V-shaped tuck that is sewn into a garment in order to shape the fabric so that the garment fits the rounded parts of the body. Darts are most often found at the bustline, the back shoulder, the waistline, and the hipline.
A means of manipulating fullness in garments by folding the fabric and sewing a row of stitching parallel to the fold. Fullness is released at the end of the stitching. Tucks and pleats are similar, but tucks are smaller, often being only an inch or less in width. Often a number of tucks are made in the same area. Sometimes they are turned to the outside of a garment as ornamentation.
A triangular shaped fabric piece that is intended to add gradual fullness to a garment. Skirts often consist of two or more gores. They allow a closer fit over the hips and then gradually flare out at the lower part of the garment.
(1) n. In design of a garment, ease refers to fullness incorporated into a design so that it will fit comfortably. (2) v. Joining a larger section of a garment to a smaller part by very gradually folding or gathering the edge where the pieces will meet until the larger piece is the same size as the smaller piece.
Small piece of fabric, which is diamond-shaped, that is sewn into the underarm of a sleeve or into the crotch of pants. These areas often fit tightly and are subject to stress. The gusset provides additional width and stretch. As a result, seams in these areas are less likely to tear.
Triangular piece of fabric that is inserted into the lower edge of a skirt or sleeve in order to provide additional fullness. Especially popular when fullness around the hem of a skirt but not at the waist is fashionable.
A means of distributing fullness in some part of a garment by sewing a loose row of stitches, pulling the thread, and sliding the fabric along the thread to make soft folds in order to decrease the width of the fabric.
In shirring three or more rows of gathers are placed parallel lines to achieve a decorative effect while also manipulating fullness.
Current fashion descriptions use the term ruching to refer to clothing with large areas of fullness gathered in to form a rippled effect. Historically, ruching was a trimming made by pleating bands of fabric and stitching the pleats in place. These bands were sewn onto various parts of the garment.
In sewing, the place where two pieces of fabric are joined. This creates a more or less visible line on the surface of a garment. Many different kinds of seam constructions are used, depending on whether the seam is a decorative element of the design, the kind of fabric used, or how much stress is placed on the seam. The following are several of the most commonly used seam types. Plain seam is made by placing the right sides of two garment pieces together and sewing the seam on the under side of the fabric. When the pieces are opened, the seam will be on the inside of the garment. Some type of seam finish may be needed to prevent the seam from raveling. Many plain seams are made on a machine called a serger that uses a looping stitch to cover over the edges of the seam and keep it from raveling. Flat felled seam or a simulated flat felled seam is often used in sturdy blue jeans. A very durable seam, it has a double row of stitching that holds the seam down. French seams are used on very sheer and delicate fabrics and require several steps in which a seam is sewn on the right side of the fabric, then the right sides of the fabric are placed together and another row of stitching is made that encloses the original seam.
A fold of fabric that is either stitched down or held in place by another construction feature in order to manipulate fullness. Usually a number of pleats are grouped together. Pleats may be part of a blouse, skirt, or pants. There are many different types of pleats. Some of the most common are: knife pleats, which are pressed to keep an edge, and face in the same direction; box pleats, the edges of which face in opposite directions; inverted pleats with edges brought to face each other at a center line; sunburst or accordian pleats that are narrower at the top and wider at the bottom, and kick pleats, generally a single pleat placed at the bottom of a narrow skirt.
The lower edge of a part of a garment that has been finished off with some type of sewing to cover the raw edge. Among the more common types of hems are: plain hem that is turned up and sewn into place; rolled hem used on sheer or delicate fabrics and rolled up by hand into a narrow hem that is sewn with small hand stitches; and faced hem, which is finished with a piece of fabric sewn to the botton of the garment edge and then turned up to the underside and sewn into place.
A diagonal band of fabric or trimming similar to a turned back collar or revers that runs from the center of the waist to the outer edges of the shoulders.
The opening into which a button fits in order to close a garment. In order to make the buttonhole secure and keep it from raveling, it must be finished in some way. Worked buttonholes are finished by embroidering by hand or machine around the edge of the buttonhole with a close and secure stitch. Worked buttonholes often have more secure stitches at the end of the buttonhole where the button will rest because this area will be subjected to greater stress. Bound buttonholes, generally found on more expensive coats and suits, are made by sewing small strips of fabric or leather around the opening area, then pulling them to the inside of the garment, which makes folded edge of the strip visible from the outside. Sometimes the fabric or leather is a different color from the garment, and the buttonhole becomes part of the ornamentation of the garment.
