How To Sew Cartridge Pleats – A Tutorial

How To Sew Cartridge Pleats Victorian Historical Sewing Tutorial Step By Step

Learn how to sew cartridge pleats like in the Victorian era! In the 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 between the 1840s and 1860s. Here’s a picture of an 1850s dress with cartridge pleating.

How To Sew Victorian Cartridge Pleats

Secure the ends of the gathering thread by wrapping the thread a couple of times around a pin in a figure 8. Then, at the top of your skirt, turn the seam allowance to the wrong side of the fabric. Gather the fabric with running stitches – about 1/4″ apart or more depending on the fabric thickness and amount of fabric. On this petticoat I did just one row of running stitches. But you can also do more rows of running stitches if you want.

Related: 5 Ways To Attach Ruffles – Historical Sewing

Now pull the thread tight to gather the fabric. You can space the cartridge pleats evenly or gather the fabric more at the back of the skirt.

Then with the right sides together, attach each cartridge pleat with an overhand stitch to the waistband. For extra security, I usually attach each cartridge pleat with two overhand stitches.

Related: 6 Ways How To Insert Lace – Historical Sewing

Continue until all cartridge pleats are attached to the waistband. This cartridge pleating was for my Victorian tucked petticoat.

Related: Victorian Tucked Petticoat

2 thoughts on “How To Sew Cartridge Pleats – A Tutorial

  1. Hello. Lovely tutorial on cartridge pleating.
    Two questions about sewing each pleat to the waistband In the photos here, is the white woven band shown the final, finished waistband? How is it fastened: button? ties?

    I’m stumped: what is that white, woven waistband called? Is it an interfacing thing? I know I’ve seen it but can’t think where or how to ask for it by name. Do I have to handmake that too?!? Just kidding.
    Thank so very much.

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