Gusseted tunic

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By far the most popular type of kyrtle had a gusseted skirt. They were warmer than the side split tunic, but required only a little more work to manufacture.

This design is recommended for any non-specialised undertunic or overtunic. Other designs can easily be made as variations on this basic type.

Manufacture Of The Gusseted Kyrtle

As always, remember to choose suitable fabrics (generally linen for the undertunic and wool for the overtunic), colours and weaves.

Cutting and construction pattern for a gusseted kirtle
  1. Cut a rectangle of cloth (A) to form a basic tabard; shoulder width and knee length, front and rear, not forgetting to allow an extra 1/2" or 1cm for the seams. Fold the strip in half and mark out the neck line.
  2. Next, cut out the sleeves (B & C), which need to be as long as your arm, cuff to shoulder, still not forgetting to allow an extra 1/2" or 1cm for the seams. The sleeve must be wide enough to put your arm in easily, a good tip is to make the sleeve width before folding and sewing the same as the shoulders of the tunic.
  3. You've simultaneously cut out the skirt gussets (D & E & F & G).
  4. If you're using a machine and wish to do so now's the time to zig-zag/overlock all the edges.
  5. Cut out the neck aperture and entirely finish the head hole. This is far easier to do now than later.
  6. Fold each sleeve along its top edge, and sew into a tube. Check the fit and adjust as needed. Adding a 4"/10cm square at the armpit can help to give plenty of movement.
  7. Fold the body of the garment at the neck/half way point, and sew in one sleeve. Then continue down that side, and sew in the gore below. Repeat on the other side.
  8. Slit up the front/rear of the garment, and sew in the front and rear gores.
  9. If working by hand, or want to better conceal your machining so far, you're ready to go over and thoroughly oversew what you've done so far, using an appropriate seam treatment.
  10. If you've been machining everything that can't be seen, and don't want to spend as much time going over by hand, it's a good idea to at least press open all the seams.
  11. Finally, hand finish all edges and hems so that no machine stitching will be visible externally.