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Topic: questions about shirred dress  (Read 1453 times)
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« on: August 11, 2012 05:13:09 AM »

hi guys- this is my first question here so i hope i get a good few responses Smiley ok, there are a million tutorials online for shirred dresses and most of them are really good, but i still have 2 questions:
1. has anyone ever seen a shirred dress with SLEEVES or sleeveless as opposed to narrow straps or strapless?? i ask because i don't really wear strapless or narrow straps (skinny shoulders and protruding collarbones- not my best feature) but reaaaaly wanna make a shirred dress. but i suspect that shirring shows more with less/zero straps.
2. do you people cut the whole thing as a rectangle basically? i like a-line shape in most clothes. so feminine and flattering, and would like to know if must cut with a flare, (or maybe a ruffled hemline?) or the shirring will take care of that since it hugs the bust anyway. to specify, i like the look of :




but not this:


any tips for me? thanks a bunch everyone Smiley
« Reply #1 on: August 12, 2012 06:50:41 AM »

There's a shirred dress with sleeves in this thread https://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=412681.0

« Reply #2 on: August 12, 2012 08:29:00 PM »

thank you! hoping somebody will come answer my questions about the shape.
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« Reply #3 on: August 16, 2012 09:03:00 PM »

Hi there!

i made a shirred dress with short sleeves here:


 I used shirring over the whole bust--I love the look, and the back of the bust is shirred as well
My dress is an empire waist dress because that's flattering for my figure. I cut two large rectangles of fabric (the shirring will shorten your fabric a lot (even though it stretches. Better to make too much than too little. if its still to big just cut it down, but zig zag over before you cut so you don't lose the elastic thread you just spent time shirring.
I prefer sleeves, as I have arms I like to hide, but you could just as easily put on wide straps. In fact, that's probably easier than drafting the sleeves in the first place!

about the shape: it really depends on where you're going to do the shirring. the shirring does an awful lot of conforming to your shape. If you want it over your bust and your tummy--then you will lose any draping or a-line you wanted to put there, but it also makes fitting the bodice much easier because of all the give in shirred fabric. It will simply stretch more over larger areas and less in smaller areas. If the difference between your larger and smaller areas (like chest and waist) is really significant, you may have to make the a more A-line, or upside down a-line rectangle depending on your body type. Its hard to give you advice based on not knowing what your size type is.

looking at your links, it looks like the first dress just has a shirred back, which would just be a simple rectangle, and will conform to your body easily, especially if your bodice is styled and fitted such as that one is. For the second dress, it would appear that there is a long rectangular piece that's shirred and covers just the chest--and I'm guessing it loops all the way around. both would be extremely easy to achieve and extremely easy to add straps, sleeves, or whatever style you want to complete the dress.

but whether you feel like just doing the bust and adding a non-shirred middle and then a skirt, or a fully shirred from bust to hip bodice and then a skirt--or however you want to do it, it is really easy to add the two pieces together, and also very simple to add straps, sleeves, or whatever you like on top.

P.S. halter neck styles look awesome on gals with narrow shoulders (I have them too!)

hope this is helpful!
« Reply #4 on: August 17, 2012 12:45:42 AM »

wow. thank you so much for your reply- i really appreciate you taking the time to explain it all. although i have one question... i was under the impression that just cutting one piece would do? well i mean one for the front and one for the back so a total of two pieces?? i didn't think i'd have to have a separate waist seam in this. and no i only want the shirring to cover my bust. (just wanna add you did a really good job. i can see you were aiming to get that specific shape for the waist. it has come out very well- congratulations!)
« Last Edit: August 17, 2012 12:48:20 AM by n173 » THIS ROCKS   Logged
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« Reply #5 on: August 17, 2012 08:24:40 AM »

well, it depends what fabric you're working with. some fabric, below the shirring, will bubble and pucker as the shirring effect wears off below the last row. if you don't mind this, go ahead and sew it as one piece. however, leaving an inch below your last row, then stitching that to the rest of your skirt eliminates the weird puckery leftovers and leaves you with a clean seam that will separate the bust from the rest of the dress. in my opinion, a seam there looks better than uneven puckering.

you can use one piece all for the shirred part itself, just make sure to multiply your length of fabric because the shirring makes it smaller, even though it stretches. i measured a rectangle of fabric to fit all around my bust and back--my whole upper bodice--and after 18 rows of shirring, it turned out that it was only big enough for my front and i had to make a whole separate piece identical to that to go in back to get the look i wanted.

thank you for your compliments
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