Fabric: Curtain from the thrift store
Pattern: From instructions from a panel done by Jessica of Ties that Bynde
Notions: Safety pins and twill tape
Time to complete: About an hour
First worn: Not yet
Wear again? Hopefully
Total Cost: $10 – $5 for the curtain, $5 for the safety pins and twill tape at the panel.
Some time ago I attended a steampunk convention where Jessica of Ties that Bynde had a panel on how to create a bustle using a yard of fabric, some twill tape and some safety pins. Kits with or without fabric were for sale for anyone who wanted to learn how to create a simple bustle but did not bring materials with them. I picked up this curtain for the purpose of making something steampunk related. I love the light green color and how the fabric drapes. I also like that it is not meant to be a smooth fabric and I do not have to worry about ironing it. I do not like how reflective it is when a flash is used.
The creation of the bustle is very simple. Twill tape is pinned to a piece of fabric that is pleated to fit the wearer at the waist (or where you want the bustle to sit). More pleats mean less coverage but a fuller looking bustle, less pleats mean more coverage but the fabric will be stretched out more and it will be harder to make the bustle look as full. This first piece of twill tape is also serving as the waistband and needs to be long enough for this purpose.
To this first piece of twill tape, attach 3 more pieces of twill tape, going vertically. Then, play with draping. Pick a spot and pin the fabric of the bustle to the twill tape. Make it symmetrical. Make it asymetrical. Find what works for you. Since the fabric is being attached to the twill tape with safety pins it can be changed for future wearings. Personally, I am going to play around with the bustle draping a little bit more and then I am going to sew the fabric down to the twill tape to create a permanent bustle.
The pictures above show the bustle with a bustle pad. I also took picture without the bustle pad as I have not yet incorporated a bustle pad into my steampunk outfits. Here is what the bustle looks like without the bustle pad.
From the back:
From the side: