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How to Make Small Intricate Pleating... How to Make Tiny Pleats as a Decoration on a Garment

 Intricate pleating was used to make the long front collar of the this vest. Princess seams give this silky vest a nice fit to the body.  This vest was used in our Learn to Sew ad for VOGUE magazine.


You will need plenty of pins, an iron, fabric, chalk for marking, and interfacing to form tiny pleats.

Keep in mind that your fabric should be at least 2 and a half times the size you want the pleated area to be.  (As you pleat the fabric gets smaller.)

Begin by marking and folding the size pleat you want.
Pin every pleat on both sides as shown in the photo. Press as you pin, but don't press over your pins, the plastic on them can melt.
Stitch 1/4" on both sides of the pleated fabric. Press both front and back. Pressing and pounding with a wooden block will help keep your pleats in place.
Iron on interfacing to the wrong side of the fabric to help hold the pleats in place.
Press the front and back again and again to hold the pleats in place. Place a heavy flat object on your pleats over night to help hold in place.

Your pleated fabric is now ready to be used as a decorated area on a garment.


First couture dress!  The base of this dress was a bra. Almost the entire dress was sewn by hand. Notice the detailed intricate pleating that was sewn at the waistline.


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