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Tag: pleats

Homework 32: Cockades – red, white and blue

Red, white and blue

Red, white and blue

I was pretty confident that I would be able to come up with some good decoration after my cockade experiment. It seemed they are mostly just variations of pleating.

I did a quick bit of research to find out if red, white and blue did mean anything on a cockade in the 18th century.  It turns out that the ‘tricolour cockade of France’ was created in 1789 by the Paris militia in response to Camille Desmoulins asking his followers to wear green cockades. The Paris militia’s cockades had blue in the centre and red on the outside.

It doesn’t look like anyone has used red in the centre and blue on the outside apart from the (British) Royal Air Force which of course is much more recent, but probably why it felt more natural for me to set the colours in that order – I am after all a forces brat!

First I wanted to see roughly how big the cockades should be, so I made a quick shape in petersham to place on the shoe.

Getting an idea for the sizing of the cockade

Getting an idea for the sizing of the cockade - don't worry they looked a lot better than this in the end!

Base material

I knew I wanted at least 2 or 3 tiers, and as all my petershame was 25mm wide at most, I knew I would have to use a base to sew on of some kind. I found some white felt in my scrap box and thought it would be perfect to cut in to circles.

I folded the circles in to quarters so I could find the centre, and then I used a handy large transparent button to make an inner guideline for the 2nd tier.

Tracing round a glass to make felt circles

Tracing round a glass to make felt circles

Using a button to make an inner guideline

Using a large button to make an inner guideline

Blue (box pleat) tier

The blue petersham I had ordered was quite thick, so I didn’t want to ruffle it too much. Instead I decided to make box pleats.

First I used chalk to mark 10mm spacings along the petersham as I wanted to make sure they looked regular.

Marking 10mm spacings

Marking 10mm spacings

Box pleating the petersham

Box pleating the petersham

Next, I worked out I would need 8 pleats to get a circle with a large enough circumference.

Box pleats pinned on to the felt circles. Checking the size on the shoe.

Box pleats pinned on to the felt circles. Checking the size on the shoe.

White (knife pleat) tier

For the next tier I wanted to use a different pleat. One where the folds would overlap, but I wasn’t sure  how wide the pleats should be and how much they should overlap, so I did another test. Again, I started by marking out spacings, but this time 5mm apart using soluble marker.

Test pleats. The pleats at the beginning are tighter than at the end.

Test pleats. The pleats at the beginning are tighter than at the end.

I decided I liked the wider pleats where more ribbon was used because you would have folds at the outer edges as well as in the centre.  If you didn’t use enough, the outer edge would look taught.

I also tried to end the circle so the join would be under a pleat and not show, and then stitched the edges together.

Sewing the edges together to complete the circle

Sewing the edges together to complete the circle

Red (ruffle) tier

The centre tier was going to have to be quite small, so I just did a straight stitch 1/4 in from the edge of the red grossgrain and then gathered it in to a circle tying it taught and sewing the two edges together.

Back of the red ruffled tier

Back of the red ruffled tier

Constructing the cockade

This was pretty easy starting with the blue tier, I just pinned it on to the felt and stab stitched in place. Then placed the white layer using the guide I had drawn on to the felt earlier. On the red tier I tried to catch the red ruffles where they touched the felt, so that it would not disturb the gathers.

Sewing on the blue tier

Sewing on the blue tier

Sewing on the blue tier - back

Sewing on the blue tier - back

The finished cockades

A pair of red, white and blue cockade's - front

A pair of red, white and blue cockades - front

Back of the cockades

Back of the cockades

Would you buy one or would you just make your own? Please let me know :)

Attaching the cockades to the shoes

My shoes were now thoroughly dry after dying and had come out quiet well, now it was time to decorate them with the cockades.

I used very strong button hole thread and tried to use the existing holes which were made by the wires holding on the bows I had prized off previously. The uppers of the shoes were very hard to get the needle through, so I had to use my metal thimble to push and the rubber one to help me pull out.

Sewing on the top of the cockade to the shoe

Sewing on the top of the cockade to the shoe

You can see where the previous decoration is being covered up

Sewing through the shoe to the felt


Trying to use existing holes to get the needle through

Trying to use existing holes to get the needle through

Homework 29: Quilted petticoat – pleating on to waistband

Now the bottom of the quilted petticoat is finished, I have to concentrate on the top. First thing to do is to get rid of any excess wadding above the quilting line. The quilting on the petticoat only touches the waistband at the front, around the side and the back, the quilting doesn’t start until it drops off the roll of the bumpad.

Once all the excess has been removed, I double checked the waistline markings and the laid the quilt out flat on the table. It was folded in half with the centre front and centre back on the crease. After that, I carefully added seam allowance and marked parallel to waistline. Next thing to do was carefully cut.

Excess seam allowance cut parallel to waistline

Excess seam allowance cut parallel to waistline - you can see the hump for the bumpads.

