Monday, February 20, 2012

My Shirring Experiment

I'm totally shirred out after making this sunsuit.

I was blog hopping like mad a few weeks ago when I discovered and bookmarked Rae's Baby Sunsuit Tutorial. It looked so simple. It uses two rectangles of fabric, has straps and the shirring (the gathering at the top) looked easy enough to do.

Boy was I wrong.

First I will show you the finished product as I surprised myself at my perseverance to complete this project. Then really I have nothing else to say apart from few 'lessons' I learnt along the way.

Alyssa has started to sit up by herself. Very Exciting!

Ok so my lessons...
  • Measure your baby. I used Rae's measurements of 16" x 19" for 6-12 months. Which is fine. Except I rotated my fabric 90 degrees and proceeded to make version one of this sunsuit. Obviously it turned out way too short.
  • If you are using the snaps that you sew on, make sure you use ones that are very strong. Thankfully I learnt my lesson on version one.
  • Practice, practice, practice shirring. But firstly make sure you know how to adjust the tension on your machine. This site helped me (I have a Brother machine) I didn't bother tightening the screw on the bobbin casing but did follow this piece of advice: "If I threaded the bobbin with the needle plate cover on, the elastic thread was not linking in correctly to the casing and I could not shir."
Changes to the original pattern:
  • It took me a week to work up the courage to sew two button holes onto the straps. I then attached the straps to the sunsuit, crossing them at the back. Upon trying the sunsuit on a baby who was DONE being my model, I decided that I wasn't 'quite done'. The straps didn't sit neatly and the buttons slid to the top of the hole. I chopped off the button holes (girraaaah) and sewed the ends to the inside of the top. I left it a few days before we had our photoshoot.
  • I noticed Rae had about 6-7 rows of shirring. Obviously I still haven't acquired the skill completely as I needed about 15 to get the top to gather up enough. 

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