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Spats

I finished my spats.  Probably about 5 hours work in them….  and a LOT of rivets!  🙂

… seriously… I was hammering those little buggers in for hours!..

They are knee-length, made from chocolate suede with mint green suede accents.  The pattern is on the outside of the leg, with the inside leg plain.  There is a matching one for the other foot obviously 🙂  but I couldn’t be bothered getting it ready to photograph.

I started taking photos of the process so I could do a sort of tutorial post, but it ended up requiring a lot of adjusting, so there was little point continuing a tutorial, because it boils down to trial and error really…

But to start with, put your boots/shoes on you’d be wearing them with, and get someone to trace your leg… (or if you want them the same size as some boots you have, lay them out, flat, and trace them.

So you have something like that….  then place some baking paper over the top and you can work out your template…. adding on extra for seam allowance and for the fact your leg is round, not flat..

However….

If you have large calves like me, you’ll probably find that you need to add quite a bit more on to allow for the 3D nature of the leg…… You could/should allow for that when tracing, and bring the paper up over your leg to make your marks midway up your leg (or wrap the paper around your leg and measure that way)…. but if you forget to allow for that and figure you can just wack a few extra cm on to allow for that – you may be disappointed to find you need more than you think…

What I did was cut out my shape in scrap fabric, sew the front seam, them have hubby tape them to my legs, with a piece of paper under it, that I used to work out how much extra I needed to add on to allow for my fat calves… and made a new paper template for that (which I’m not showing, it’s too embarrassing :P)

As it also turned out, I made things harder on myself by wanting to add a “modesty panel” behind the lacing… since the boots I’d be wearing them with are mid calf, and I wanted these knee high (so I didn’t want skin showing through)…. and because I wanted exactly the right amount of back lacing all the way up…. which meant that I had to make sure it was all measured out properly and that the modesty panel was included in the one spat side piece… I would not recommend doing it the way I did… as it meant my spats are slightly off centre at the back because I didn’t measure it correctly and it was really hard to get it right…. if you want something behind the lacing, I’d add that on afterwards…. it would be MUCH easier.  In hindsight, I could have easily rivetted the extra strip in with my lacing tie thingos, it didn’t need to be seamless… but, live and learn, eh? 🙂

But essentially, once you have your pattern, sew the front seam, then add your lacings up the back… add a strap under the foot to hold it in place, and you’re done.  Or if you want the button side version, then you need to figure out overlaps and all that business…  For something like these (link) you want to make 3 pieces, 2 full sides, then one part side that is the top-most scalloped edge piece.

Some links for those wanting to make some, and needing better instructions 🙂

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