Ruffled Top Tutorial

Ruffled Top Tutorial

Created by: The Sara Project

Hey everyone! Sara from thesaraproject.com, and back with another great sewing tutorial for you!

Here in Utah, the weather has just hit the 70’s, and I’m in full blown spring mode. As I have been making plans for my spring wardrobe, I’ve noticed that ruffles are having a HUGE moment in the fashion world right now, and I’m obsessed. I’m excited to incorporate this trend into today’s tutorial!

I’ve taken a woven shirt pattern, and altered the pattern to add in two rows of ruffles that run vertically down the front and back sides of the shirt. It’s super simple and super chic. I decided to use a gorgeous Liberty fabric for my top because let’s be honest, Liberty is the essence of spring! Let’s begin!

Ruffled Top

Materials:

Let’s begin by altering your paper pattern to add in the ruffle panels.

Step 1

On the front bodice pattern piece, decide how far over you want your ruffles to be from the center front. I decided on 5” for my top. Mark this on your pattern piece and draw a vertical line all the way from the shoulder to the bottom hemline of the pattern piece. (You can see my line highlighted in blue).

Ruffled Top

Ruffled Top

Step 2

Cut along this line we just drew. Make sure to label your pieces, bodice front and bodice front side panel.

Ruffled Top

Step 3

Tape some tracing paper along each inside edge of the blue line just cut and tape. Using a ruler, measure a ½” from each side of the bodice front and bodice front side panel to add a seam allowance to both front bodice pieces.

Ruffled Top

Ruffled Top

Step 4

Repeat steps 1-3 for the back bodice piece.

Step 5

Mark 1” from the bottom hemline on the bodice front/back side panel; this is where we will pin the end of the ruffles, leaving enough room for the bottom hem.

Ruffled Top

Step 6

Using the tracing paper, now we need to draw out our ruffle panel pieces. I decided to do a double ruffle, the front layer being less wide than the back layer. I also slightly decreased the width on both pieces from the middle of the panels to the hem/bottom edge.

a. To figure out how long your panels should be, line up your front and back bodice pieces at the shoulder and measure along the side of edge of both panels. Multiply this number by 2 and you have your length measurement.

b. To decide on the width, play around with how wide you would like your panels to be on your shirt. I decided to make my widest panel 3” wide, and tapered it to 2 ½” at the bottom. My front layer with the smaller width is 2” tapered to 1 1/2”. Once you decide on your width, make sure to add another 1” to both panels width for your seam allowance. You can either draw out the whole length and width of the pattern piece or cut it in half and make sure to cut the pattern out along the fold line going along the grainline to save yourself some time! (This is where you can have some fun. You could do one ruffle panel instead of two, or even make a wider ruffle for a more dramatic look.

Ruffled Top

Now that our pattern pieces are all ready, let’s start sewing!

Step 1

Pin the bodice front and back at the shoulder seams right sides together and sew.

Ruffled Top

Step 2

Next, we need to prep the ruffle panels. Start by finishing the outside edge length wise by ironing the raw straight edge (if you tapered your panels like I did) in ¼”, and then again at ¼”. Repeat for the bottom edges. Topstitch 1/8” along the bottom and one side folded edge to finish. Repeat for all ruffle panel pieces. On the other side of the ruffle panel (unfinished inside edge), sew two rows of basting stitch at ¼” and ½”, lengthening your stitches to about 4.0, leaving the thread tails long for gathering.

Ruffled Top

Step 3

Once your ruffle panels are all prepped, pin the center of the panel to the shoulder seam, and the bottom edges to the edge of the front and back bodice piece (remember to end 1” above the hemline).

Ruffled Top

Ruffled Top

Step 4

Now gently pull on the gathering stitches and evenly space gathers to fit the front and back bodice edge, pinning in place. Repeat to other side.

Ruffled Top

Step 5

If you are doing to layers of ruffle, repeat for the second ruffle layer, pinning directly on top of the first layer of ruffle. Baste the layers to the bodice front and back using a ½” seam allowance. (3 layers in total).

Ruffled Top

Step 6

Now pin and sew the shoulder seams of the front and back bodice side panels right side together. Next, pin the inside edge to the bodice front and back pieces, on top of the two ruffle layers.

Ruffled Top

Step 7

Sew at ½” seam allowance. Iron. When finished it will look like this:

Ruffled Top

Step 8

Now finish the top according to the pattern instructions. (Sew side seams, set in sleeves, hem sleeves, finish neckline with bias tape or facing).

Step 9

Let’s hem our shirt! Fold the raw hem edge in at ½” and the again at a ½”. Topstitch around the folded edge but make sure to start and stop at each ruffle, making sure to fold the ruffle out of the way when needed so that the bottom edge of the ruffle is free when finished.

Ruffled Top

All finished! Thanks for following along! Happy spring and happy sewing, friends!

Ruffled Top

Ruffled Top

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