Up until last week, I didn't know I could shirr with my machine. I don't know I'll be using this technique a lot, but I am quite happy to have learned a new trick... which I quickly passed on to the lovely young lady who comes everyday to learn.
I may have created a monster because all day, yesterday, she painstakinly, very slowly made rows and rows of shirring to make a dress like this one, which is really a 2 hour project if you are not a beginner.
There is no pattern to this dress, it's a square. Measure your bust, double the measure, in my case I took the entire 150cm width (where I realised the cheap fabric I bought had been printed on a slant) made a baby hem on top and used this excellent very simple shirring video. I made a side seam, a 4cm hem and I was ready to hit the beach in style. Just so you know, I took off 25cm in length after seeing this picture!
Just imagine this knee-lenght
She was shinning with glee when she finished, I found it extremely moving as I made a Ratatouille-like flashback to being 16 and felt her joy and pride. She has some of the qualities it takes to make a seamstress : extreme patience, some stubbornness, some pickiness and a steady hand. I wish her a gazillion little perfect stitches and hundreds of well-worn handmade garments.