One of my favorite ways to bustle a wedding gown is with ties. This is often called a French Bustle, Victorian Bustle or Under Bustle. It doesn’t work with every style of dress but if you want a poof of fabric that falls over the bottom of the dress this is a beautiful way to bustle.
It’s the kind of bustle I had on my wedding dress that my mom made for me all of those years ago. Let me show you the dress:
A few weeks ago I started thinking about bustling (it might have been because I was looking at my wedding album) and I remembered a skirt I wore until I wore it out that had a similar bustling option but it went all around the bottom of the skirt to make a drapey effect. There were some draw backs to how this skirt was made so I started pondering some better ways to do it.
There came a point last week where I decided to stop wondering about things and just do it.
I began with my favorite skirt of all. A full circle skirt, maxi length, with a waist band with a finished width of 4 inches.
I decide to use a clear button to strengthen the spot where the ties would be holding the skirt up.
I used 1/4 inch plastic rings from the drapery section of the fabric store at the lower part of the bustle. Often there is a tie at the top and the bottom but I wanted to have the bustle stay in place for a long time and not have to be retied over a day of wearing and so I thought a ring would be a better choice with both ends of the ties at the upper part of the bustle.
I alternated the levels of the bustles so they were higher and lower around the legs but I made the rings and ties the same distance from each other so that the lowest part of the hem, when tied all around, would be mostly even.
But I also love the high low look when just the front is tied up.
So, of course, as with all of my projects, I have new ideas and questions. What if I tie the bottom of the hem up evenly around rather than alternating? What if I do this with a gathered skirt rather than a circle skirt? What if I use a few loops and pull the ribbon through – what would be the effect?