1,001 Uses for Fashion Tape

Fashion tape in use

OK, OK, I exaggerate. Though perhaps I should keep a running list and eventually publish a book titled 1,001 Uses for Fashion Tape. I could make a fortune, people!

In the meantime, here are a handful of quick and easy uses for fashion tape to tide you over. Don’t go thinking that this invention exists for the sole purpose of preventing celebrity nipple slips. No indeed, double-sided fabric-friendly tape is incredibly versatile and almost infinitely useful, as my hyperbolic post title implies. I keep a little tin on my person at all times and another in my jewelry box at home. It comes in handy approximately once a week, I swear. I’ve seen it sold at Bed, Bath & Beyond on occasion, but I get mine from Amazon. And I buy in bulk.

What exactly can be done with this stylistic life-saver?

Create false lapels on a cardigan: This is what I’m doing an admittedly crappy job of showing you in the photo up top. If you’ve got a crewneck cardigan and would rather that the top flaps sit open, fold them backwards to create the look of false lapels, and tack the little triangles of sweater to the body of the cardigan using fashion tape. This works best if the bottom half of the cardigan is buttoned.

Tack down a button-down shirt collar: Since I generally shun the iron, I get some pretty wacky-looking shirt collars. And since I prefer to wear necklaces with my button-downs, it helps to spread the collar wide. Determine how much of a v-neckline you want to create, and tape the collar to the shirt body.

Keep the end of a belt in place: Oh, I know that tucking your loose, floppy belt-end under the belt itself is all the rage. And I actually adore this look. But it doesn’t work for every style of belt, and it doesn’t look right with every outfit. Fashion tape can be used to tack the loose end of a belt to the body of the belt. I’ll admit that I’m loathe to do this with super supple or expensive belts even though the tactic has never harmed leather, plastic, or cloth … better safe than sorry. But with less dear waist-cinchers? Go for it.

Secure a wrap top: Since I am small-of-boob, anything with a wrap top – be it false or true – just sags sadly about my girls. The wrapping effect itself, however, looks elegant and chic on my torso. So I employ fashion tape to eliminate the gape. My preference is to tape fabric to fabric, but sometimes it’s easier to tape fabric to breastbone. The sensation isn’t uncomfortable so much as odd, and after a few minutes I generally forget the tape is even there.

Make a neckline more modest: Many plunging necklines have some slack fabric around the opening that can be tightened or gathered to decrease the plunge. Fashion tape is often more effective at closing up the neckline than safety pins, since it holds closed a larger area and holds it closed flat.

Temporarily repair a hemline: I thrift. A lot. And occasionally a skirt or dress will begin to unravel at the hem quite unexpectedly. And while the aforementioned safety pins work in a pinch, fashion tape is often more secure and effective. It’s saved me from frayed hems dozens of times!

Seal a button-down shirt: This style of shirt was originally designed for men, so many versions still fight our female forms. Women with large breasts definitely struggle, but even my b-cup bust creates gaping in some styles. One piece of fashion tape between the pulling buttons can work wonders.

Are you a fan of fashion tape? How do YOU use this miracle invention?

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  • http://www.stumbleintostyle.blogspot.com EvaNadine

    just this past friday i used a piece of fashion tape to secure an open cardi to the tank below. i love the pattern running down the front of the tank, but the straps make the top not work-appropriate, so i always wear a cardi over it and tape the open front of the cardi to the tank — that way i can show off the pattern i love on the tank but cover the inappropriate straps and not have to worry about anything moving around throughout the day!

    it is the second look on this post:
    http://stumbleintostyle.blogspot.com/2010/02/first-post-after-prolonged-absence.html

    • Linda

      OK, I’m not a stalker or anything, but I clicked the link to behold your ingenuity and almost fell over when I saw your 2 Skinnee J’s shirt! That’s my boyfriend’s cousin’s band!

  • http://www.stylebeholder.blogspot.com Stacey

    have added fashion tape to my list of “need to get” :)

  • Tricia

    I just bought some because you’ve mentioned it so many times! I have yet to use it, but I bought it specifically for a dress I just bought – I couldn’t pass up an adorable vintage dress, but it has a Peter Pan collar and high necklines look awful on me. It looks fine if I leave the top button or two unbuttoned, but I want the tape to create the “false lapel’ effect you describe.

  • http://www.littlehomesteadinthevalley.blogspot.com Jennifer

    Where exactly do you buy fashion tape?

    • http://www.alreadypretty.com Sal

      There’s a link within the post. You can also try fabric stores.

      • http://www.littlehomesteadinthevalley@blogspot.com Jen

        I’ll have to try a fabric store. Amazon.com doesn’t ship to Canada.

    • Michelle

      TJ Maxx or places like that also have it sometimes.

    • Erin

      Try hairtape.net
      They have all kinds and it’s great and not expensive

  • http://fashionableacademics.blogspot.com Shakespeare’s Feminine Ending

    I’ve never done tape for hem problems–thanks for the advice.

