Tutorial: Quick Pleating (Faux Ruffles) for the Ruffle Challenged


I have to make a confession.

I can’t sew a ruffle to save my life.  And believe me, I’ve tried.  I’ve attempted them for the last 13.5 years.  *And* I have a daughter–I want ruffles on EVERYTHING.

I’ve tried multiple tutorials.  I’ve tried multiple threads and fabric.

I think I’m going to blame my machine.  Maybe the tension is wonky (the power cord is attached to the sewing machine with duct tape after all).

Anyway…So instead of ruffles I make fuffles (“faux ruffles”)  using pleats.  I like the look better anyway.I had some leftover fabric from my Mommy and Me Mother’s Day Skirts (Amy Butler’s ‘Love’ collection) so I made MM a quick pair of Thirty Minute Shorts.  Instead of hemming, I just added my fuffle.

You need to have a long piece of fabric (take the leg measurements and multiply by two).  On this pair of shorts I don’t think I made my long enough and next time would do it differently.  Note to self: you can always cut off the excess, but you can’t add length.  Turn one of the long edges under and sew with a 1/4″ seam allowance (this is now going to be the hem on your shorts).  Cut this fabric in half.


For each leg: you just pin down a pleat where you want your fuffles.  {Look at the picture for details as it’s hard to explain, but easy to do}


The more pins, the more fuffles.  Sew the two pieces together with a 1/2″ seam.


Repeat with the next leg.Taa-daa!  Could it get any more girly?!  I do this with shorts, skirts, and pants.  So easy and such a cute detail.


I showed them to MM.  It was dinner time apparently.


Tomorrow she’s wearing her new shorts with a matching shirt I made.  {To make the shirt all you do is cut out circles in varying sizes and sew a button in the center to make a mod little flower}  All for under $5.  Pretty cute if I don’t say so myself.


6 Responses to Tutorial: Quick Pleating (Faux Ruffles) for the Ruffle Challenged

  1. Jess May 12, 2010 at 11:56 pm #

    These are adorable! I wish I had a good reason to try ruffles…!

  2. Kim @ seven thirty three May 13, 2010 at 8:02 am #

    I love this outfit. Thanks for the tut and for linking up with Sugar & Spice.

  3. Rachel May 13, 2010 at 8:19 am #

    I think it’s SO cute…By the way, stop by my blog to enter in a baby/kid related giveaway! 🙂

  4. Aly May 13, 2010 at 11:48 am #

    These are so cute. My girls would LOVE them!! They are on my list of things to try.

  5. The Starr Family May 14, 2010 at 7:02 am #

    So very cute… thank you for posting such an easy tutorial! Love the fabric too!

  6. Lanie Ree May 14, 2010 at 2:51 pm #

    Mmm, those look yummy. I can see why they were chewed on 🙂 I also have problems with ruffles, so I can identify here.

    Thanks for linking this up to Creative Therapy with Life in the Pitts.

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