Thursday, June 28, 2012

Ruffle top revisited

A friend of mine is doing a craft challenge and she asked me to feature a project, so I'm revisiting this guy:

Yes, you can make this!

The challenge is to make it look simple, it's a competition to inspire people who feel they aren't "crafty" to do something. And this one is crazy easy, so what a good place to start! It's also a great way to learn a little more about your sewing machine.

The Married Life

For this ruffle top, you'll need:
- one tank top/halter top (this will be your base shirt)
- another old shirt with similar fabric that is the same color

Now for the execution: it's as easy as one-two-three!

1) Cut up the old shirt into strips, about three inches wide.

2) Now we ruffle them. Don't be afraid of changing the settings on your machine, it's really simple: It's also the coolest part, because you essentially don't have to do anything except adjust your machine. So to gather the fabric, simply set your machine to a longer stitch and maximum tension. 

Make the stitches longer but not the longest setting--they'll be way too tight. The top number is the stitch length on my machine (It's probably indicated by something like this design - -- --- ---- ----. Otherwise, look it up in your machine's manual)

Tension is the little wheel at the top. Set it to the max: now the machine does all the gathering for you!

You might want to play around with scraps before doing the real thing so you can get a hang of it.

Sew the strips about a 1/4 inch from the edge.

Don't cut the thread too short-- leave a nice long tail so you can adjust the ruffles by pulling on the thread if they're too tight or too long. 

If your strips are about 1 1/2 times as long as your shirt is wide, you're good. Now look at all those lovely ruffles!

(Don't forget to put your machine's tension and stitch length back to normal after making all your ruffles!)

3) Now tack them on with pins and start sewing them on (go ahead and sew over the same line) from the bottom up. You want them to overlap by about half an inch to an inch.

The top ruffle may need to be smaller depending on the neckline, etc. so adjust as necessary.

All done! I like it with a cardigan for some structure, but a blazer is nice and slimming too.

Now go have some ice cream, you just made yourself a new shirt! And go check out Iris' blog for more projects in the future, and enter the challenge if you feel so inclined.

The Married Life

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