So I'm only now really getting back my own sewing mojo after a prolonged period of commercial sewing and other stresses. The feeling of sewing for pleasure again, with no deadline or pressure is rather nice! But kind of slow going so I apologise for the lack of posts :)
I ended up picking up a project that I had gathered the materials for about four years ago and then left in a bag at the bottom of a box, a corded petticoat.
I've been thinking of making a late 1820s / early 1830s dress with some yummy gold silk that I have so I made this corded petticoat with that silhouette in mind. I'm pretty sure though that it will be useful for lots of eras!
I used cotton sheeting and had a whole roll of cotton piping cord, about 1/4" thick, and ended up pre-washing both, just in case. For the cord I took it off the roll and dunked it into a sink of hot water and left it there for a while crossing my fingers that it wouldn't get too tangled between washing and drying!
I did a bit of research and it seemed that corded petticoats were most successful when not too full so I decided on an 86" circumference for my petticoat. There are a few ways of making a corded petticoat but what I went with was to sew up my panels completely into the skirt and then corded it. If you leave one seam undone, cord it flat and then sew that final seam up it can cause it to dip in a funny way.
I made the petticoat about 20" longer than I needed and then simply folded the extra up, put the first row of piping cord in that fold and then each subsequent row was sewn between the two layers.
It takes longer than you think, even with a piping foot! I didn't go too far up as it was a 20s/30s look I was going for but when I make one for an 1840s impression I'll go right the way up close to the waist.
It gives quite a nice effect, not too pronounced but definitely adds volume where it's needed! So that's it, just a nice simple petticoat :)