After a couple of ruffle-obsessed weekends, I have finally produced a ruffled shirt. Here is is:
I won’t pretend that there was no struggle involved. I used this favourite pattern from the 1970s, so as to get a proper fitted 70s shape and collar:
At first I was cock-a-hoop to think I was only dealing with ruffles and not fiddly-diddly piping and impossible smile pockets and embroidered arrowheads. But pretty soon I realised that opting for a laid-on front band had made life very difficult – it was so hard to get the ruffles flat enough to tuck under the edge of the band neatly. 20 miles of thread later I decided it was time to invest in a ruffler attachment for the sewing machine and I bought this Janome ‘Ultimate Ruffler’:
It’s quite a contraption isn’t it? It didn’t help that, after quite detailed instructions about how to make sure the needle didn’t hit the foot, it was as if they’d given up. No word at all about how to make ruffles. But I found an instruction video online and once I got stuck in, it was easy. The attachment fits over the needle screw though and it wasn’t until the needle had dropped out twice that I realised that after a bout of heavy ruffling, the screw gets loose and needs a twist.
I know now, though.
I was determined to use rhinestone snaps – on the grounds that less is never more – but they wouldn’t behave and kept wobbling in the press so I wasted loads. Got them on in the end, though.
It was such fun to make and I’ve got lots more ruffly ideas in my head.
Now… does anyone know a matador who needs a shirt? I can do white as well, you know…