A decorative closure for a garment that is made from cord or braid. On one side of the area to be closed, a loop is made and on the other, a large, ornamental knot. The knot passes through the loop. This style of closing is often used in Chinese-influenced designs.
A slit or opening in a garment that allows room for the garment to be put on. Plackets are most commonly found at the neck, the wrist, the top of a skirt, or the front of trousers. They can be finished with a hem or overlapping pieces that allow the placket to be hidden. Closures such as buttons, snaps, hooks, zippers, or Velcro® are often incorporated into a placket.
Fabric and garment ornamentation
Cutting shapes from textile fabrics and attaching them to another fabric or garment in order to decorate the base material. The ornamental fabrics are most often sewn to the base fabric, but may also be attached with adhesive. Quilts are frequently made with appliquéd patterns, and fabric artists and fashion designers often use this technique.
Ornamentation of a fabric by using any of a wide variety of decorative hand or machine stitches in the same or a contrasting color. Different styles of embroidery are often associated with particular geographic regions or ethnic groups.
A hand technique for decorating textiles in which parts of the fabric are covered with wax. The fabric is immersed in a dyebath and only the unwaxed area absorbs the dye. The wax is removed. If the design requires another color, wax is applied again to the area to be protected against the dye, and the fabric is placed in the dye again to add the new color. This can be repeated as often as the artisan wishes. The fabric produced by this method in Indonesia is made in traditional designs and colors, and the name batik is an Indonesian word. These designs are often imitated in machine prints for Western fashions.
A method of decorating a garment or fabric by tieing string or other material around pre-selected areas in order to prevent dye from being absorbed by these areas. The unprotected area takes up the dye, the tied area does not. To get multicolored effects, the fabric can be tied in other areas and dipped in another colored dye. This process can be repeated as often as desired. When tie-dyed fabrics become fashionable, imitations of these designs are often made by machine printing.
A method of ornamenting fabric by stitching and forming gathers in the fabric before it is dyed. After dyeing, the stitching is removed and the crinkled areas released. The areas protected from the dye by the stitching and gathering absorb the dye in irregular patterns characteristic of these fabrics.
Decorative pieces, usually made from metal or plastic, that have a hole through which they can be sewn to a garment. Sequins, which are usually round and fairly small, and paillettes, which are larger and made in different shapes, are the most common types of spangles. They are often combined with beads in decorating evening dresses, handbags, and other accessories.
A type of braid that has a heavy central core covered by a more decorative outer layer of fiber that is arranged into a design on the surface of a garment, sewn into place, and forms a raised decorative area.
Beads of an elongated tubular shape that are often sewn onto garments as ornamentation. Colors can vary.
(1) A very ornamental braid, made often in gold, silver, or other metallic colors that is flat and wide and has both edges finished in the same way. It is sometimes decorated with jewels or colored stones and has been popular as ornamentation for evening wear. (2) Lace with matching edges on both sides. (3) Tape or braid of narrow width that is applied as trimming.
A flat braid, generally rather narrow. Applied in rows or, more often, in complex ornamental patterns to decorate ares of a garment.
chiné/ warp print
A style of printing in which the lengthwise (warp) yarns are placed on the loom, a design is printed on these yarns, after which the crosswise (weft) yarns are inserted. The resulting print has a hazy, misty appearance. Most often used for gowns and other highly decorative garments.
lace and tatting
Lace and tatting are constructed by knotting. Most lace today is made by machine. It can be made either in narrow pieces or as a large piece of fabric. Handmade lace was either bobbin (also called pillow) lace or needlepoint lace. Bobbin lace was made by winding thread on small bobbins and interlacing the thread around pins held in a design on a special lace-making pillow. In needlepoint lace, a thread follows a pattern made on stiff parchment paper. It is held in place with small stitches. Then the background, which holds the design thread in place, is worked with a needle and thread. When complete, the holding stitches are cut and the lace removed from the pattern. Different lace designs developed in different regions and usually were given the name of the town where they were first made. Tatting is a hand technique in which thread is wound on small shuttles and the artisan makes loops and designs with the shuttle. Tatting is generally narrow and is used for trimming.
A hand technique for making small pieces of fabric and trimmings by knotting from two to four or more yarns, strings, or cords into a variety of decorative patterns. Macramé has been fashionable periodically and is most often seen in belts, handbags, vests, or as trimmings. Sometimes beads are incorporated into the design of the fabric.