Okay, this is so awesome I just can’t even believe it’s true. I didn’t figure this out on my own so I’m not even going to attempt a tutorial on it. Some brilliant lady explained this to me on a forum. And she needed to provide me pictures so I could get it through my thick skull.
I will explain how I did it, or try.
Normally when I gather fabric, which is often making dresses for Grace, I run a basting stitch and then pull my threads to get my gathers. See this tutorial that explains it perfectly. While this worked perfectly, it is very time consuming. And some of these dresses I make Grace, call for a LOT of gathering.
Okay, here is the new BRILLIANT way.
You will be sewing with a zig zag stitch. Set it on the fairly wide stitch, until you get used to this process anyway.
Take your needle thread, and instead of pulling behind your needle, like you normally would when getting ready to sew, pull towards you. Pull out enough thread that is equal to the length you will be gathering. (just eyeball it, I’ve never come up short)
Now, the hard part to explain. You will essentially be zig zagging over that thread you just pulled out. So, you will lay your thread (needle thread) down on your fabric, the fabric that will be feeding into your machine. But, you first need to pull just about an inch or so behind the needle. (it will be looped, and you can even keep the loop around your left finger to kind of hold it in place when you first start sewing.
As you zig zag over your thread, keep the thread in the middle. If you hold the thread tight while you are sewing on it, it will automatically gather the fabric behind your needle.
When you are finished, you have all your fabric gathered all ready. Just need to adjust a little to fit whatever you are attaching to.
Another great thing about this method of gathering is you don’t break the thread. There is nothing worse than gathering 60 inches of ruffle only to snap that thread half way through and have to start over!! 😦
So, here is a picture of my skirt I was gathering. This is RIGHT off the sewing machine.
So, now that you are more confused than ever…that’s it! Ha! I didn’t take any pictures while I was in the process, but if there is anyone reading this that needs pictures just shout. I can always add them.