I had a couple of cute maternity tops in my closet that I wasn't sure what to do with. We don't have plans on expanding our family, but I didn't just want to get rid of them. So I figured I would try my hand at shirring....again. The last time I tried shirring was almost 2 years ago and I vowed I would never do it again.
All of the blogs said it was so easy and addicting. I went out and bought (what I thought was) the elastic thread and attempted to shir a dress for Kaylee only to have it turn out disastrous. So after that every time I'd see "It's so fun and easy..." I'd say to myself, "They are LYING!" Yep, I was annoyed with shirring. But then I found out that I WAS WRONG and had bought the wrong type of elastic thread....and then I humbled myself.
I found the right stuff about 6 months ago and finally got around to trying my hand at it.
This is the elastic thread that you will use in your bobbin.
The left is what I used before. The right is the correct thread. In my defense, they kind of look similar, right? Ok, maybe not. The other stuff is "cording" not thread.
And so I threaded my machine with matching thread for the top and the elastic thread in the bottom and started and it was...a disaster. Awful. The tension was all wrong, I used a seam ripper to get some of the thread out and it made a hole in my shirt! So I cut off the bottom of the shirt and sat there wondering what to do. Maybe my first shirring project using knit wasn't such a great idea.
Then I remembered about this new thread that I bought. NICE thread. I bought a box of Gutermann thread spools in assorted colors. Not the cheapy stuff that I bought on one of those daily deal sites a few months back. I swapped out threads and that did the trick! It made sewing with the elastic thread and knit just as easy as sewing cotton fabrics. Moral of the story: USE GOOD THREAD! The other stuff was ok for cotton and projects that won't be washed on a regular basis. But use the good stuff for blankets and clothing.
I think it turned out cute. A little shorter than I anticipated (due to having to cut off the bottom and start over), and it has a raw edge, but it fits nicely, has a lot of stretch and looks more fashionable than my tented maternity top.
Now to finish up the black one and I'll have 2 "new" re-purposed tops! I still don't consider it fun and easy though. Maybe next time I'll try cotton fabric and see if it is easier before I get all high and mighty, ha!
Here is the tips and tricks tutorial that I used for my first attempt at shirring. She also has troubleshooting tips that I found helpful!