How to Make a Dress Fuller at Bottom

Written by allison horky
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How to Make a Dress Fuller at Bottom
A-line dresses have a smaller waist and progressively larger bottom. (Brand X Pictures/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images)

Dresses that flounce at the bottom have added extra material to give the dress a more pronounced A-line. This style accentuates your waist, making it appear smaller. While skirt-fillers can be bought at the store, you can easily make a tutu-like wrap that adds volume to the bottom of your dress. When choosing material, keep in mind the amount of fullness you want to add, as some materials create more fullness than others.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

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Things you need

  • Measuring tape
  • Sewing needle
  • Thread
  • 1-2 yards of material

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Measure the smallest part of your dress at the waist. Measure the largest part of the dress along the bottom hem. These measurements will guide the amount of fabric you use when adding layers under the dress. The more you go beyond the length of the dress hem, the more material you are adding under the dress and fuller it becomes.

  2. 2

    Lay out the material you want to use. Tulle is a popular option, as it holds its shape well and is commonly used to fluff up a dress. Avoid materials that lie flat, such as cotton and silk. The material should match the colour and style of the dress.

    How to Make a Dress Fuller at Bottom
    Tulle is often part of a ballerina outfit. (Jupiterimages/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images)
  3. 3

    Measure one side of the purchased material to match the length of the bottom hem of the dress. This is the longer of the two meausurements you made earlier. Depending on the size of the dress, add a few inches to this measurement. The additional material will fold when sewn under the dress, adding volume in its folds.

  4. 4

    Measure along the other side of the material using the size of the dress's waist as your guide. Add a similar amount of inches to this side.

  5. 5

    Turn the dress inside-out. Thread your needle with a long piece of thread. Secure the extra material at one corner to the waist portion of the dress, threading the needle through an existing hem rather than the outer material of the dress. This will prevent the seam from being seen; an ideal place to start is at the back of the dress by a zipper.

  6. 6

    Wrap the material completely around the dress and secure the other corner directly next to the previous corner, making the two shorter ends of the extra material flush. The material now wraps the entire way around the waist of the dress. Secure the second corner with a stitch.

  7. 7

    Sew another holding stitch half way around the waist. This ensures that you will not bunch more material on one side of the dress compared to the other. Bunch the material along the waist and continue to insert holding stitches until all of the material is securely held to the waist of the dress.

  8. 8

    Hem the bottom part of the extra material along the bottom of the dress. Add more layers as you see fit with each extra layer adding more fullness to the bottom of the dress.

Tips and warnings

  • Sew the extra material to an elastic band, rather than into the dress, and wear it under multiple dresses.

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