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Draft a Fast and Easy Flounce !

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.

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Blogger A Gal Who said...

Thanks for this tute! How easy is this!!!

2:55 PM  
Blogger gwensews said...

Thank you for that tutorial. I was just wondering where you were, so am glad to see you posting.

3:03 PM  
Blogger Summerset said...

How easy and super clever! Thanks for sharing!

3:31 PM  
Anonymous Theresa in Tucson said...

Pam, thanks for the tutorial. I have a skirt pattern I bought at the thrift store that was missing the flounce. My first attempt was not so successful. This should solve my problem. Sounds like you are feeling better and sewing and posting again

4:48 PM  
Blogger judy said...

Love the shirt you made! Thanks for the tutorial - you make things seem so easy!!

5:31 PM  
Blogger Rose said...

Oh boy! I have something new to try! Thanks. I love the cute tunic that you made.

6:14 PM  
Blogger Gorgeous Things said...

Great tutorial - thanks!

6:21 PM  
Blogger willow and moo said...

Thanks Pam! Wonderful tute! I'm sure I will use this in the future. :)

7:13 PM  
Blogger Nancy K said...

Definitely thanks for sharing this easy and clever tutorial.

7:49 PM  
Blogger Anne said...

Thanks for the tutorial!! I'll definitely be adding a flounce to the next shirt I make for my daughter!

I featured your tutorial at Craft Gossip Sewing:


10:16 PM  
Blogger Sandra said...

Thank you so much!!!! I did a flounce before and I did all the math to figure out what size circle to make and then cut out. This is SOOOOO much easier and more accurate.

10:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello, thank you for the great tutorial!

The tunic is lovely, could you tell me from which issue of Ottobre this pattern is from?

Bye, Kati

2:02 AM  
Anonymous Holly said...

Thanks so much! My favorite skirt has a flounce and I've been wondering if I could replicate it.

10:07 AM  
Blogger Cennetta said...

This is perfect! Thanks and Happy New Year!

11:36 AM  
Blogger meredithp said...

Thanks, Pam. So much easier than geometry. :-)

Hope you are feeling better.

3:58 PM  
Blogger kr said...

Thank you! I've always wondered how to make a flounce and you make it look so easy. I love your blog with all the wonderful information you post.

8:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you so much, Pam, for showing us how to make an easy flounce. I have had fabric for a skirt sitting in my sewing room for years because it cried out for a flounce. Now I can make it. you are so generous.

Jeanne in Marvelous Melbourne

11:17 PM  
Blogger Natalie said...

Pam, you are amazing!! Love this!

3:46 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This sounds great. I was wondering, and this may sound silly, but does the flounce pattern need to be cut on a fold or as is? Thanks.

4:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm a little confused- I want to add a flounce to a skirt. Shouldn't the shape of the piece end up looking more like a half circle, one for the front and one for the back of the skirt? Please help!

4:53 PM  
Blogger Pam Erny said...

This flounce was drafted for a one piece sleeve...2 flounces were cut from the fabric, one for each sleeve. When you need a flounce for skirt, you need to make separate flounce pattern pieces for the front and back, making sure the 'slashes' are spread the same amount. A flounce does not "need" to be a 1/2 circle..it can be any degree of curve, up to a true 1/2 circle. It just depends on the amount of "flounce-i-ness" you want :)

8:27 PM  
Blogger Pam Erny said...

About the flounce pattern needing to be cut on the fold of the fabric...No, Not this time...because I used the entire span of the sleeve bottom edge to draft the flounce. If I had only used 1/2 the span to draft the flounce, then yes I would have to cut it on the fold of the fabric.

8:21 AM  
Anonymous Twill Jill said...

I found you on the Seamingly poll. I JUST posted about getting over my fear of flounces last nite and found this post today. Now that I'm totally over my fear I am completely psyched to try your method. You sure make it look easy!

12:29 PM  
Blogger Rachel said...

Oh thank you thank you!! I feel dumb saying this but I've tried and tried to think of a way to easily do this for at least a YEAR! I can't wait to try this.

9:06 PM  
Blogger K-Sue said...

This is so simple, so elegant that it takes my breath away. The picture of the spread "inchee" reminds me of calculus book graphics - making an equation to approximate a curve based on a straight line. Now I want to add a flounce or 2 to a few skirts and sleeves. Thank you for sharing this.

8:40 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You're brilliant! Thanks so much!!


4:10 PM  
Blogger nannyisme said...

Fab! I am going to try this right now. Thanks for the tute!


11:48 PM  
Blogger Ginger said...

OMG!!! How easy you make finding the inner circle of a flounce. I have been struggling all weekend with this. Thank you so much!!!!

11:22 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That is so clever - I was puzzling how to work out the length of the curve - glad I waited till tomorrow before starting!

2:48 PM  

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