Saturday, July 4, 2009

How to Make a Square Petticoat

Measurements and Materials needed :
Measure from your waist to the floor (or ankle depending on personal preference.). Add on 6 inches (safety addition). Multiply this by two if this is for underneath a hoop or farthingale, or by three if it's for over. Add 1/2 a yard. This is the amount of fabric you will need for your petticoat. You will also need some hooks and bars, snaps, or buttons, and enough interfacing for the waist band.

Advantages :
Square petticoats are absurdly simple to make and they don't take that much fabric. If used for an outer skirt, it gives a really pretty effect at the waistband with all the gathers.

Disadvantages :
These sorts of petticoats tend to be a bit bulky. Too many of these under a gown can add unwanted bulk to the waist, even with your corset on.

Instructions :

To figure how much fabric you'll need, measure from your waist to the floor and add and inch. Double this number (under hoop) or triple this number (over hoop), add six inches (waistband) and divide by 36. This will give you the amount of fabric you'll need in yards. If the fabric you're buying is less than 36" wide, take the waist to floor measurement and multiply by four, add six, and divide by 36.
When you have the fabric, take the waist to floor measurement and cut two rectangular panels of fabric that are this length. Use the entire width of the fabric. If you have a fabric less than 36" wide, cut three panels.
Sew your panels together at the sides, meaning the uncut edges, leaving one of the seams open about 6" at the top. Hem the bottom edge. Along the top edge, run a gathering stitch all the way around, stopping about 1 1/2 inches from either side of the opening. Next, cut out your waistband. If you need a pattern for this, go ahead and use it. Patterns will usually give you instructions on making tabs as well.
If you aren't using a pattern, measure your waist and add about 5". Cut out a strip of fabric this long, and about 4" wide. Fit it at your waist and mark with tailor's chalk. Make sure that there is enough fabric left on either side to be able to turn it under and give it a clean edge. Turn under the edges of the waistband twice and stitch down.
Pin your skirt to the waistline and try it on. If it fits well, sew them together. If not, refit.
Make the tab, add the hooks and eyes, and voila!

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