Pleating on to waistband

It would  have been easier to gather, especially as the waist would not bee seen much, but I had read a lot about petticoats of the period would have most likely been pleated, so I wanted to do that. I also thought it would look better with the pocket slits.

Trying to remember the pleating tips Claire had told us earlier in the year, I ended up pleating  and repleating 10 or more times as I didn’t want them too big or too small. I also had a tendency to leave the petticoat too flat at the front so that it looked like a big upside down U.

Pleating on to waistband, but with too much fabric at the back, so the front looks too flat.

Pleating on to waistband, but with too much fabric at the back, so the front looks too flat.

I realised if I had more fabric at the front, the fabric would fall in more of the period shape.

Pleats too wide

Pleats too wide

I wanted the pleats to look even, but I also wanted the quilted ovals to match and line up in places and this drew me to make larger or smaller pleats than what was required.

Back of the petticoat - showing the oval meeting up on the pleat folds

Back of the petticoat - showing the oval meeting up on the pleat folds

Once I was happy with it, I tacked it on to the waistband ready for fitting.

Class 23: Draping the quilted petticoat and top fabric to check yardages

Draping the quilted petticoat and top fabric

I couldn’t wait to drape it on the stand to see what it would look like. The tree design came up a lot higher than I was expecting. The stand would not go down as low as my waistline, so in the photos she is sitting a few inches taller than me. The petticoat appears longer as I have left a good 75mm seam allowance at the hem, although I am planning to put three lines of stitching on the hem 1cm apart, and the bias binding needs to be added.

Draping the quilted petticoat on the stand

Draping the quilted petticoat on the stand

I also draped the top fabric over the petticoat to check the fabric yardage and formula Claire and I previously worked out was still correct to get the period shape.

Top fabric draped over the quilted petticoat

Top fabric draped over the quilted petticoat

Pleating and gathering

While the petticoat was on the stand, I practised my pleating and gathering.

Pleating at the back

Pleating at the back

Gathering on the stand

Gathering on the stand

Replacing eyelets

One of my eyelets had come off a little while ago, and a few others looked loose, so I used my prym eyelet tool at home to push them together. Unfortunately, I didn’t have the right sized attachment for the 5mm eyelets, but I thought it would be close enough. It wasn’t and so a few of my eyelets were deformed before I realised what was happening as it only disfigured them on the side I couldn’t see.

Deformed and replaced eyelets

Deformed and replaced eyelets. You can see one deformed eyelet I can't get out.

Eyeleting tools: hole punch and pliers - I wish I had a grommet/eyelet machine

Eyeleting tools: hole punch and pliers - I wish I had a grommet/eyelet machine

Class 10: Petticoat construction – waistbands and pleating/gathering on the stand

Finding the waist

  1. Set up the stand (dummy) You can either set up the stand so the the waistline is at the correct height, or shorter so the distance between the floor and the waistline is the actual intended length of the skirt i.e. the hem sits on the ground. The second method makes it easier for you to get the hemline level all round with out having to use a ruler.
  2. Arrange the petticoat Once you have the right height, put the petticoat on the stand and level it out. Arrange the fabric of the petticoat roughly how you want it to end up, especially paying attention to the amount of fabric at the front sides and back, as more fabric will be required at the sides to go over the bum pads, and you may wish to have less fullness at the front of the skirt. Gather at front and pleat at the back. Too many gathers at the front will make it fall in.
  3. Mark the waistline When you are happy with the draping, use a water soluble marker (normally blue) draw around the waistline. The blue line goes at the bottom of the petersham waistband which should sit on the actual waist.
  4. Take the petticoat off the stand and lay flat. As the fabric was gathered when you drew the waistline, the blue line will now appear as dots or dashes. Connect the dots on one side, and then copy to other side and ensure they are even. You will see the line going up over where the bum pads would be and lower at the front an back where it is flatter.
  5. Add 7.5 cam seam allowance at the top and cut off the excess fabric. Keep cut off as this can be used again as a template for these bumpads.

Applying the petticoat waistband

Using a Petersham strip for the waistband, take the waist measurement and add 1.25cm for ease, and another 7.5 cm at each end for fitting (better to be too long than too short). Mark cf and quarters.

Pin on bum pads and petticoat drops to stand.

Starting at the back, pin the right hand side of the placket opening to the CB mark on the petersham waistband.

Using double thread tack top and bottom of pleats on to petersham. This allows you the machine stitch from the petersham side without the pleats folding back.

See my petersham waistband sample for more detailed instructions (with pictures).

Tips for pleating/gathering on the stand

  • Do one side and then the other (pleats normally face towards the back)
  • Gather front and then let out to ease. Gathers might be good between pleats and front
  • You can use your fingers to measure the depth of a pleat and check that they are even
  • You can often see at the bottom of pleat or drapes if they are out or uneven
  • Chevron pleat – front first, last to back
  • Edge of deep pleats face centre back
  • Yokes may be used for bigger petticoats

Homework:

  • practice pleating/gathering petticoat waistband on the stand.

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