Monday, December 3, 2012

Holiday Bustle ...

3 of the 6 grandkids along with 2 of the 3 sewing machines in the room ...
With so many victorian themed events popping up during Christmas & New Years , I thought I would share my bustle I make up for myself & others . It is based on antique hip-form bustle pads I have seen , and resembles in no way the couch-bolster pillows with ties that are seen being sold as bustle pads everywhere .
I start by cutting each one with the shape ( or lack there of ) of the person that will be wearing it . I free hand cut 3 elongated crescent shapes out of two layes of a fine cotton twill weave .
I make each layer by sandwiching high loft batting between fabric & serging the edge . Then I run a row of stitching aprox 1/2 inch from that edge to secure the batting.
I then pleat & secure the upper edge of each pad to get the contour I am needing for the dress & person wearing it .
 This lady is quite tall & thin with little curve at the hip or behind , so I bulked up the undermost layer :
I only attach the points to the waist tape , this makes for a cooler garment & less bulk where there tends to be layers of closings already .
Then I attach the 2nd layer in the same manner ;
and then the 3rd:
It is shown above on the front of my dress form to illustrate how the extra bulk underneith will help build up the rear .
Of course using one of the vintage machines makes for a better time sewing & is good for them to run & feel needed ; )
Plus the top-of-the-line Husqvarna Diamond beeps & stops & sends me hate mail on it's screen if I sew over pleated layers of tighly woven twill . "Main motor overload" , really ? Computers ...
Have a great time sewing this holiday season & ask for a vintage machine from Santa !


  1. Nice Blog.....good info, thank you. Now I want to make one of these! I have my Mom's old "HomeMaker" machine that would do these seams just fine...I had it completely restored years ago just for these kind of "impossible" sewing ventures. It now sews anything from sail-cloth to leather!
    I also think I'll subscribe! Great job!

    1. Great ! Glad you have it & plan on using it . The only trick to using an older machine is to keep it oiled & it will serve you well : )

  2. Yes indeed, that is one of two things most folks forget about older machines....that, and maintaining their electrical systems. Older wiring can deteriorate, fray and become dangerous, so I had my Mom's machine done over and have used it many times, still appreciate it's ability to do the kinds of sewing modern machines can't even think about doing, LOVE it and my personal connection/history I have with it, I actually learned to sew on it when I was 13!....Happy Holidays to you and continued good blogging!