Friday, September 20, 2013

Scary September- Flounce Alteration Idea

Some of us are participating in the Scary September challenge hosted by :

One participant I think is making a knit top with a flounce at the bottom.  (Well, I know who you are, but I don't want to speak out of turn, or embarrass you).  An adjustment has to be made for a full tummy, which means that a flounce at the bottom of the bodice will also need altering.

Now I am only a home sewer and not a pattern maker, but I just wondered if this could be the solution.  Below please see a very quick sketch of a flounce.  The upper edge attaches to the bodice bottom:

You will notice I have marked dotted lines within the flounce - one at the centre front, and then two either side.  I would slash and spread the intervening sections of flounce, much like you would for an A-Line skirt.  Because the outer edge of the flounce is a wider circle (remember geometry here), the top of the spread area will be narrower than the bottom:

Not very clear here, but I was sketching these over my early morning cuppa before going to the office to do some bills!  But if you look you will see I have tried to keep the trajectory of the curve.

I would trace my pattern piece first, so that I have something to cut and play with - and the "real" pattern is there to be traced again if you make a mistake.

I would measure the width of my altered bodice front pieces.  I would then know how wide my inner flounce curve (the seam that meets the bodice bottom) needs to be.  I would divide this amount by 4 (the number of cuts I am going to make ) and then spread the cuts by that amount.  Keep the trajectory of the curve, and you will note that the bottom area will spread too, but by a slightly greater amount.

I don't think it would matter if the curve flattens a bit - I haven't actually seen the pattern pieces, only the picture of the top.   I think you could sew out any excess at the sides.  Have a play with a scrap first.

Other people may have better suggestions, but I thought, for what it is worth, this idea may work.

Does anyone else have another way of solving this problem?

Sarah Liz :)


  1. Not too sure exactly how the flounce is fitting but I would start with a rectangle the length and depth required to fit around the top, then I would evenly slash into the flounce vertically, then spread the the bottom edge of the pieces until you have the desired outer finishing edge measurement, this would form a curly shape dependent on how flounce you want it.. Basically the same result but different approach I have found an image on sew tawdry,s blog here

    1. Sort of different, and sort of the same - same principle I think :)

  2. Thanks for the pics and thoughts Sarah Liz. This top has several flounces attached and I think this might work. The hard part is knowing how much to add to each flounce as they are different sizes and shapes..... Just the design of this particular top.

  3. It's a pleasure BeaJay - I agree, not easyto calculate, I had a look at your top. Do the pattern alterations and then do a muslin from anything for the bodice front, and add the new frill. A woven might be best for this as it is not likely to give. If okay, proceed, otherwise tweak.