Start by making a wide strap out of your fabric, as if you were making shoulder straps.
The width will depend on how big you want your ruffle detail to be – in this example I made my strap about 3.5 cm wide (so the piece I cut was double that + seam allowances; 8 cm).
The length depends on how ruffly/full you want it. First measure the length of the area the ruffle needs to cover.
- For the amount of gather you see in this project, multiply that number by 1.5.
- For a very subtle ruffle, multiply by 1.3.
- For a very full ruffle, multiply by 2.
- PRO TIP I: Pressing the strap with lots of steam every now and then makes it an incredible amount easier to do the gathering. Try it and you’ll see!
- PRO TIP II: If you get too excited and pull so hard that the thread breaks, no worries. Just sew a new basting stitch to cover the area where it came off. It can actually be easier to gather in smaller bits than the whole way with one thread.
- PRO TIP III: If your fabric is super grainy (not sure how else to describe the situation.. essentially if your fabric is very very hard to slide along the thread to gather it) you can try this hack: Take your bobbin thread and ‘saw’ into a candle with it. Basically you want to just gently pre-treat your bobbin thread with candle wax and then put it back on the bobbin. This will make it more easy to glide the fabric along. (I came up with this method maybe a year ago when working with a fabric straight from hell, but it was too late to go back on the ruffle plan).