Tutorial: Faced waistband

12/22/2015


After a long blogging break I could not think of a better way to treat you than posting a tutorial. The faced waistband is one my favourite and most used couture techniques. This time I used it for a pleated tweed skirt (I will showcase in a separate post). I am proud to say that this tweed is a remnant piece from my stash - it was bought in New York six years ago. The tweed has subtle sparkle, which is unfortunately not visible on the images. I really like this play of conservative color, classic style and little sparkle, which makes a versatile piece - especially during the holiday season.


The waistband is lined with silk crepe-de-chine and interfaced with hair canvas. Constructing a waistband this way reduces bulk and maximizes the comfort.


There are couple of tutorials on constructing the faced waistband, all by Claire Shaeffer (I indicated the sources below). I made my own, small adjustments and now sharing the process of making the faced waistband for this skirt.

STEP 1: Choosing interfacing


There are couple of different options available for interfacing the waistband: grosgrain ribbon (petersham) or hair canvas. The choise depends really on the style of the skirt and fabric characteristics. For my pleated skirt I chose wool tweed and decided to have a 1 1/2 in. wide waistband - a narrower waistband looked disproportionate with the width of the pleats. This eliminated grosgrain ribbon as an option since I had only 1 in. wide grosgrain available at home. In addition, grosgrain felt too soft for the style. I wanted stronger support for the pleats.


STEP 2: Preparing interfacing


I cut two bands of hair canvas, each 1 1/2 in. wide. The length is 1 1/2 in. longer than the waist measurement on the skirt. Then, I marked zigzag pattern on one of the bands and pinned them together, with the marked band on top. 


Using wide-stitch setting, I stitched the waistband interfacing layers along the marked lines.


STEP 3: Preparing the waistband


I decided to underline the tweed after testing all three layers - interfacing, organza underlining and tweed. Hardly noticeable, but organza gave a smoother appearance and feel to tweed. Both, underlining and tweed, are cut with appr. 5/8 in. seam allowance around the interfacing. I like to give a wider allowance along the short edges: appr. 3/4 in.


I basted the tweed and organza layers together, pinned the interfacing to the underlined waistband and cross-stitched the interfacing to the waistband seam allowance, picking only the hair canvas layer on the interfacing, and the silk organza layer just along the edge of the interfacing.


STEP 4: Attaching the waistband to the skirt


Next, the waistband is pinned to the skirt, basted and then machine-stitched. All the basting is removed and waistline seam allowances graded and trimmed where necessary. Now the waistband seam allowances are turned over the interfacing and cross-stitched to it. The waistband corners need to be carefully mitered by hand using fell stitches.


STEP 5: Lining the waistband 


Lining is the final step before completing the waistband. I decided to use contrasting blue silk crepe-de-chine to line the waistband - it was a small remnant piece from my stash and it matched the ribbon I used to finish the skirt hem.

The lining is cut about an inch wider and longer than the finished waistband (allowing 1/2 in. for seams). One of the long edges is pressed under 1/2 in. This edge is then aligned with the top edge of the waistband (wrong side to wrong side), pinned and fell-stitched along the fold.

The remaining edges of the waistband are folded under by hand, pinned and fell-stitched.


STEP 6: Finishing


Finally I attach hook & eye to the waistband using buttonhole stitch. When attaching hook & eye, especially the hook that is sewn to the lining,  it is important to catch some of the interfacing layer, otherwise the hook will pull the lining, which won't provide a tight closure and will tear the silk after a while. 


THE HEM

I haven't lined the skirt, mostly because of the pleats. Instead I finished the seams with silk organza bias binding. The hem is simply turned over and catch-stitched to the underlining. I used a blue ribbon to cover the raw catch-stitched edge and attached it to underlining and turned over hem with an uneven basting stitch: tiny stitches on the face, and longer ones inside.


Here you can see how the hem looks on the outside.


I hope you will find my tutorial useful. The faced waistband portion is adapted from Claire Shaeffer's instructions, in

Claire B. Shaeffer, The Couture Skirt: More sewing secrets from a Chanel collector, 2014
Claire B. Shaeffer, Couture Sewing Techniques: Revised and Updated, 2011

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12 comments

  1. Thank you for the very detailed tutorial.
    Hope all is well with you and your family. Happy Christmas Marina.

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  2. Wonderful tute! Great to have you back in the blogosphere!

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  3. Thank you for such a clear and detailed tutorial, It will definitely help me with some of my my future projects :)

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  4. Thank you this tutorial is really helpful and a keeper.

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  5. Hi Marina! So good to hear from you. And your tutorial Comes in quite Handy as I plan to make a skirt in the near future. Would you use the same method in case the skirt is lined?

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    1. Thanks :) This method works great with lined skirts. I sew the lining just above the waistline seam with small running stitch before lining the waistband (step 5). Then I line the waistband (step 6), fell-stitching through the skirt lining to catch the layer underneath. This way the skirt lining will be quite secure.

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  6. Thanks for the helpful tutorial. One question: Was there a reason you didn't sew the bias strip to the hem at 1/4 inch and slipstitch the other end to the shell fabric?

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    1. I actually wanted to use hem lace first, but then I didn't like how the color I had looked with this skirt. With the hem already cross-stitched to the underlining I decided to hand stitch a ribbon over it to conceal the raw edge. In addition, having cross stitches under the ribbon gives the hem more hold, since it is under stress when I sit in the skirt - it hits above the knee. I hope I could answer your question.

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  7. Welcome back! This is lovely, as always. Hope that all is well for you and your family.

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    1. Thanks, Nancy! All is well :) Miss seeing you all though ;)

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  8. With the hem already cross-stitched to the underlining I decided to hand stitch a Grosgrain Ribbon over it to conceal the raw edge.

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