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What kinds of petticoats are available for purchase on the market today?
Petticoats that are generally available on the market today fall into one of the following categories which are based upon the fabric a petticoat is made out of: Nylon Chiffon, Organdy (organza), Metallic Lame’, Organdy and Metallic Lame’, Organdy and Mother of Pearl, Net, Net and Organdy, Aurora, and Crystal (crystalline). The fabric gives a petticoat a unique set of characteristics, look and feel. In order to purchase a petticoat, you must first determine what fabric you want your petticoat made out of.
What is an adjustable top petticoat and how is it adjustable?
Many of the Malco Modes and Sam's Manufacturing petticoats come with an adjustable top. An adjustable top allows you to easily change the length of the petticoat and/or the tightness of the waistband. It gives your wardrobe greater versatility. You can wear the same petticoat with skirts of different lengths and they will all look great. These petticoats typically have 3 rows of casing which are open at one of the seams. When the waistband elastic is thread through the top casing, the petticoat is at its longest. You can easily remove the elastic from the top casing and thread it through the middle casing to shorten the length of the petticoat by 1 inch or thread it through the bottom casing to shorten it by 2 inches. All you need is a safety pin to pull the elastic through the casing. If you find the elastic in the waistband is not tight enough, reposition the button in the elastic to obtain the desired tightness.
What does a nylon chiffon petticoat look and feel like?
A nylon chiffon petticoat is very soft and comfortable to wear. The fabric is 100% nylon, sheer, and feels soft against the skin. They swish and swirl freely and easily when you dance and move about.
What choices and options are available when buying a nylon chiffon petticoat?
The nylon chiffon petticoats are made by two different manufacturers in the USA, Sam’s Manufacturing (styles 835, 885 and 500) and Malco Modes (style 580 and 582). Depending on the brand you select, you can purchase a 30, 35, 40, 45, 50, 70 or 100 yard square dance length petticoat with a hem made of lace or three-inch ruffling (rusching or fluff). Both manufacturer’s make these with an adjustable waistband and an adjustable length. For the least full nylon chiffon petticoat, select a 30 yard petticoat with wide lace (the lace lays flat). By far the most popular of the chiffon petticoats is the 40 yard Malco Modes with ruffling (adds fluffiness and bounce).
Should I buy the Sam’s Manufacturing or the Malco Modes nylon chiffon petticoat?
Malco Modes brand petticoats are available in standard and fixed styles, colors, sizes and lengths while Sam’s petticoats are made to order. If you need something quickly and Malco Modes offers exactly what you want, then you should purchase the Malco Modes brand petticoat. If you want a petticoat that is shorter or longer than the standard lengths, with either more or less yardage, with other color options and you can wait for delivery of your order, then you should consider purchasing the Sam’s Manufacturing brand petticoat. Both manufacturers offer high quality, durable petticoats suitable for square dancing.
How do I wash and dry a nylon chiffon petticoat?
Wash your nylon chiffon by hand in warm water and do not use bleach. They must be air dried. They do not wrinkle. When drying, lay the petticoat flat, do not hang to dry. By drying this way the petticoat retains its bounce and fluffiness. If you have a large umbrella, you can lay the petticoat on the umbrella top to dry. Once the petticoat is dry, it is ready to wear again.
How do I store and care for my petticoat?
Store your petticoats so that the air can move freely through the fabric. Do not store in cardboard or plastic and do not hang them on a hanger. If the petticoat fabric does not wrinkle or crease, then you can stuff 1 or more petticoats into a single petticoat bag for easy, more compact storage. If the petticoat fabric wrinkles and creases easily, then put no more than 1 petticoat into a petticoat bag and do not compress the fabric. Use a hand steamer to remove creases and wrinkles from a petticoat. New net petticoats, organdy or crystal petticoats stuffed into boxes for shipping will most likely need steaming. When wearing a petticoat, be careful of and do not sit on or near anything that might snag the fabric. Sitting on a wooden bench would be a bad idea. Over time you may find that the elastic in the waist band has lost its elasticity. You can purchase a replacement elastic waistband complete with button and button hole from ReSashay or purchase a drawstring cord for cinching up the waistband.
