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Tutorial Tuesday: Ruffle Front Shirt

July 13, 2010

If you can’t shop for yourself, the next best thing is helping someone else shop. The other day I went shopping with a friend who needed clothes for a job interview, and she ended up trying on a couple of t-shirts with ruffles on the front. Then and there I decided that that would be my next tutorial project, and here it is. It’s actually quite easy to do, but it dresses up an otherwise boring tee and I think it would look really nice under a blazer or cardigan.

Long-sleeved t-shirt
Sewing machine


1. Measure 6 inches from the shoulder and 2 inches from the armpit, draw a line, and carefully cut off the sleeves on both sides. Then take the sleeve, cut off the cuff if you have one, and cut it open at the seam. Cut off the seam.

2. Your shirt sleeve should be wider at one end. Starting at the wider end, measure two 3-inch wide strips, and one 5-inch wide strip at the narrow end. Cut with your scissors so that you have two strips of approximately 3 inches by 9.5 inches and one 5 inches by 8 inches. You may need to vary yours based on the available sleeve material.

3. Set your sewing machine on the longest stitch possible, and without backstitching, stitch across the top long edge of each of your ruffle pieces. Then pull on one end of the thread to gather your pieces. Adjust the ruffles so that they’re even and gather until the two longer pieces are 5 inches long and the other piece is 3 inches long.

4. Now take the 3-by-5 inch ruffle and and pin the gathered edge on the inside of the shirt collar, pin it, and sew it in place. Flip the ruffle over to the outside and sew it down right under the collar binding. This should be more clear if you look at the photos.

5. Measure 2 inches down from the collar and mark with chalk, then 2 inches down from here and mark again. Pin your other 2 ruffles to these lines, and sew in place.

6. Wipe off the chalk marks, and if you care, hem your sleeves. (I didn’t bother to hem mine, but I might change my mind and do it later.)

All done! Easy, right?

2 Comments leave one →
  1. July 14, 2010 8:40 pm

    This is super cute Rachel! Thanks for sharing.

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