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Practice Kilt - Here Goes Nothing

2011-12-09

I finally got started on my “practice” kilt, which I’m planning to make more or less traditionally according to The Art of Kiltmaking. I’m using 10 ounce black cotton denim, which is not a traditional material. However, it’s a good deal less expensive than fine wool tartan, especially with a 50% off coupon at Jo-Ann Fabric. I want to get a feel for the process before going all-out.

Snipped

Snipping the edge of the fabric

Ripped

The traditional instructions direct you to rip the fabric to the correct height (waist to the top of the knee, plus a two inch rise) instead of cutting it. It's nerve-wracking to contemplate even with relatively inexpensive denim, much less fine wool tartan. Unlike paper, though, fabric is inclined to rip perfectly straight along the warp threads.

After removing dangling threads, the edge remains pretty stable.

Following a couple of recommendations I had seen on X Marks the Scot, I left the apron lines on straight angles through the waist to hip marks instead of flaring them out; cotton does not lend itself to as much shaping as wool.

Already looking like something more than a big length of cloth

The first actual stitches attach the left apron edge to the first pleat.

It was after stitching the apron edge to the first pleat that I realized my calculations were going to result in shallower pleats than I'd like, so I'll have to regroup and re-mark the pleat lines and underapron. Dropping some pleats will make the remaining ones deeper (and make for less stitching.)