If you’ve ever seen a pattern with little triangles on it like the drawing below, those are darts.
Darts are one of those things that most people think are really hard, so they don’t want to learn how to do them. They aren’t really hard at all- if you’ve got a baggy spot on a garment, you pinch it til it fits, pin it, and sew.
Once you get the hang of darts, they are indispensable when you’re making something that needs a tailored fit. They’re also a great tool for when you’re reconstructing something- sometimes all something needs is to be fitted a little better.
In our example, we’re making a pencil skirt. Because we’re using a woven fabric, the waistline kind of bags open at the top. Darts to the rescue!
This same process can be used for darts elsewhere, like in the bust.
To make your own darts, put the skirt on inside out and pinch the bagginess at the sides of the front (where the darts are drawn in the picture) and the same places at the back.
Try to make the darts as even to each other as possible. At the very least, make sure the front darts are even with one another, and likewise in back.
Pin the darts at an angle (following the arrow). This will make the skirt contoured to your shape.
This is what the dart looks like with the fabric laid flat.
Sew right along with the pins. It might help you to draw a line connecting the pin points before you sew.
* You’re actually supposed to start at the wide end and sew towards the point… that way you can backstitch at the wide end, but leave long thread tails at the point, which you tie by hand. But sometimes I like to break the rules.
Here’s your stitched dart. To make it lay flat, cut along the fold just to the tip of the dart, and press it open with an iron.