How to Sew a Cummerbund

Updated February 21, 2017

A cummerbund is a kind of gathered belt, often made of satin or grosgrain. Traditionally, a cummerbund is worn with a tuxedo for formal occasions. You can purchase or rent a cummerbund, but you can also sew a cummerbund. All you need is a strip of fabric and some basic sewing tools. Since a cummerbund is essentially a belt, it is helpful if imagine the fabric divided into four equal sections. The two sections in the centre of the fabric will form the front of the cummerbund. The end sections will form the sides and back of the cummerbund. Follow these steps to learn more about how to sew a cummerbund.

Measure the length of the ribcage. Add ½ inch. This measurement you find is the length you will need to cut for the cummerbund.

Cut a rectangular piece of fabric at least 9 inches wide by the length you found in step 1.

Sew a stitch ¼ inch from the edges, both long edges and short.

Fold over the long edges 1 inch.

Press the folded edges lightly.

Sew a row of gathering stitches ¼ inch from each end. These ends will form the back opening.

Sew a row of gathering stitches ¼ of the distance between the centre fold of the cummerbund and the end. These gathering stitches form the sides of the cummerbund.

Pull the gathering stitches to the depth that pleases you. Tie off the threads on the inside. You may want to adjust the fullness so that the cummerbund is gathered evenly.

Cut four pieces feather boning ¼ inch shorter than the width of the cummerbund. Remove the casing.

Take two pieces of boning and cover each with seam binding. Place the boning (covered with seam binding) over the centre of the side gatherings. Sew the covered boning into place over the side gatherings.

Extend the ends of the cummerbund ½ inch. Cut 2 pieces of ½ inch wide grosgrain ribbon. Cut each piece so that it is long enough to cover the gathered stitch at each end of the cummerbund. Sew the ribbon along the edge of the gathering stitches.

Use a catch stitch to sew the boning over the gathers at each end.

Fold in ribbon to the underside so that it covers the gathering stitches. Sew ribbon securely over the gathers.

Attach hooks and eyes to fasten the cummerbund.

Make and attach the underlining to the cummerbund. When you finish, you have managed to sew a cummerbund.

Things You'll Need

  • Fabric
  • Scissors
  • Sewing machine
  • Boning
  • Grosgrain ribbon
  • Hook and eye
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About the Author

Renee Vians has been writing online since 2008. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in English and journalism and language arts certification from the University of Nebraska-Kearney. Her articles have appeared on various websites.