a firmly woven cotton (there will be a "raw" look to your piece), or a synthetic suede such as UltraSuede® or FabuLeather®, with no "raveling".


  • Your favorite pattern that has straight simple lines. A vest is easy, but look to see if you have a plain "camp" shirt that would look good with some weaving.
  • Fabric for the garment - plus fabric for the weaving. This can be scraps of fabric that coordinate or contrast your main fabric.
  • Lightweight fusible knit interfacing. (Enough to cover the woven area).
  • Scissors (with a sharp point).
  • Rotary Cutter & Ruler.
  • Water Soluble Marking Pen (chalk marker if using dark fabric).
  • Tacky Glue (Aleene’s Thick Designer recommended).
  • Pencil with eraser tip.
For simplicity’s sake I’ll be showing a vest. Use the technique to apply to any simple garment.

Step 1

Cut your vest fronts and back out of your fashion fabric. Set aside back for now.

Step 2

Determine the colors you will use to weave. Try picking colors that compliment or contrast your vest fabric.


Step 3

With rotary cutter and mat, cut your fabrics for weaving into strips. Cut strips from 1/2" to 1" wide.


Step 4

On the wrong side of your vest front, mark your placement lines for making your "warp".

Lay your ruler along the vest front about 1-1/2" away from the raw edge. Mark along the raw edge using your water soluble pen or chalk marker.

Using the "V" of the neckline as a guide, draw a line 3" away from your first line. You should now have a 3" wide area for weaving.

At each end mark a line 1-1/2" inside the vest raw edge. You should end up with a “box” like the one pictured here.


Step 5

Using your rotary cutter and ruler "strip" your "box" every 1/2".

Start 1/2" away from your placement line, cut a strip 1/2" wide being careful to stop at your end markers.

Start your next line 1/2" away from the last one cut. You should end up with 5 cuts.

Cut all the way to your end marker at the shoulder seam. Carefully cut to the line with sharp pointed scissors or an art knife.

Note: You should NOT have cut the outside lines of the box, these are your placement lines.


Step 6 - Weaving

Beginning at the shoulder edge, start your first strip of color, weaving over and under the base strips.

You always want the ends of your weaving strips to come up on the wrong side. One side of the weaving strip will automatically end up on the wrong side, the other end needs some help.

Remember your placement lines? You are now going to cut one side of that the same width of the strip you just wove. At the end where your strip is sticking out on the right side of your fabric, make a slash along the placement line the width of your weaving strip only.

Tuck the end through the slash and now both ends are on the wrong side. Trim the ends so that they hang over the placement line 1/2". Dab a dot of glue on the ends and tack down to the wrong side of the vest front.


Continue weaving, alternating the strips and weaving over and under the opposite direction of the last strip. Keep in mind you will also be slashing opposite ends of each strip that is woven.

Using the Eraser on your pencil, keep the strips pushed together. You want them to lay flat and straight. The eraser helps grab the strips and move them next to the previous one.

Weave all the way to the bottom of your placement lines. It will gradually taper to nothing. Do not weave past your lines, when you can’t weave in another strip, STOP.

Weave the other vest front in the same manner.



Cut a piece of fusible knit interfacing large enough to cover your weaving. Fuse to the wrong side over the weave work.

From the right side, sew a line of topstitching on either side of the weaving. This will help keep the little "tab ends" from coming un-woven.

You may also want to sew a few random straight lines through the woven area to secure it to the interfacing, and make it more durable during laundering.

Assemble vest as per your pattern’s instructions!


Embossing Velvet | Fake Flatlock | Freezer Paper Stencils | Geometric Bath | Inlay Weaving | Leaf Painting

Random Block Piecing | Reverse Appliqué | Sewing Down Under | Snail Trails | Travertine Walls

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