What are smocks?
Smocks is the art of embroidering geometrical or figuratives shapes on top of tightly pleated panels of fabric.
This technique is a way of reducing the width of the garment at a chosen level, for example at the yoke, while maintaining a certain elasticity.
If it is possible to make smocks with a machine today, the result cannot be compared to handmade craftsmanship. Nothing equals traditional smocking.
The first step is to create tight and regular vertical pleats. Supple fabrics such as cotton, linen or silk are well suited to this technique. Three times more fabric than the surface of the smocks panel is necessary!
With the help of a manual tool named smocking pleater, the fabric goes through small cylinders enabling threads to go through. These are then used to gather the fabric.
However for gingham or striped fabrics, each pleat must be entirely made by and so as to put forward a color or another and achieve a perfect harmony!
Once the pleats are ready, the embroidery can then take place. The right side is of course the most important yet the wrong side must be just as clean.
Of all sizes, colors, and shapes, smocks offer unlimited possibilities and enhance creativity. They make the charm and success of our dresses!
To learn more about smocks and embroidery, the book Les Brodeurs will provide you with detailed information: Shop the book