A double inverted pleat for absolute beginners

Jumping in the deep end?…I’m all for it! The double inverted pleat demonstrated here is the same as the red skirt from previous blog. Here’s how….

1. Lay pattern front piece on folded over fabric (Burda December 09). Pin and mark in tailor tacks. N.B. As well as following the straight of grain arrow on pattern piece, be especially carefully the tweed weave runs in a straight line parallel to skirt edges. In student example (crooked fabric picture) here, she has folded fabric in a slight diagonal and so the weave is not straight with the edges.

2. Cut off tailor tacks in the middle at the surface then carefully open up fabric and cut tailor tacks in the middle (see photo)

3. Remove pattern piece carefully so the tacks stay in place.

4. Open up fabric and cut tacks so that a piece remains at each side.

5. Fold the piece back in half and pin horizontally where sewing will take place. Make sure tailor tacks line up on each side.

6. It’s okay to sew over pins if they are placed horizontally to the sewing line. The needle should hop off the pins. Occasionally it doesn’t work, especially on delicate fabrics…experimentation is always advised!

7. Sew along tailor tacks (or chalk if using) where the first pleat is marked. This is the inside pleat. Finish with a short backstitch and cut thread. By the way, I presume you’ve tested your stitch length…general rule of thumb is that the thicker the fabric, the longer the stitch. Here it is stitch length 3. Use scraps of fabric to test the stitch length after you’ve cut out the skirt. Keep all the bits of fabric leftover until you are wearing the skirt…you never know what will happen and sometimes the smallest piece can rescue a huge mistake.

8. In the illustration, Amy has sewn a crooked line and I’m telling you, it is worth ripping this out as many times as it takes until you get it right. It will never sit straight if you choose to move on.

9. Press sewing line and turn right way over. Centre the back of the pleat and make sure folded in top area corresponds in size and area to the unstitched pleat at the bottom of the skirt. Press in place using steam.
10. Refold skirt together again as fabric was cut and stitch shorter outside pleat, which will be the second inverted pleat. Fortunately, we got so engrossed at this point that I forgot to take a photograph of this stage and it was too late as the second pleat was already sewn.

While you are working with the rest of the skirt, tack down where you have pressed the pleats so they remain in place until you wear the skirt.

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