Materials For Practice

Heavy Cloth, 4 x 2 1/2 Inches (2 pieces),

5x1 1/2 Inches (2 pieces, selvage).

Lining if Desired,

4x2 1/2 Inches (2 pieces).

Binding, 6 Inches, or Cashmere,

4x2 1/2 Inches (2 pieces), 3x2 Inches (2 pieces) and Lining, 3x2 Inches (or 3x4 Inches and 3x2 Inches). Lining if Desired, 4x2% Inches. Binding, 6 Inches.

Cotton. Needle.

(See directions under Sewing on Braid and Velveteen).

Plackets in dress skirts are made in various ways according to the requirements of the garment and the materials of which it is made. They are similar to the ones used in cotton fabrics (see Plackets) but demand a slightly different treatment.

Rule For Plackets

The opening in a dress skirt should be only long enough to allow it to slip on easily. It is usually placed down a seam. In heavy cloth two selvage strips of the material % an inch longer than the opening and 1% inches wide are used for the lining and the underfacing or the fly of the placket as the material is heavy enough without a lining. Light weight wool materials such as cashmere and challie have not substance enough to be used without lining. These plackets may be treated in two ways. (1) Two pieces are cut 1/2 an inch longer than the opening. One piece is intended for the fly or underfacing of the placket; it is cut lengthwise of the material and may be lined with the dress lining or cut double and folded back lengthwise on itself; the second pice is to face the upper side of the placket. It is often cut crosswise of the material. (2) One long piece, twice the length of the opening, may be cut and turned back on itself (see Placket No. 3, Finish No. 2).

The method of proceeding with dress plackets cut in two pieces is the following: The seam of the dress should be open, having previously been pressed. The right side of the opening is to lap over the left side. (Opinions differ as to the side which should lap over the other.) Take the strip which is to line the upper side of the placket. Lay it on the right side of the material and seam it to the opening a little way within the former seam, turn it back to form a facing on the wrong side and hem it to the lining or to the skirt. This side will lap over the other. As the seam has been made a little within the pressed line of the former seam, it will not show. Turn to the left side, take the piece for the fly (the selvage strip, the double strip or the lined strip) and lay it on the left side with the right sides of the cloth together. Stitch into a seam a little within the pressed line of the seam, turn the seam back and let the added piece of cloth lie flat under the right side of the placket. Bind or overcast the part of the seam below the opening ( see Binding Seams). At the bottom of the opening the fly must be fastened to the upper facing and both must be fastened to the dress lining or skirt without going through to the right side. Lay the fly flat on the facing and stitch them together at the end of the opening. The ends below the stitching may be finished in three ways. (1) If the cloth is strongly woven some of the material under the fly may be cut away and the raw edges of the fly herring-boned or hemmed to the lining of of the dress. (2) If the cloth is light in weight, turn the fly back in a fold and fasten it to the seam of the skirt, or (3) cut the raw edges of the fly and the upper facing even and bind them across with silk binding. The seam containing the fly can be bound its entire length with silk binding or it can be overcast.


Take two pieces of cloth or cashmere, 4x2 1/2 inches, leave them unlined or line them with cotton skirt lining according to the prevailing fashion. Stitch together (either by hand or machine) the two pieces in a good seam. Press the seam open. The opening for the placket can now be made down the seam 2 1/4 inches. The way to proceed with the rest of the placket depends on the cloth chosen. If it is a strong suiting use selvage strips of cloth and follow the rule in completing the placket. If a soft flimsy wool has been chosen the underfacing or fly can be lined with the dress-lining. In most wool materials a double strip of the material may be used for the underfacing. Follow the rule in completing the placket. Bind the seams with silk binding or overcast them.

Rule For Pockets

Ways of cutting and inserting pockets should also be discussed by the classes. They may be cut in two pieces in a bag shape with one side straight and the other curved, with the opening on the straight side; or they may be cut in two pear-shaped pieces and one piece laid on top of the other with an opening cut in the center of one of the pieces. The length is about 13 or 14 inches. They are set into a seam of the skirt or in a slit in the material. A bag pocket would have its opening two or more inches below its top. Pockets are faced inside with the material of the dress. This facing should extend back, above and below the opening at least two inches, so that the inside of the pocket will not show if open a little. When the pocket is made it is turned wrong side out, put through the opening of the seam prepared for it, and seamed on the wrong side to the skirt in the fold of the seam. As small a seam should be taken from the pocket as the need of strength will allow, so that it will close better. This is especially the case at the top and the bottom of the pocket seam. The seams should be pressed open and bound or overcast. A ribbon or tape should be sewed to the top of the pocket and fastened to the belt to sustain the weight and keep the pocket in shape. When the pocket and the placket are on the same seam the former usually extends to the belt and does not need the tape or ribbon. The upper part of the seam of the pocket should be carefully sewed by hand to the skirt, as the tapering off of the seams makes it rather weak at this point. The lower part of the seam may also be sewed by hand, as too deep a seam causes the pocket to flare open. The material of the pocket should match the skirt, but it must be a fast color or the contents of the pocket will be injured. Percaline is good for this purpose as the light side can be the inside of the pocket.


A class should cut full sized pockets in paper, or, if they need practice, they can be made in any available material. If the teacher wishes an example of a pocket for her interleaved copy of the Sewing Course she can make a small one and insert it in the placket (see No. 55), or she can make a separate pocket. It is better for the classes to make full sized pockets.