DARTS ON BULKY FABRICS

A week ago, after getting D to try on the lining of her waistcoat, I realized that the whole thing was going to be too small and I adjusted the pattern for the outer pieces and cut out sections to sew onto the back and lining pieces.

Anyway…..this entry is all about a big bulky dart I had to deal with today, for the front section of the outer waistcoat (the inner being the lining).

First of all, the piece was increased by a few centimeters at the side so the dart got much bigger. You can see the difference in size here between the lining piece and the new size outer piece.

I folded over the front piece, making sure the tailor tacks lined up evenly at each side.

As you can see, the dart got quite wide.

I made sure that the two front pieces were folded over in opposite ways, mirror images of each other.

I stitched the dart starting from the widest tailor tack, sewing in a diagonal from the inner edge and tapering out to where the bust point will be.

Its important that you do not backstitch the end of a dart and tie a knot where it ends.

DART SEWN IN STRAIGHT LINE AND KNOTTED AT END…DO NOT BACK STITCH!

The front piece will not lye flat where the dart is and must be pressed flat first, and in regular circumstances, in at one side (more about that another time).

CUT DART OPEN TO REDUCE BULK

So, the crux of the issue is, you should cut the dart down the centre and press it open and flat in the middle to reduce bulk.

SMALL HOLE IN THE DART

But whoops, if you cut too far up, you may get a small hole. Its not very clear from the image. It looks like a bit of wide fluff in the middle of the fabric piece.

REPAIRING A HOLE

Luckily, this fabric is quite thick, so I can repair it from the inside using a small whip stitch.

This leads into the topic of suitability of a fabric for a project. So far, my understanding of this has been trial and error. This fabric is a bulky wool felt and it works very well for a waistcoat (I know this because I’ve already made myself one the same). Below is a paisley dress I made from thai silk last year. It works quite well on the upper half of the dress but the lower half is quite flimsy and didn’t hang as heavy as I hoped. But then again, once a light piece of silk, always a light piece of silk!

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