A feature of the new skirt pattern – Kiera – by Designer Stitch is the technique of shirring the back yoke for some on-trend styling.
The pattern has the option of a shirred yoke (or a standard shaped yoke) but if your sewing machine “likes” the idea of shirring here are all the steps to teach you this simple but so so effective technique.
I would love to see your end results so why not email us some photos of your fabulous Kiera creations.
Shirring elastic comes in both black and white. It is a narrow elastic slightly thicker than regular thread. It will deteriorate over time so if you have had a reel for a while it is suggested you purchase a new reel for this project.
Place the reel of elastic into a round bottom container. Thread the elastic end into the hole of the bobbin long enough to give you a good anchor.
Start winding the elastic onto the bobbin – wind it so there’s a little bit of tension, but not tight. The bobbin should have the elastic wound evenly through the length of the bobbin spindle.
Once the elastic has been wound don’t be tempted to overfill the bobbin. And check that the elastic has been evenly distributed and not bunched in places.
Depending on your sewing machine the stitch length may have to be lengthened slightly. On your sampling try both a stitch length of 3 and 4 to ascertain the ideal length.
Set the bobbin into the bobbin case and thread as per your sewing machine manual or your usual threading process.
As we will be stitching equally spaced lines the quilters guide bar is a fabulous thing to use. It may have come as a standard accessory for your machine or can be purchased separately. If you don’t have this bar draw chalk lines to the correct side of your back band approx 1.5 cms (5/8″) apart(for the Kiera skirt).
The below image is my bar in place at the back of my standard presser foot.
Start your first row of sewing back stitching at the start of your row. And make sure you do back stitch properly. If not, when you stretch your fabric out after shirring the elastic will start to undo.
Continue stitching across the width of your back band and ensure you back stitch at the end of the first row.
Your first row of shirring may not be very gathered as the more rows you complete the more the fabric draws up.
Continue your rows of stitching ensuring you back stitch at the beginning and end of each row and stretching the fabric out flat.
As you are stitching your rows of shirring you will see that the fabric starts to gather up.
The below image shows the the additional rows of shirring
When you get to the last few rows it will be a bit tricky – just take your time and make sure your fabric is pulled out flat and taut.
I hope you have found my Step-by-Step tutorial helpful and I look forward to seeing all of your Kiera Skirt creations.
Here are some amazing photos to inspire you to make your Kiera YOUR OWN.
Cheerio. Ann from Designer Stitch. xx