Facebook Email Pinterest Twitter X Instagram Tiktok Icon YouTube Icon Headphones Icon Favorite Navigation Search Icon Forum Search Icon Main Search Icon Close Icon Video Play Icon Indicator Arrow Icon Close Icon Hamburger/Search Icon Plus Icon Arrow Down Icon Video Guide Icon Article Guide Icon Modal Close Icon Guide Search Icon

Sign in or become an insider to access this story

Sign In

A Vintage Blend of Shirring and Velvet

A tasteful pairing creates softness and structure
Threads #185, June/July 2016

The blouse shown may date from the second quarter of the 20th century, but its embellishment can be adapted to contemporary looks. Velvet ribbons, each about 1 inch wide, provide the appearance of a framework atop a base of shirred fabric. The pairing is simultaneously soft and structured. In a higher-contrast colorway, this combination could look bold and modern. Fabricated in similar colors, as on the example blouse, the effect is understated and chic.

Threads has shown several other approaches to using flat, linear trim to create garments. Take a look at Kenneth D. King’s ingenious techniques with twill tape in issues 140 (Dec. 2008/Jan. 2009) and 179 (June/July 2015). Let’s look more closely at this blouse’s details.

Gather for texture

Shirred fabric gathered for texture.Shirring sets the tone for the garment. This blouse was made from a sheer fabric that may have been shirred commercially. The textile, which has a crepelike texture, may be rayon, silk, or even a gauzy cotton. Its shirring consists of three-row sets of gathering stitches, spaced about 2 inches apart. The tight gathering gives the fabric substance so it isn’t see-through, and the multiple stitching rows control the texture so it’s not too puffy. You also can shirr your own fabric. Experiment with the stitching-row spacing to get the look you want

Create structure with trim

Illustration of creating structure with trim.Part of this garment’s charm comes from the striped effect of the applied velvet ribbons. They are centered over every other set of gathering stitches and edgestitched in place.

It’s difficult to tell which came first, the beribboned fabric or the shirred garment. While the bodice ribbons may have been attached to the flat fabric before the garment was cut, the center-front placket ribbon probably was applied after the garment was constructed.

No darts interrupt the bodice at the bust…

Start your 14-day FREE trial to access this story.

Start your FREE trial today and get instant access to this article plus access to all Threads Insider content.

Start Your Free Trial

Threads Insider

Get instant access to hundreds of videos, tutorials, projects, and more.

Start Your Free Trial

Already an Insider? Log in

Log in or become a member to post a comment.

More From Threads

Discussion Forum

Recent Posts and Replies

  • |
  • |
  • |
  • |
  • |
  • |

Threads Insider Exclusives

View All
View All