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MN2106 Rowan / Sewalongs

How to add shoulder ruffles // a Rowan tutorial

How to add shoulder ruffles to the Rowan pattern by Megan Nielsen patterns

Hey everyone! Holly here! I’m here with a tutorial that has been a long time coming. I’ve been adding these sweet little shoulder ruffles to my Rowan bodysuits for awhile now (this is my fourth one!), and I finally got my act together and made a little tutorial to show you how to do it yourself. Not only is it super easy, but the best part is that it’s technically not just for Rowan! This technique can actually be used on any garment, woven or knit, that has a basic set in sleeve. It would also be cute on Briar, Floreat, or even Darling Ranges or Sudley! I just happen to use it a lot on my Rowan bodysuits, so that’s what I’m going to show you here.

Let’s jump right in!

how to add a shoulder ruffle to the Rowan bodysuit and tee by Megan Nielsen PatternsTo make the ruffle pattern, start by drawing a rectangle that is 16″ long by 2 1/4″ wide. Mark the very center of the long side.

how to add a shoulder ruffle to the Rowan bodysuit and tee by Megan Nielsen Patternshow to add a shoulder ruffle to the Rowan bodysuit and tee by Megan Nielsen PatternsUsing a curved tool, draw a curved line from the center mark down to one corner. And then again to the other corner.

how to add a shoulder ruffle to the Rowan bodysuit and tee by Megan Nielsen PatternsCut this piece out, this is now your ruffle pattern piece.

how to add a shoulder ruffle to the Rowan bodysuit and tee by Megan Nielsen PatternsCut out four ruffle pieces out of your fabric.

how to add a shoulder ruffle to the Rowan bodysuit and tee by Megan Nielsen PatternsPlace two ruffle pieces together, with right sides together, and pin along the straight long edge.

how to add a shoulder ruffle to the Rowan bodysuit and tee by Megan Nielsen PatternsSew together 5/8″ from the raw edge along this straight end. (Even though I’m sewing a knit, I still used a straight stitch because I’m not worried about this part of the ruffle detail needing to stretch).

how to add a shoulder ruffle to the Rowan bodysuit and tee by Megan Nielsen PatternsTurn around, right sides facing out, so that that seam is now enclosed. Press well.

Sew one or two lines of long basting stitches along the curved edge, 5/8″ from the raw edge. This will be threw two layers of fabric.

how to add a shoulder ruffle to the Rowan bodysuit and tee by Megan Nielsen PatternsMark the center of the curve with a pin.

Gently pull on the thread tail at one end and use your fingers to create the gathers.

how to add a shoulder ruffle to the Rowan bodysuit and tee by Megan Nielsen PatternsRepeat on the other end until you have an evenly gathered ruffle.

how to add a shoulder ruffle to the Rowan bodysuit and tee by Megan Nielsen PatternsAt this point you should have sewn your shoulder seams of your bodice and attached the neckband.

Lay your bodice down in front of you with the right side facing up. Place your ruffle down so that the gathered raw edge lines up with the raw armscye and the center pin mark of the ruffle matches up with the shoulder seam. Pin the rest of the ruffle to the armscye.

how to add a shoulder ruffle to the Rowan bodysuit and tee by Megan Nielsen PatternsRepeat for the other side. Carefully measure to make sure they are even! Adjust the gathers as needed.

how to add a shoulder ruffle to the Rowan bodysuit and tee by Megan Nielsen PatternsNow, you can stitch the ruffle to the bodice at this point to secure it, before attaching the sleeve. But I prefer to do it all at once.

You can now attach your sleeves as normal, the ruffles will just be sandwiched in between the sleeve and bodice.

how to add a shoulder ruffle to the Rowan bodysuit and tee by Megan Nielsen PatternsOne pin at a time, pin the sleeve to the ruffle and the bodice along the armscye. There will be three layers at this seam.

how to add a shoulder ruffle to the Rowan bodysuit and tee by Megan Nielsen PatternsSee the ruffle hidden, sandwiched in there?

how to add a shoulder ruffle to the Rowan bodysuit and tee by Megan Nielsen PatternsStitch together as usual, using a zig zag stitch or serger if you are making a Rowan or other knit garment.

how to add a shoulder ruffle to the Rowan bodysuit and tee by Megan Nielsen PatternsTurn right side out and press. Look at those cute little ruffles! Mine ended up being a little lopsided, but still cute. Even though I measured, one of the ruffles stretched a bit when sewing. So make sure you both measure it out and sew slowly and carefully!

You can now continue sewing your side seams, hems, elastic, etc.

how to add a shoulder ruffle to the Rowan bodysuit and tee by Megan Nielsen PatternsThat’s it! Of course, you can always modify this to fit your wants and needs. You could make a bigger, wider ruffle. Or make it longer so that it extends farther down the armscye!


// LOOKING FOR MORE ROWAN POSTS? //

We’d love to see what you’re creating from the Rowan bodysuit and tee pattern or the Rowan Curve bodysuit and tee pattern! Don’t forget to tag your creations #MNRowan and @megannielsenpatterns to share what you’ve been working on, and check out what everyone else is up to!

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About Author

Holly writes part time for the Megan Nielsen blog– sewing like crazy, creating tutorials and sewalongs. She has been sewing since she was a little girl, and has her degree in apparel design. Now she’s a stay at home mama, and spends all her free nap times at her sewing machine.

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Kelcey
Kelcey
3 years ago

Ah so cute! Thanks Holly