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Wednesday, June 8, 2016

How to Add Ruching to a T-Shirt Hem

Recently, I sewed Ella a new casual, summer outfit using the Vintage V-Neck pattern by Blank Slate Patterns (affiliate links) and the free Sycamore Shorts pattern by Sew Like My Mom. Both patterns were quick to sew and the end results made Ella (and me) very happy!

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. I am a Contributor to the blog, Melly Sews, and was provided the shirt pattern and compensated for writing a post about the pattern. I was also provided some fabrics for use in a project of my choosing. All opinions stated in this post are honest and my own.

Since summer is upon us, Ella really needed some new t-shirts. Personally, I'm not always a fan of a basic, boxy tee on girls, so I was excited to discover the Vintage V-Neck pattern.

What makes the Vintage V-Neck pattern special is that the pattern includes pieces and instructions on how to achieve both a girl or boy look by adding some simple details.

While a v-neck shirt is stylish on both genders, I tend to find them most appealing on a female. Add the gathers at the cap and hem of the sleeve and you automatically give this top a sweet, feminie flair.

To give the shirt a more girly touch, I added some slight ruching at the side seams near the hem.

You can easily add ruching to any handmade or ready-to-wear shirt. Here's how!

Take a 4" long piece of narrow elastic, and starting at the stitch line of the hem, sew the elastic in place while stretching the elastic and not the fabric. When you release the elastic, the fabric slightly gathers.

Since Ella prefers to wear her shirt untucked, this gathering at the sides creates a faux curved hemline which helps add interest to the shirt at the hip and waist areas.

Sewn here in a size 8 and using a pink interlock knit fabric from Joann for the front and back and a newly released knit Remix print from Ann Kelle for the neck band and sleeve band, this shirt definitely makes a statement and stands out from any ready-to-wear shirt she owns.

Being unfamiliar with the techniques of sewing a v-neck knit shirt, I was slightly intimidated at first; however, using the pattern instructions and referencing this terrific video by Melly Sews on How to Sew a V-Neck T-Shirt, I had no problem at all with successfully sewing the v-neck band on this shirt on my first try! Yipee!

The Sycamore Shorts by Sew Like My Mom were a favorite in our house last year. Ella had several pair and fortunately can still wear them all, but she needed a new, slightly larger size pair to wear with her new Vintage V-Neck. This print, Dream Catcher by Josephine Kimberling for Blend Fabrics, was an ideal choice. Since I only had a half yard of this print, I omitted the pockets from the shorts, and by doing so, cut my sewing time of this pair down to 20 minutes!

While this entire outfit is made up three different prints, I think it works, especially for a little girl. Ella loves it, and that is all that really matters!

Have FUN sewing!

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