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Tips & Techniques > Bulk Free Elastic waistband application

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Posted by: Deepika
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About Deepika starstarstarstar
MA United States
Member since: 11/28/01
Reviews: 450 (tips: 14)
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Posted on: 11/18/02 5:24 PM
Review Rating: Helpful by 8 people   Very Helpful by 52 people   
This is my preferred method of construction in an elastic waist pant or skirt. The credit for this goes to Sandra Betzina.

1. cut a length of non-roll elastic 4" less than your waist size

2. butt the ends together and place a piece of cotton fabric (or a piece of gross grain ribbon) on the ends and carefully zigzag over the ribbon or fabric catching both ends of the elastic. Do this on the other side also to secure the ends properly.

3. Now in your pants or skirt, serge, zigzag or fold under 1/4" ( I prefer zigzagging to turning under, it eliminates all bulk) and neaten the edge, then place your elastic and fold the fabric over the elastic, sandwiching elastic between two layers of fabric.

4. using a zipper foot or a regular foot, sew through both layers of fabric close to the elastic edge(be careful not to sew over the elastic). Keep stretching and pulling the elastic as you sew. This way you get a very 'snug' casing and there is very little bulk which is impossible to get with the conventional elastic casing method.

Try it and you will never go back to the conventional 'elastic casing' method. I have never gone wrong with this method!

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sew1moremom said... (6/6/12 2:31 PM) Reply
I never get a nice straight line of stitching using this method. Can you give any help with that issue.
sew1moremom said... (6/6/12 10:40 AM) Reply
I never get a nice straight line of stitching using this method. Can you give any help with that issue.
Gwen1955 said... (3/10/11 3:31 PM) Reply
will this work for all fabric types?
kangamoo said... (6/23/09 7:45 PM) Reply
I always wondered if you could do it this way, but never heard any mention of it before. I'll let loose and try it now! Thanks!
Rebecca H said... (6/21/08 8:23 AM) Reply
Thank you, I was looking for a new method for the pants I am about to make. UR Awesome!
Ronda Rae said... (6/11/08 2:16 PM) Reply
This method is a great one! It's my preferred method, too. Slick!
AnneMarie60 said... (12/31/07 7:46 PM) Reply
I am about to give this method a go. Thanks!
ashleyanne said... (6/24/05 6:27 PM) Reply
for years I have used the casing method and hated to thread the elastic . thank you
PVA said... (7/23/04 9:48 AM) Reply
Thanks for this tip, Deepika, I certainly plan to use it since I use elastic waist in skirts & pants far more often than zippers!
ImSewMom said... (6/26/04 10:28 AM) Reply
Love this idea. I can't stand the bulk of overlapping elastic.
SouthernStitch said... (3/29/04 3:14 PM) Reply
Another way to really make this look RTW is to sew a 1/8" topstitch around the top of the casing. Makes all the difference in the world.
Pam Z said... (4/18/03 5:00 AM) Reply
Thank you, Deepika. I'm in favor of anything that reduces bulk at the waistline :)
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