I had been saving this vintage fabric I found at the thrift store for about 3 years now...waiting for the perfect project. I've been getting the itch to sew lately and as I was browsing through some of my project books, I came across this dress:
Two of my favorite dresses have shirred tops like this, and I wear them all the time. The shirring on the top is extremely comfortable, which is probably why I wear them so much, and its also very flattering on any figure. I was slightly intimidated, because it seems like it would be very complicated to create that kind of look. So I was completely surprised when I realized how easy it was.
This project came from the book Sewing In a Straight Line by Brett Bara. This is the same book I used to create the One Hour Skirt. It has so many useful projects, that take very little time, and each one is made using only straight stitches. I highly recommend this book, especially if you would like the full instructions. This entire dress took me about 2 1/2 hours, and it would have taken 30-45 minutes less, had I not been fighting with my sewing machine again. I love that thing, we've made a lot of nice pieces together, but she likes to cause drama, I'm not gonna lie. Drama queen to the max.
I think the fabric cost me a whole $1.50 from the thrift store when I bought it. I decided to make my dress shorter than the one in the book and I also added an 8" ruffle at the bottom and some straps.
I was blown away when I started working on the shirring. I bought this handy see through ruler that has lines in it to help you mark out where your guide lines will be. For this top, I did 8 lines at 3/4" apart. Then you hand wind your bobbin with some elastic thread ( which I found at JoAnn Fabrics near the other elastic supplies.) Start sewing your straight lines and it begins to bunch up on its own. Then you take the steam from your iron and hold it up to it after you've sewn all of your lines, and it scrunches up even more! Its amazing!
P.S. These shoes are by Swedish Hasbeens and I am in love with them. They are high quality and are super comfortable! I consider gold a neutral, so I think they go with everything!!
Now if only I could figure out how to make shoes...