Sewing Tip of the Day (and no, not going to Acronym it down to STD ;P)
here’s some pics of tip for securing pleats, such as for kilts or any large square pleats.
1.(pic 1) mark a lot! I tend to chalk (not wax, if you use wax marker or a rubadub the lines will disappear as you steam press, nooooo) every inch (or half inch, depending upon pleat size), alternating slash and solid lines. This makes it easier to keep track of folding points.
2.(pic 1)Pins! Lots! – for pleats you can’t pin enough, alternate placement in each row as in pic. if you pin always in the same place on rows, you endup with unsupported “bands” of pleats which will gape open when you move fabric around. Be sure to magnet sweep area for pins after so as not to abuse feet of partners or pets ;)
3. (pic 2) Secure back of pleats; you can do this all the way down, but if you do, you lose the “swing” of the pleats. I usually just secure from waist down over hips and top of bum area. So on the WRONG side of pleats (inside)
-whip stitch is fine
-try to only grab one to a few threads on the “flat” side and as much as you like right on edge of the actual pleat fold. Be sure needle passes through as right angles/perpendicular to pleat. it’s easy on whip stitch to let it go at an angle, but this lets the pleat drop. Don’t stress if you can’t pick up minimal threads, generally, if you pleated well, it will be hidden on the “right” side of fabric.
4. (pic 3) the result is invisibly secure pleats. They still have “play” the illusion of being not stitched down.If you don’t like the “flappiness” you can always top stitch them down as well. For traditional piece (pre-industrial/sewing machine age/kilts) generally don’t.