HomeDecTech: Matching Fabric Patterns with Iron-On Adhesive Tape

What is HomeDecTech?

HomeDecTech is a series of how-to sewing lessons from my workroom.  These simple techniques will help you create window treatments, bedding, pillows and other decorating projects with quality and efficiency.

The first HomeDecTech lesson is about matching fabric pattern motifs, a detail that sets custom work apart from lesser quality products.  In this tutorial you will learn an easy way to create perfectly matched seams.  This is not the only way to achieve a pattern match, and there are times when you don’t want to use adhesives.  I will show other methods for matching patterns, and seaming fabrics, in future HomeDecTech lessons.

For this method you will need an iron-on adhesive tape.  I am using Heat-n-Bond® iron-on adhesive, but there are many other brands available at your local sewing shop or favorite resource.  Test your fabric first, to make sure  a hot iron can be used without harming the fabric.  Follow the product instructions for heat settings.  I am using a 3/8 inch bonding tape but 1/4 or 1/2 inch tape could also be used.


Begin with the fabric pieces face up, side by side with the design going in the same direction. Often fabrics have a small arrow as a directional but on this fabric it is very obvious that the trees, people and building are facing up


With one piece of fabric on top of the other, fold under the selvage edge and find the match


Using the fold as a guide, iron a crease down the selvage of the fabric


Add iron-on adhesive bonding tape to the very edge of the fold. Make sure to use tape that has a paper backing and iron it to the fabric with the paper side facing up.


Let the tape cool and then peel off the paper backing


Place the fabric, with the adhesive tape folded under, face-up on top of the other piece of fabric.  Line up the pattern for a perfect match and then iron, setting the adhesive tape and joining the two pieces of fabric together


Stitch along the crease on the reverse side, sewing the two pieces together


Cut away excess fabric along the selvage at the size you need for your project. Usually a 1/2 inch seam allowance is used in home dec sewing projects.  If the fabric frays, you can use an overlock stitch along the edge.


Press the seam evenly to one side


All matched and ready to be sewn into a fabulous home dec project!


I hope this technique will help you on your next sewing project.  Look for more HomeDecTech lessons soon!

Best Wishes,





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  1. Amy at Nov 20, 2013 11:35:30

    Hi Susan! Could you tell me which iron on adhesive you used? Is it a Rowley product? Thank you!

  2. HomeDecGal at Nov 21, 2013 12:34:43

    Hello Amy,
    In this tutorial I used Heat-n-Bond® iron-on adhesive, but any other brand would work including Rowley tapes. Just be sure to use a tape with the paper backing.
    Thanks for viewing my blog!

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