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Hi everyone,

I am hoping to make a long, pleated formal skirt as part of my wedding dress, like the one in the Elie Saab picture below.

The skirt will hang down parallel to the lengthwise grain and I am planning to drape the muslin using a mannequin.

I was just wondering how might the pattern look, and approximately how many metres of fabric would I need for the skirt? My measurements are currently 70cm waist, 115cm front length, perhaps a bit longer at the back.


Any advice would be very appreciated. Thank you so much.


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  • 985f0154fdefdf284531d76b36fbffee7a42548e_large

    Oct 15, 2013, 08.31 AMby katexxxxxx

    Hm… Not sure that IS pleated, you know. Looks like it’s several layers of silk chiffon, cut in circles, and gathered onto the waist. It might be done with soft thumb-pleats under the lace… The skirt is far wider at the hem than at the waistline, though, so definitely flared.

    If you want a similar look, with pleats, the best way to do it is to contact a company that does sunray pleating and see what they quote for a single garment. It’s not a type of pleating you can do at home. The skirt is cut in a half circle and then pleated by a special machine, using a form.

  • Img_2020_large

    Oct 15, 2013, 08.39 AMby Deanna31


    It depends how wide you want the pleats, but I would get 2 drops of fabric 125cm long – one for the back and one for the front. In the picture the fabric looks gathered and quite a bit of gathering too. So I would just buy 250cm of fabric for the skirt, cut it in half, sew the sides together in a french seam, gather it, sew it onto the bodice and then try it on and chalk it to hem it.

    Have fun!!

  • Missing

    Oct 17, 2013, 07.29 AMby loktinhunjaoban

    Hi Kate and Deanna,

    Thank you so much! What fantastic advice. I’ll try it myself with the two pieces of silk chiffon cut into half circles gathered at the top… I will probably need to layer this a few times.

    Thanks again, really appreciate it!


  • Sewing_machine_large

    Oct 17, 2013, 09.02 PMby bjr99

    I would test the pattern on a cheaper fabric than silk chiffon. Try a polyester first to see if this is the look you want.

    1 Reply
    • 985f0154fdefdf284531d76b36fbffee7a42548e_large

      Oct 17, 2013, 11.25 PMby katexxxxxx

      Yes, well worth it. Poly chiffon won’t give you quite that liquid flow you get with silk, but it will give you a fair idea of fit and shape.

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