The Secret is Out: It’s a Bustle Belt
The prototype is complete! Click to zoom in.
Part mini-bustle, part bellydance coin belt, part sassy underwear-as-outerwear.
I used some leftover medium-weight woven cotton and plastic lumber ties cut to size and rounded on the edges. You can’t see them, which is good because they are green and have black numbers printed on them. In a not terribly interesting way.
The front edge is curved up from the hem to the long sash ties. I solved the problem by cutting two of the curved pieces for each side, then sewed them together along the curved edge, turned, pressed, and stay-stitched the other edges inside the seam allowance and treated the resulting piece as one piece of fabric. That’s one of the reasons I was sewing through so many layers.
I think the sash is the perfect length and width. I also liked making the angled tips.
I think I’d like to make the front/side curves more obvious.
I may take a small dart at the back center of the sash to keep it from tilting so far down, which looks OK but wasn’t exactly what I was going for and might not work on all body types.
The fabric was WAY too heavy for the ruffles. Good to know. The last time I made ruffles, it was from a very light cotton fabric, so I’ll experiment with that, which gives fairly perky ruffles, and drapier fabrics like satin and velvet. This fabric sort of makes it feel like a utili-bustle.
It’s not immediately obvious, but I’ve got some length issues at the side hem. Chalk it up to my first pattern drafting attempt, and the complexity of construction. My current idea for altering this is to shorten the ruffles, which allows the entire thing to be shorter. Shorter is cuter.
I have a lot of ideas for theming these bustle belts. Of course, I’d like to do some up in various bellydance styles (American Tribal, Turkish, Eastern European, Egyptian), but I also want to do some in steampunk styles (Safari Adventuress, Naturalist, Cthulhu Enthusiast) and goth/industrial too. I envision lots of jingly bits and yummy fabrics combined.