August 22, 2010

How to: Sewing a Vent Lining

Hey friends! Please note that as of 4/6/2012, this tutorial has been refashioned. The instructions and photos have all been updated to produce a much more professional result. If this is your first time visiting this tutorial, read on, if this is your second or third time (or 4th or 5th) give a read through the material as some of it has changed a bit.

This is the 3rd installment of creating a vent in a skirt. For the first two posts in this series, click here and then here. Once you've drafted the lining for a vented skirt, we now come to the sewing up of it! Yay! For clarity, I'm going to start from the very beginning of the sewing process. I'll include tips and tricks so, definitely read instead of just following along with the photos. Ok? Ok.

Step 1 ✂ You'll need to cut out your cloth to begin with. Make sure you only cut 1 of each of the lining back pieces. From there, stitch in the tucks to the lining and the darts to the skirt shell. In the above photo I've stitched the tucks in the lining pieces and then pressed the tucks to towards the centers. No biggie, right?

Step 2 ✂ These instructions are going to look awfully similar to the ones in How to: Create a Vent, but for a few minor differences. Stitch from the bottom of the zipper opening/stop to within 5/8" (1.6 centimeters) of the edge of the vent extension (make a notch for this), pivoting where the center back seam of the skirt and the vent extension meet. Please note that as per the Jenny Skirt pattern via BurdaStyle, this pattern has 5/8″ (1.6 centimeter) seams.

Step 3 ✂ Clip into corner where the center back seam and the vent extension meet. Careful not to clip through the stitching, just close to it.

Step 4 ✂ Now, before you go pressing and sewing the shell's vent extension to one side, let me warn you that I ALWAYS press the vent extension to the wrong side. If you've already done that, don't worry, you may have got it right and in the event that you got it wrong, you've got a seam ripper. To prevent my pressing and stitching the vent extension to the wrong side of the skirt shell, I stitch up the lining first. You'll do nearly the same thing that you did with the skirt shell to the lining. Take your back lining pieces and stitch the center back seam, right sides together, from notch to notch. Press seam open.

Step 5 ✂ If you haven't already, stitch the side seams of the front and back sections of the lining to each other. You can also do this on the skirt shell too. Press seams open.

Step 6 ✂ Now, its time to determine just how long your lining needs to be. This must be determined before you stitch the lining to the skirt shell so that you don't have to go back and unpick and be hateful about this experience. I like my skirt linings to generally fall 1 inch (2.5 centimeters) above my skirt hem. That means that I need to cut the hem allowance for the skirt shell off of the lining and then hem up the lining by 1 inch. For example, if the hem allowance of the skirt is 2 inches, then I would trim off 2 inches from my lining and hem it up by 1 inch. Make sense? For the purposes of this tutorial I cheated and serged an inch off the bottom of the lining. Easy, no?

Step 7 ✂ It's time to attach the lining to the vent extension of the skirt shell. We're almost done here! Yay! Alright so now, let's determine which side the vent extension on the skirt shell needs to lay. To do this, lay out the lining, right side out. Whichever side the inverted vent extension is on is the side that the skirt shell's vent extension should point toward. Now that was a mouthful and you'd think I could figure this out before now, but every single time I seem to do it wrong. Weird, I know! According to my lining, my vent extension should be pressed and stitched to the left (this with the wrong side up). On the skirt shell, press the center back seam to the clip (from Step 3) open and then press the vent extension to the correct side. Satin stitch following the seam line of the 45 degree angle along the top of the vent extension; stitch through all layers.

Step 8 ✂ It's time to stitch the skirt shell's vent extension to the lining vent extension. Remember how you left a 5/8" seam allowance at the edge of the vent extension from Step 2. I know that was awhile ago, but you did. From here, we've got to match that up to the lining and stitch them together. To do this, turn both the skirt shell and the lining wrong side out. Line up the vent extensions. With right sides together, stitch along one side of one vent extension, matching notches from the top of the vent extension to the bottom of the lining. Do the same for the other side. Press. Turn lining right side out while at the same time slipping it over the wrong side of the skirt shell. Voila!

And there you go! From here, you'll go on to finish as the sewing instructions of your skirt tell you. I think you get the idea. Yay for vented skirts with linings! Now, I know this is somewhat of an ordeal, but I promise after you perfect your pencil skirt pattern and stitch it up, the 2nd and 3rd times will go by like a breeze, to mention nothing of the 4th and 5th times! By then, I'm quite sure you'll have moved on to possibly doing this for dresses and other projects too! Yay!

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