What is a Crystal petticoat?
A crystal or crystalline petticoat is made with a special crystal fabric that sparkles and shimmers. These petticoats are beautiful to behold. Wear this petticoat with a peek-a-boo lace skirt to show off it's color and beauty. There is a huge price differential in the crystal petticoats available for purchase on the market which directly correlates to the beauty of the fabric and the yardage of crystal fabric in the petticoat. Less expensive crystal petticoats may have an organdy bottom layer with crystal ruffles of fabric while the more expensive versions are 100% crystal fabric.
What length petticoat should I buy to wear under my skirt?
The length of a petticoat is measured from the top of the waistband to the bottom of the hem (do not pull and stretch the petticoat fabric when measuring). The length of a square dance skirt is measured from the bottom of the waistband to the bottom of the hem. Given the measurements are taken in this manner, purchase a petticoat which is the same length as the length of your skirt. The petticoat should be just as long as your skirt or just a tad bit shorter when worn. If the petticoat is too short it may not support the skirt well and the skirt hangs like a lampshade over the petticoat. If the petticoat is too long, it peeks out excessively from underneath the skirt and detracts from the overall appearance of your square dance ensemble.
What length skirt and petticoat should I wear?
The square dance industry has standardized skirt and petticoat lengths based upon waist size. Most readily available square dance apparel is sized based upon this standard. For example, if you require a size medium square dance length skirt, the length of the skirt will be 22 inches. The same applies to petticoats. Take a peek at the Malco Modes skirt size charts for more size information. If you are short and require a larger size, you may find that the skirt falls below your knees and is longer than you might like. If you are tall and require a small size, you may find that the skirt falls well above the knee. Most square dancers prefer to wear their skirts at or just above the knee. This is really a matter of personal preference. If the industry standard sizes do not fit well, you may want to have your apparel custom made to your specifications. Either way, you will serve yourself well and save money if all of the skirts and dresses in your wardrobe are of the same length. Alternatively, purchase petticoats with an adjustable top so you can shorten them when wearing your shorter skirts
What kinds of pettipants are available for purchase?
The 2 primary manufacturers of pettipants today are Malco Modes and Sam's Manufacturing. These two manufacturers also make petticoats. Many of the petticoat manufacturers make pettipants too. Malco Modes and Sam's Manufacturing offer pettipants in nylon, polyester/cotton and metallic lame' fabric. They are available in various lengths and all but the metallic lame' pettipants are shirred with multiple rows of lace.
Do I really need to wear pettipants when square dancing?
Yes! Pettipants are worn to retain modesty. When dancing, no matter how careful you are, sooner or later your skirt will fly up just enough to expose your undergarments. When that happens, I suspect you will feel so much better knowing that you are appropriately covered.
Which pettipant should I wear?
The fabric and pettipant length you chose to wear is a matter of personal preference. The sissy pant and mid-thigh length pettipants are by far the most popular among square dancers, in either the nylon or polyester/cotton fabrics. Pettipants made of nylon are very soft, comfortable and have a pretty sheen to them. Some folks simply prefer the polyester/cotton fabric. When worn for square dancing, pettipants are typically the same color as the petticoat so they blend in rather than stand out.
How do I select the right size pettipants?
Select a pettipant size based upon your waist size. The pettipant size charts on the ReSashay site provides a correlation between pettipant size and waist measurement. If you are in-between sizes, select the larger size. Pettipants don't look good and are uncomfortable when stretched too tight.
View the Sam's Manufacturing Pettipant size chart
View the Malco Modes Pettipant size chart
Which is the front side of the pettipant?
The Sam's Manufacturing and Malco Modes brand pettipants, except for the brief styles, do not have a front or a back. They do not have a "seat" in them.
How do I decide which pettipant to buy?
We have put together a pettipant comparison chart to help you decide which pettipant to buy! Your pettipant options may be limited by your color choice. Select a pettipant length and fabric based upon your personal preferences. You can view the pettipant comparison chart here!