    Also, love you in yellow and teal!

  • http://www.lifeclubs.co.uk Abi

    Necklaces and pendants tend to twist around on me, so I use a tiny amount of it to fix them to my neck or decolletage in an appropriate place. I love fashion tape – I get it on eBay.

  • Colleen

    Ok, definitely have to pick some up. Love the cardigan lapel idea. I am a cardi addict – last count I owned 20 or so; I think I could own 50 and still want more. I wear them at least 4 days a week but sometimes feel like without variation in how they’re styled, it can look uniformish. The more options, the less I look like That Cardigan Lady.

  • http://clothesinteralia.blogspot.com/ gina

    Ha! I performed in a play where one of my costumes was a bathing suit (I wore a dance leotard instead). I taped the bottom to my butt so it wouldn’t ride up on stage.

  • http://www.futurelint.blogspot.com futurelint

    I need to get some actual fashion tape so I have a little tin I can put in my purse. At home I just use double-sided carpet tape because I am ghetto (but it works!) I’ve also used it in the back of strapless dresses, so my strapless bra is stuck to the back of the dress and doesn’t start creeping up and becoming visible!

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  • http://sincemydivorce.com Mandy

    I’ve never used fashion tape :( but after reading this, I have lots of ideas. I do have a few tops that I feel are a little too revealing and I’m constantly adjusting them and now, you’ve given me the solution. Thanks!

  • http://www.thechangingjourney.blogspot.com KimbraSue

    I’ve never used fashion tape, but I think I will need to invest in some!

  • dana

    Hello, sorry to be off topic — Sal, how do Scarpasas fit? I find as a US 8 I’m a Eur 39…but that’s not how their site converts the size, they say US 8 is a 38. Many thanks!

    • http://www.alreadypretty.com Sal

      Oooh, ya know it varies from brand to brand! I’m a US 8 and generally take a Euro 39, too, but the review pair I received I DEFINITELY needed a 38! They have fabulous customer service, so I’d say if you’re in doubt, drop a line. They also include info about fit trueness with each product. (Under “Sizing” in the list of specs.)

  • http://www.joellevandyne.com joelle van dyne

    well i have never before purchased fashion tape, because i always assume it is something that only britney-spears-esque ladies need! but you’ve convinced me, particularly with the ability to hold up the end of a belt, or fix that annoying gap in button down shirts.

  • http://www.dailyjohaiku.blogspot.com Daily Jo Haiku

    I use fashion tape to close off the gap between my shirt buttons around my boobs. I’m of small boob, too, so it’s a mystery why it gapes there in almost every button down I own!

  • http://twobirdsboutique.blogspot.com/ two birds

    must.get.some! i never even thought of half these ideas. thanks!

  • http://www.monster-cakes.blogspot.com Jessica Zigenis

    This. was. fantastic. haha I got fashion tape at a fabric/craft store of all places, but I had no idea it had this many uses! Thanks for all the tips. My A-cup-ladies thank you even more. ; )

  • http://sheilaephemera.blogspot.com/ Sheila

    I think I might need to get some of that stuff for myself! I often have issues with gaping between buttons on blouses and shirts.

  • Clairezilla

    I bought a pair of dress/office pants that are perfect… with three-inch heels.

    Since I also love how they look with flats, I use fabric tape to temporarily ‘hem’ them just for a day. (I even found it held up through three washings before I had to peel it off and re-tape!) Then I can un-hem them for fancy nights with heels.

    It’s also worked wonders on several gaping button-down shirts, and a wrap blouse that you’ll have to pry out of my cold dead hands.

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  • http://polymathdesignlab.com Shannon

    I had a belt that kept shifting, so I stuck it down to the jersey shirt beneath with some fashion tape… but at the end of the day, the adhesive had seemingly fused to the fabric of the shirt and I have still not been able to get it all off/out. Have you ever had this happen? Any tips for fashion-tape adhesive removal? It’s made me far more hesitant about using the stuff…

  • http://sololisa.com lisa

    I use fashion tape to keep certain tops with wide necklines from sliding around my shoulders and off to one side.

  • DarlaCarla

    So many great ideas!! I *hate* those hanging belt ends and sometimes I would just use a paper clip, LOL. Your idea is much more elegant.

  • http://orchidsinbuttonholes.wordpress.com Sara

    This post gets a bookmark so I can find it again. SUCH great information, Sal! I have fashion tape, but I’ve never used it because I’m a bit intimidated by it. Now I feel far less so. I never imagined some of these ways to use it! Thanks again, Sal!

  • http://meganmaedaily.com/ Megan Mae

    I should totally pick some up to stick down Hubby’s butt-pocket flaps XD Hahaha! His cargoes always go wonky after the wash. I don’t mind ironing, but I hate doing it multiple times a week.

