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Gathering Fabrics for beautiful Ruffles

From Snow White to Bella, every one of the famous fairy tale princesses had one thing common. You must be thinking it is the Prince Charming… No, it was the ruffles in their dress. Ruffles never go out of fashion.

One of the main reason why ruffles are an evergreen choice for designing clothing is that they can make even the most unadorned dress look chic and effortlessly beautiful. A tiny bit of ruffles changes the entire outlook of the dress for better.

However, in the modern era, gathering enough fabric for ruffles and creating the design is slightly trickier or rather mathematical than designing a simple couture dress. More importantly, it is also essential to check whether the fabric of the dress and ruffles are compatible or not.

The right way to measure the exact length of fabric needed for creating the ruffles

First, take the exact measurement from one end to the other end of the material that needs ruffle attachments. Multiply three times more the fabric measurement, and that is the correct length of fabric required for creating ruffles.

For example, if a skirt has 50 inches of diameter, then the ruffle fabric length should be 50 inches X 3 = 150 inches. The reason for that is while ruffles are placed, due to the gathering of fabric, the length automatically shortens.

However, the length of the ruffle fabric can be increased or decreased as per one’s requirement. Generally, it should be more than double to give the apparel a better silhouette. The more the Ruffle, the more the fluffiness.

The next question you must be pondering upon is exactly where ruffles can be used?

Yes, Google related images, and all those Disney Princess does give us a bit of an idea, but we still get confused. Well, ruffles work well with any design.

You can add ruffles to your sleeves or the skirt hemline or even the waist and bodice. It is all about your imagination. Ruffles can never fail, its color or lousy design that does.

Designs that are best suited for creating the right voluptuous effects include -

  • Single edge ruffle is the most versatile and commonly chosen design that goes perfectly well with any fabric or design. The slight bounce along with a frill-like appearance gives a cute and girl-next-door vibe to the dress. Lace ruffles are best suited for this design.
  • Circular Ruffle creates a wave-like an appearance and gives a natural bounce to the lower portion of any dress below the waist length. Circular Ruffles works well with stretch sequin fabrics due to the physical form fitting ability of the stretch fabric.
  • Double Ruffle works best with lightweight and smooth fabrics like Silk and chiffon. It creates a beautiful rippling effect along with adding just the right amount of volume.
  • Ruffles with header work best with fitted tops, and mid-length body fitted skirts. This design generally accentuates the curves better and is slightly more girly to look at.

The most important question many might be wondering about is how exactly one should gather the fabrics to create the perfect ruffles?

Frankly, there is no secret as to how to do it. It is all about imagining what you want in your dress. However having said that, gathering fabric for ruffles always follows a specific pattern. Beginners can go through the natural and concise step-by-step breakdown of the procedure mentioned below.

It is crucial to decide the fabric material and color beforehand because the color and make can create a beautiful or disastrous effect, so careful consideration is a must.

  • Step 1

Measure the fabric needed for the ruffles once you decide the exact design that you want.  If you are still confused, you can always check Pinterest or Google it, and you will have plenty of inspiration.

Once the measured fabric is cut out and placed along the edges of the section where the ruffles will be it is time to stitch.

  • Step 2

It is always best to opt for basting sewing technique while gathering the fabric for ruffles. This allows a uniform and symmetrical fabric gathering and also makes the final stitching much more manageable.

The rough stitch work is done; you can have a better idea As to how the ruffles will look later. Once it is in place and the ruffles are completely well positioned, the basting stitch can be pulled out after tearing off the knot at the end.

However, it is best to remove the hand stitch only once the machine stitch is in place.

  • Step 3

Start machine sewing along the edges where you want the ruffle effect to begin. Generally, it is about 1/8th inches from the hemline. In the case of delicate fabrics like Silk and cashmere, it is best to do at least two lines of Basting Machine stitch as these fabrics tend to wear faster due to excess weight.

  • Step 4

Repeat this process for the other layers too as that creates the specific look of the Ruffle. With a small pin make sure to separate the front and backstitch work. This will allow the gather to spread evenly instead of being clogged and uneven at a single spot.

Machine stitch the gathered fabric. Always remember to change the machine stitch to the largest setting while working on ruffles so that the stitch is placed widely.

  • Step 5

It is always important to check that the ruffled section and the fabric of the dress are an even and same length. Any discrepancy will spoil the look of the dress completely.

  • Step 6

Once the ruffles are even spread, it is best to lightly iron the ruffled section for ease of machine stitching.

  • Step 7

Machine stitch the lowest row of the Ruffle with a straight stitch from the inside out section

Flip the dress and the ruffles in your dress or skirt or top are ready for the world to see!

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