Saturday, April 16, 2011

Wedding Dress Alterations-How to shorten a dress with horsehair braid

This is the first of several posts on altering wedding dresses.   This is how I shorten a dress with horsehair braid in the hem.  Horsehair braid is a polyester mesh that comes in various widths and is used to stiffen the bottom of the dress.  Don't leave it out --it makes a wonderful difference!
1)     Pin up the hem





2)     Open the seam and separate the dress from the lining



3)     The braid will probably be sewn to the lining.  Remove the braid.





4)     Place the bottom edge of the braid along the new hemline of the lining.



5)  Pin or baste in place and then fold on hemline with the braid inside.



6)   Stitch along fold.  I like to stitch about 1/4 to 1/2" from the fold.  Make sure you catch the braid.


7)     Trim away excess fabric.  Don't cut the braid!


8)     Stitch the top edge of the braid to the lining.  (sometimes I skip this step--it just depends of the dress and the width of the braid.




9)     Trim excess fabric from the dress and fold along new hemline.  





10)     Pin top and lining together.



11)   Stitch together by hand.   Make sure that you don't catch the top layer!


12)    Press

13)  Now just hem any other linings and cut any netting and you are done!  For another method go here and here































21 comments:

  1. There is a shorter way to do this, iron in the pinned hem line, pin the lining and outter fabric together so they are lined up and not shifting up or down, place the horse hair in the middle of the ironed line and sew 1/4" on the horse hair edge through all layers on the bottom of the hem side. Cut excess along the edge, go in through the lining, and sew an edge stitch on the seam you just sewed then sew the other end of the horse hair to just the lining. Turn right side out and close up lining sideseam and you are finished!

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