I’ve had this idea for a while now and decided to just go ahead and try it! So glad I did! Turns out that I love it! and it’s so simple to do. It really does not use a lot of fabric to make but it gives you lots of opportunities to use different fabric coordinates. For my A-line, I started with the pattern “Charlotte” by The Children’s Corner, but really you could use this on any A-line pattern you might already own
Let’s get started! First, you are going to trace off your front A-line pattern piece. In the picture here I am using a woven tracing material that doesn’t show up in this picture very well, but it’s actually laying on top of my pattern. After you have traced your pattern, line up your ruler to the center front fold line and draw a straight line on the far left side of your pattern piece that is parallel to the center front fold line.This line is going to be your new grain line because you are about to split this pattern into two separate pieces.Also, make sure you make a note on your pattern piece where you need to place on the fold line of your fabric.
Next, you are going draw out your line for the triangle split. I just had to “eyeball” it. I really don’t think you can mess it up.At the hem, it’s about half of the distance between the side seam and center front fold line. It’s slightly less than half the distance on the neck.
Once you have drawn your line to split the pattern I like to mark my new patterns with notes to add my seam allowances at the split. You could retrace your patterns out again with the added seam allowance but I just prefer to add it when I cut it out on my fabric.
Here’s the triangle cut out with the added seam allowance on the fold.
Next, you are going to cut your strips for the ruffles. Here, I have folded my fabric in half so that it is easier and faster to cut my strips. In my sample, I cut 3 strips sizes 3 1/2″x the 45″ width of the fabric.I used my serger to roll my hem but you might want to cut your strips a little wider(4″ x width of fabric works well) if you are going to finish your edges with a rolled hem on your sewing machine.
At this time you should prepare all your ruffle strips by finishing with some kind of hem on one edge and gather the other raw edge. I like to use my serger to gather because it will finish the raw edge too, but if you do not have a serger, you will need to zig-zag your ruffled edge to keep it from fraying in the wash.
I did not connect my strips because I did not want any seams in the middle of my dress ruffles.Starting at the bottom of your triangle measure up about 1 1/4″ from the raw edge. This will give you an idea where it needs to fall. Then at the top of your ruffle tuck under 3/8″ and do this to both sides.
Then flip over your ruffler.s.t.(right sides together), this will give you an idea where you need to start pinning your ruffle in place. I will then use my seam gauge to help me line up the rest of my ruffle.3 1/2″ worked for my project.
Here’s a picture of what it will look like when pinned and ready to sew.Be generous at the edges of your ruffle piece. I like to trim it after I have sewn and pressed it in place.
I sewed my ruffles down with a 3/8″ seam.Flip your ruffle down and steam in place. Then trim the sides of your ruffle off.
Next, decide where you want to position the next ruffle and once you decide, set your seam gauge to the measurement and pin the rest of the ruffle in a place like you did the first one.For my sample dress, I positioned my next ruffle at 2″ above the first ruffle, but your measurement might be a little different if your ruffle is larger or smaller than mine.Continue sewing your ruffle strips going up the triangle.I did not worry too much about where it would end up at the top. the first one I made, I continued my ruffles all the way to the top, but on this one, I stopped it about 1″ from the top. Both ways look fine to me.
After all my ruffles are finished, I like to stay stitch my ruffles in place down the sides so they stay in place when I sew them in the seam.
Now, take the other front side pieces and with r.s.t. sew one on both sides of your triangle.Now, I forgot to do it here in my picture, but you should add your sash in your seam at this point.Press seams.
My neck edge turned out a little wonky so I trimmed my neck edge to round it out more but I kept my shoulder width the same because it still needs to match the back shoulder piece.
Just so you can see that I make goofy mistakes too, I forgot to add my ribbon sash in the seam. No worries, I just opened up the seams where I wanted to insert the ribbon and re-sewed it in place.
Lay out your front piece you just created on your lining material and cut. For the rest of the dress, you will finish up by using the directions from your sewing pattern.