  • http://clarekrmiller.digitalnovelists.com Clare

    Holy crap, fashion tape would be so much easier to use for the aforementioned button-gapping than safety pins! OK, must get some now. As a DD girl, securing those gaps is a frequent need. Thanks for the tip!

  • virago

    Yup. Fashion tape has got to go on my next shopping list. I have and love Title 9 Sports’ Dazzle 3/4 Sleeve Dress (http://www.titlenine.com/product/skorts-skirts-dresses/casual-dresses/165205.do?sortby=ourPicks#), but I’ve been using safety pins to keep from displaying my 34Ds to all and sundry. (I’ve gone the cami route, but with this particular dress, that results in too many layers.) And since I’m all for solutions that are cheap, quick and unobtrusive, bring on the fashion tape!

  • Amy

    I have used it underneath spaghetti straps on tanks or dresses, stuck to my shoulders, so there’s no slipping. I’ve also used to to help keep up knee high or thigh high socks or tights. And of course, I’ve used it around my boobs in a gazillion ways.

  • http://dailyclothesfix.blogspot.com/ Emma at Daily Clothes Fix

    Great post – I think I definitely need some of this. Never tried it but with a gaping shirt yesterday it would have been very handy.

  • http://sidewalkchic.com joann, sidewalk chic

    Cool — it’s like sartorial duct tape! I’ve used it to help with hemlines before, but I like your other ideas too. I would definitely snap up a copy of your 1,001 Uses book :)

  • http://cgdn.blogspot.com/ Sophie

    I need some of this tape in my life! Can’t believe i’ve left it so late… Its going to solve so many issues!
    http://cgdn.blogspot.com/

  • http://www.goalgettergurl.com Alyssa

    Well, I’m a fan now! ;) I don’t have my own fashion tape yet. Perhaps one day soon I will invest in it. I think mostly for hem lines. I just need to learn to sew those babies up! ;) What I did want to say though as well? That turquoise and yellow outfit in that pic is SO cute!

  • http://line4line.blogspot.com K-Line

    How have I lived without this stuff?

  • http://rozenrood.blogspot.com/ rosesred

    mmm, I wonder if they sell the stuff on this side of the ocean. I’ve never seen it, but it sure would come in handy for all the times I need a classic white shirt, which I never wear, because they gape. I’ll give a years worth of chocolate cookies to the person who can hand me a shirt (alternative) that actually works in a very formal businesssetting, and doesn’t gape.

  • bbleeker

    I didn’t know this stuff even existed! I’ve ordered some right away – Amazon doesn’t ship to the Netherlands, but I’ve found a site that does: http://www.magicbodyfashion.com.

  • Rachel K

    Fantastic tips – I’ve been struggling with holding down belt ends; it doesn’t look good to loop them with dressier outfits. I will be ordering some right away.

  • Erin

    I use it to tape the girls in when I go out dancing.

  • http://the-new-professional.blogspot.com Angeline

    Great tips! I actually haven’t used fashion tape, but I really want to get some now!

  • http://www.rubybastille.wordpress.com Laura

    Holy cow! I’ve been missing out! Thanks for the suggestions!

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  • http://vickysdailyfashion.blogspot.com Vicky

    Thank you, thank you, thank you for this wonderful post. I have to order mine from Amazon now. I don’t own fashion tapes, but I know I have been missing out. Great post. (Found you from Alterations Needed.)

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  • http://whomovedmybirkin.blogspot.com Cristina

    I used some today! It was a lifesaver!!

  • kenzilisa

    This post was a revelation….thank you, thank you, thank you!!!

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  • Dani

    I use fashion tape when I wear strapless things. It seems so obvious but so many of my friends are surprised when they find out. Don’t ever stick it to your skin. Its super painful to get off. Instead try sticking it to your bra.

    Victoria’s secret sells it in cute and convenient tins.

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  • http://oksani.livejournal.com Oksana

    After reading this post I picked up the double sided tape the next time I saw it. Before, I thought it was for JLo’s type dresses. I now use it for EVERYTHING! Bra straps don’t hang out from my sleeveless dresses, necklaces don’t twists and the pendants are always the right side up, belts stay closed and in place, and shirts don’t gap.
    Awesome, awesome stuff!
    Thank you

  • Sandra

    Ever since I saw this photo, I’ve been obsessed with getting a yellow sweater and yellow beaded necklace. Gorgeous color and shapes.

    I’ve always been afraid of yellow but, as with many other things, you’ve convinced me!

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  • Erin

    I realize this is a very delayed response, but I’m just coming across this lovely post now. For those who have trouble finding fashion tape, OR for those who just want to spend a lot less on it, go to a wig shop and buy toupee tape! It’s the same thing, and it’s wayyyyy cheaper! Love all your ideas. I have used it to tape (ahem) *very* low-rise pants to my hips and to tape bra straps to tank straps, among other things. Thanks for your great blog!

    • Erin

      You can also purchase at hairtape.net
      They have a great selection, discounted prices, and good customer service!

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