This tutorial shows how to make spats or gaiters from two layers of material, self lined, with the top and bottom edges rolled inside. The pattern shown is the one described in my tutorial, How to Draft a Pattern For Fitted Gaiters, but this method can be used for any spats or gaiters.
This pattern has the fabric cut on the fold for the opening edges, 1/2″ seam allowances front and back, 1/2″ seam allowance on the bottom, and 1″ seam allowance on the top. The fabric used is 100% cotton duck canvas in a golden brown color. It does not have a right or wrong side. I recommend using a sturdy fabric so it will hold its shape better. If you use a lightweight fabric, I recommend lining or interlining with a sturdy fabric like canvas.
The pieces shown here from left to right are the Outside Front panel, Inside panel, and Outside Back panel. I cut two of each Outside panel on the fold, and four of the Inside panel.
Each spat/gaiter should be sewn into a continual loop of: Outside Back panel – to – Inside panel – to – Outside Front panel – to – second Inside panel – return to – Outside Back panel
Shown above is the Outside Back panel, stitched to one of the Inside panels. The Outside Back panel is on top, open. The seam stops 1″ from the top edge, so when the top is turned it can naturally split rather than having to be slashed.
The above image shows one gaiter sewn into a continual loop.
Slash and notch the seam allowance as needed.
Iron open all seams. If you do not wish to sew all layers together later (matching along seams), then top stitch to either side of each seam to secure the seam allowance and prevent it from bunching inside when laundered.
With right sides together, pin together the bottom edge being sure to match the front and back seams. Stitch, and then notch and slash as needed so the spat/gaiter may be turned.
If you would rather not turn the edges, instead trim them to the desired length and bind the edge with ribbon or bias tape.
Turn the spat/gaiter, iron the bottom edge to a nice fold, and edge stitch to secure.
Mark each vertical seam far enough from the top to allow the top edge to be freely turned in. I used a 1″ allowance on top, so the mark is 2″ from the top edge.
Pin together both layers of the spat/gaiter, being sure to match up the seams. I use bent pins for this, so the fabric can lay as naturally as possible. Basting safety pins also work very well. Then stitch alongside the seam to hold the layers together, stopping at the mark made in the previous step.
If you are not comfortable doing this step it can be omitted, but in that case I recommend top stitching before sewing the bottom edge or turning so the seam allowance does not bunch up when the garment is laundered. The purpose of this step is both the prevent bunching of the seam allowance, and to quilt the layers together for greater stability.
Fold the top edge inside the layers, iron, and top stitch as close to the edge as possible.
After finishing the top edge, finish the top stitches along the front and back seams.
To finish the spats/gaiters, iron them so the front and back edges are clean and smooth, and then edge stitch to secure. I also top stitched at the width of the overlap to aid in button placement, but this is mostly aesthetic. The button marks above are for 1/2″ buttons, except for the top button which is 3/4″. Use any closure type you like.
For more images of these gaiters and others, visit the Steampunk Accessories portfolio page.
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