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Another Way to Make Pleated-Ribbon Trim

Sep 17, 2012
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This technique relies on a knife pleat, spaced so the leading edges of the finished pleats are one half a ribbon width apart, and the return of the pleat is half the ribbon width. For this technique, I use “ribbon width” as the unit of measure, which I learned from Candice Kling’s book, The Artful Ribbon (C&T Publishing, 1996). Using the width of the ribbon as the increment of measurement makes this trim easily scalable to any size ribbon. I am also using paper, as well as the ribbon to demonstrate this technique, as that seems to be a well-received way of demonstrating this kind of thing. You’ll mark the back of the ribbon to pleat it, as shown in the photo here. I explain how in the next step. The paper model is marked in red for the leading edges of the pleats, and with blue for the back folds for the returns of the pleats.  In marking, you can see that the distance between the leading edges is one and one half ribbon widths apart–this accounts for the return of the pleat, which is a half ribbon width apart. This is the distance between the red lines. There…

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  1. User avater JeanneDes January 16th

    So logical, clear and effective. Thank You!

  2. User avater KennethDKing September 24th

    Thanks for the kind words, Nani!

  3. User avater nani September 24th

    Thank you for making your lessons available to all of us, not just those who pay for the Insider membership(I am already a magazine subscriber, but cannot afford both).

    I get inspired every time I read your articles, books and lessons, it's just wonderful to have you as a resource that keeps me excited about sewing!

  4. User avater Djonee September 20th

    love it !!!! Maybe add some beading/ crystals sparing of course, to the trim ...

  5. joans43 September 19th



    Kenneth darling!! I love it! I did it for a plain black,[Liz C.] opera,floor-length gown,which needed "new life ". placed it round under the bust, used black velvet1,1/2 in.
    ribbon.Thank-you for the "rescue "!Love!

  6. User avater arjee63 September 18th

    Done with a sheer ribbon, this would be pretty as an embellishment along style lines such as a princess seam, or as an insertion down the length of a dressy sleeve.

  7. User avater KennethDKing September 18th

    To Countess: I second your shout-out about Candice Kling! She is the person who singlehandedly revived these kinds of techniques, and rarely gets full credit for doing so. And she's an exceptional teacher. If anyone reading has a chance to take a class with her, excellent time well-spent!

    And, as to where to apply this trim: The photo send by the reader who asked me the how to make it showed the trim decorating the edge of an oversized peter pan collar. Trimming edges, both straight and curved, is what I'd suggest. Using it in a large scale works very well for home furnishings. Hatbands for trimming hats, at the waist on a christening gown--the uses are almost endless. Evening or day clothes. You name it!

  8. user-1085566 September 18th

    Very nice and clear directions too. My question is: How would you apply this trim to a garment? Where is the recommended placement?

    Thanks, Nita

  9. Stephanie2X September 18th

    What can you use this trim on?

  10. User avater trinitynavar September 18th

    That's awesome!

  11. User avater Countess11 September 18th

    I learned this technique in a workshop given by Candace Kling about 15 years ago -- I highly recommend you take a class from her if ever possible, her book is good but her in person teaching techniques are superb. You will be glad you took any class she teaches.

  12. User avater LuvThreadsMagazine September 18th

    Senor King!

    You continue to astound and amaze your public, with thread, forethought, and your unerring eye for style.

    Can't wait to see what you do next.

  13. User avater WillaMcNeill September 17th

    Simply beautiful.
    Thanks

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