4 ways to make  ruffles and small pleats

Tutorial time 

I absolut love ruffles and pleats…
Ruffles and pleats add such beautiful detail to any garment. My love for ruffles and pleats started when I designed the Ruffle collar.
or maybe it started long before…
I am currently working on another sewing pattern with many ruffles/Pleats to add to the Cutline patterns collection.

Adding ruffles or small Pleats to your garment

You can easily add ruffles/pleats to any of your sewing patterns.
All you have to do is measuring the area you want to place the ruffle/pleat. This will be the final length. Then decide how full you want your ruffle to be, and make the calculation. You could, for example, add 1,5 – 2 or 3 times the measured length.
Now you need to decide which width you want your ruffle or pleat to be, and remember to add seam allowance.

Now you have to decide if you want to make ruffles or pleats, how you want to make them, and which technique you want to use to make your ruffle/pleat.

Method no. 1

The first method is particularly good with heavyweight fabrics but can also be used on lightweight fabric.

By this method, you enclose a cord by zigzag stitching over it like this:


Then pull the cord to gather the fabric.
Once you’ve attached the ruffle to your garment, you can take remove the cord.

Method no. 2

Set your sewing machine to the longest stitch length and sew along the raw edge.
Do not backstitch, and make sure to leave a long thread at each end.

TIPS: Stitch a sewing foot’s width from the raw edge (i.e. 2mm).
Remember to set your machine back to a normal stitch length afterward!


To make ruffle wrinkles, hold the fabric and then pull the thread to create wrinkles.

Make sure to spread the ruffles evenly.


Method no. 3

This method requires a ruffle foot. The foot is a bit expensive, but I can definitely recommend it.
I love mine and use it a lot.



The ruffle foot almost does the job for you. it comes with many options for adjusting both the depth and length of your pleats. 


Method no. 4 

This method requires a fork and a bit of patience.
If you are using a normal size fork you can make real deep pleats, or use a
cake fork to make small pleats.  
To make pleats use the fork to twist the fabric into a pleat.


This technique gives really nice pleats, but it requires more time and practice.


Thanks for checking out this sewing tutorial!

Happy sewing!


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