Saturday, February 14, 2009

Shirring 101

I had a couple of people ask me about tips on shirring after I posted the peasant tops that I made for the girls. So, I decided to make a short tutorial on how I shirred all of the areas of these shirts. Originally, I tried to use the method that the pattern suggested, but it just wasn’t quite turning out the way that I wanted. So, I played with it until I found what I liked, which is in the tutorial below.

1. You will need elastic thread for your bobbin only. Your top thread will be whatever you choose for your topstitch to be. You will also want to make sure that you hand-wind the thread (this I did find out from the pattern). You will want to wind your elastic firmly around the bobbin, pulling just slightly to give it some tightness. Then, insert the bobbin, and you are ready for the next step.

2. Next, you will want to make sure that you are doing your shirring on the right (top) side of the fabric, so that your elastic is on the back side of the fabric. Always make sure to start with the needle in the fabric that way you know exactly where it will start the row. Now, the position of your first row is your preference. For this example, I chose to make it about a half an inch from the topstitch of the hem. In the previous posted project, I started the first row about a quarter of an inch from the edge of the rolled hem.

3. Hold on to the elastic thread when you first start to sew (just so the elastic doesn’t shrink back into the bobbin). Then, do a quick backstitch to lock everything into place and start stitching around the edge back to where you began. Now, backstitch again, and then leave a little extra elastic before cutting because you will now tie both the beginning elastic and the ending elastic together in a couple of knots to make sure the elastic has a secure hold.

4. Now, you will move over and line up your first stitch line with the right edge of the presser foot, and follow the same process as in Step 3. One thing that you will need to do each time from this point on is make sure the fabric is flat as you are feeding it through the presser foot.

5. You can continue this process for as many lines as you would like shirred, depending on the project you are working on.

6. The last thing that I do (which I did learn this step from the pattern as well) is to use your iron on the steam setting and just shoot some steam onto the area that was shirred. This will gather the shirred area even more and give it a fantastic look and feel.

And VOILA!! You're finished and should have a perfectly shirred garment. If you have any questions, feel free to comment or email me!

1 comment:

catt410 said...

Thanks for the great tut.