Draft a Fast and Easy Flounce !

Monday, January 4, 2010

I made this velour tunic for my niece this morning.
It is a variation of an Ottobre Design pattern (from issue 4-2006, #25),
and the pattern already included pieces for the flounces.
However, you can easily add a flounce to any pattern by drafting it yourself !

I'll be using a sleeve pattern that includes seam allowances in this example of how to draft a flounce. First, make a copy of the sleeve pattern  to which you will be adding the flounce. Next decide how wide you want the flounce to be, and shorten the pattern from the bottom by that amount then ADD on a 1/4-inch. This extra 1/4-inch is what you'll need to sew the flounce to the bottom of the sleeve.  Now, using the newly shortened bottom of the sleeve as a guide, draw a simple rectangle that measures the length of the sleeve bottom by the width of the flounce you want PLUS a 1/2-inch (This rectangle will become your flounce pattern after some manipulation). Again, this extra 1/2-inch is what you'll need to sew the flounce to the sleeve with 1/4-inch left-over to hem the flounce itself.   The photo below shows these steps already completed.  It may sound a little complicated, but all that's been done so far is to...
Shorten the sleeve length and add a seam allowance to it.   Make a rectangle and add a seam and hem allowance to it.

Now take your rectangular piece, and draw lines on it  that are about an inch apart, as shown below--

Next, cut along these lines, leaving a "hinge" of uncut paper along the top edge like this--


Place this slashed piece on top of another larger piece of blank paper. Now spread the slashes apart by about 1/4-inch, holding them down with tape as you go, as shown below-

Now trace over your newly formed flounce pattern, truing the curves as you go. Now we have a fast and easy flounce pattern...with the seam and hem allowances included...ready to add some design flair to the bottom of a sleeve !

Of course, you can repeat the same steps to add a flounce to any edge, like the bodice hem in the sewn example of the velour tunic at the beginning of this tutorial.