Monday, May 14, 2012

Vintage Sewing Technique

I wanted to share a very cool vintage sewing technique I learned a few years back. I do a lot of historical attire and in that I have learned some techniques that are very interesting.

This particular technique creates a rouched/scalloped edge. You start with  the following design, and cut it out of a piece of cardboard. Now I made about three sections and taped them all together because none of my boxes were large enough, but it needs to be out of a heavier weight material.

You place your fabric over the scallop pattern as shown in this sketch.

Then with upholstery grade thread you hand stitch as evenly as possible with approximately 1/8" stitches along the scalloped pattern, as shown by the dashed line.

Once you have completed the full length edge of the area you want to receive this treatment you pull the stitch similar to the way you would pull a basting stitch to gather an edge.

Once you get the stitches pulled to the length and layout you like, You will want to stitch the scalloped edge to the fabric you want to place it on. You can do this treatment to the top edge of a skirt ruffle or make the scallops both directions for a fancy wider trim.

Here is a dress that has this detail at the sleeve and at the top edge of the jacket skirt.

I thought this was a great technique that gave a very unique finish to edges. I haven't used it on any of my personal designs, but that is only because I have had so many other things on the table.

If any of you have cool techniques like this we would love to share them. Our team email is

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