In this tutorial you’ll learn how to sew cartridge pleats.
In the early Victorian era, skirts were often attached with cartridge pleats (or gauging) to the waistband. Cartridge pleats help to give the skirt a dome shape which was fashionable in the 1840s – 1860s. Here’s a picture of an 1850s petticoat, and of an 1850s dress with cartridge pleating.
At the top of your skirt, turn the seam allowance to the wrong side of the fabric. Gather the fabric with running stitches (about an 1/4 inch wide or more, depending on the fabric thickness and amount of fabric). To secure the ends of the gathering thread, wrap the thread a couple of times round a pin in a figure 8.
Draw the thread tight, gathering the fabric.
You can do more rows of running stitches if you wish. For this petticoat I’ve made just one row of running stitches.
Lay your gathered skirt and waistband right sides together. You can space the pleats evenly or gather the fabric more at the back of the skirt.
Stitch each pleat with a whipstitch to the waistband.
I’ve stitched each pleat with two stitches for extra security.
Continue till all of the cartridge pleats are attached to the waistband.
I like sewing cartridge pleats as they’re fast and easy to make.
This cartridge pleating was for my Victorian tucked petticoat.