How to Make a Steampunk Victorian Jabot or Neckerchief

by Zeloco

I’ve always been a fan of the Victorian fashions and, surprisingly, not only the feminine part if it (of course I love the feminine dresses and corsets (who doesn’t?!), but I’ve always dressed in an androgynous way). So, naturally, I NEEDED a jabot.

I can’t say I’m a pro in crafts or sewing,. I usually work in a trial-and-error way and I have no official training in this, so don’t be scared of reading professional terminology – there’s none. I find this particular method working best for me, feel free to alter it in any way to suit your needs/style/etc.

Note: I use centimeters not inches. 1 inch is roughly 2.5 cm.

Step 1: Prepare your supplies.

For this tutorial you will need:
– Fabric scraps and/or felt (preferably the same or similar shade that the lace is)
– needle and thread or sewing machine, pins (optional)
– scissors
– ruler and pencil (optional)
– ribbon(s) and lace
– cameo/brooch/fun buttons for a centerpiece (or simply put a bow if you don’t have any of them)

Step 2: Make a base.

This can be whatever size and shape you wish it to be, but the end it should be a rectangle shape.
I’m going to work with a rectangle in these sizes:
A= ~4 cm
B= ~11 cm
C= ~9 cm

You can draw it down if you feel like you need to. I usually don’t, I did here so you can see more clearly. Add seam allowance all round and cut out.

Now sew all around to reinforce the base (use zig zag if you have a sewing machine).

Note: if you’re using synthetic material you can melt them slightly with a lighter, so you don’t have to sew (make sure you don’t inhale any funes, though)

All done. This will be the front, yes FRONT of the jabot

This is the back (it’s a bit awry, but no worries, you won’t see it once the lace is on)

Step 3: Add lace.

Here’s a picture to show you the general idea. Also you can mark the lines if you feel you need. Put the lace in rows starting from the bottom. When putting the next layer of lace – make sure the end of it covers the start of the previous one a bit.
The yellow lines indicate where you’re going to sew them on.

The first row. Take your long lace, take one end and fold it about 0.5 cm

Put the bottom part of the base with the -front- facing up like so:

Fold the lace over



and start sewing (pin before if you need) and ruffling

when finishing the row fold the end just like the start of the lace. I tried to make a scheme of how it looks.

Sew the next layer of lace the same way. You can also experiment by sewing the lace in zigzag going up in a one continous piece.

When you’re done filling up all the base it should look something like this

Step 4: Working on the top of the jabot.

You must start by cutting a round (cirle or oval) shape in felt (preferably) or in your scrap material (note that you must add seam allowance before cutting and work all around the seams if you’re not using felt). This also can be whatever size (mine’s roughly 2×3 cm).

After cutting out the shape you must measure the ribbon that goes around your neck. Try it on before cutting the length for a perfect fit (mine’s almost 80 cm). Find the middle point of your ribbon and sew it to the centre of your round shape.

Now you can embellish the round centerpiece.

I usually add smaller lace and ribbons all around it in several layers, sometimes I add beads and put a cameo in the centre, but it’s all up to you. You can simply put a giant bow or, if you’re so inclined, beadwork. You can skip it all together if you’re not into this and simply sew the ribbon straight to the laced base. My centerpiece turned out like this:

For a better fit I usually fold and/or ruffle the very top of the laced base. Here’s it’s only slightly larger, so I will just fold the sides as shown:


Step 5: finishing up

Take the laced base and simply sew it onto the bottom (make sure it’s the bottom!) part of your centerpiece.

For a more finished look you can sew another layer of felt on the back of the centerpiece and you’re done!

Hopefully this works out for you and thank you for looking! Now you must attend a teaparty to share and show off your crafty secrets!

Please check out Zeloco’s other projects here:

14 thoughts on “How to Make a Steampunk Victorian Jabot or Neckerchief

  1. Hi Zeloco(?),
    Geez your tutorial is just fantastic!
    Got a lot of info from the careful way your photographs and descriptions were portrayed (nice touch with the painted fingernails too! lol).
    After discovering to ‘hire’ one meant $70.00 (aus) hire fee (that was minimum fee!) decided I’d make one! The charactor’s costume in a film I’m helping with, calls for one, so this is a great help!
    Thank you for taking the time to share your knowledge and experience here with us all – much appreciated!
    Smiles Cobie 🙂

  2. This is awesome, I love jabots and this is the only good tutorial I could find! I can’t wait to go make a bunch in every color!

  3. I’m proud to say I’ve just completed my first jabot thanks to your wonderful tutorial. ^_^ Thank you for posting this.

  4. Thanks so very much for the tutorial. This is great, and I plan to make a few for my guy and myself. Perfect for a costume I have in the planning stages!

  5. I LOVE this!!! I will most deffinitely be making one some time. I love how clear your instructions are, you made it so easy to follow!! Thanks! 🙂

  6. WOW I never saw such an “easy to make ” tutorial.
    I’m so happy that you want to share this with the rest of the world.
    Thank you very much! I’m gonna make one this week ^_^

  7. Just to say thanks for the tutorial, I was a bit stuck, especially as i need one for a play. Once again thanks….

  8. i aiways loved victorain clothing styles…. thank you lookin every where on this sites no one shows you to make the jabot…
    thank you ..,yours georgous easy to followed step…
    im going to make me a lot of of difffrent ones i alwayd wanted one,,,,

    cant wait to make one…. thank you soooooo much…..

  9. Hells yes, this is so handy to find as I need to develop one for my graduate collection. I just have to go through my lace, trims and ribbons bag and begin making. I’m definitely going to take advantage of the Uni’s 3-d printers as well to make a cameo!

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