Princess Celestia – Ruffles


The ruffles for the Celestia dress were a lot easier than I expected.  I estimated an hour per ruffle, but found that they really only took about 1/2 an hour each.  That was excellent as it took 2 hours off my expected time to which I’d already added 2 hours.  That means that, as of the ruffles, I’m on schedule.  Of course, I haven’t done any of the detailing, but it won’t be that bad.  You’ll notice that all of my explanation photos are of the green organza instead of the blue, which was my first tier done.  That’s because I totally forgot that I was creating a photo log of each of them.  The process was the same for each color anyway.  Also, this particular section will have less photographs and more diagrams because some of these are harder to photograph.

Ruffles (min 4 hours)
☒  Cut out 4 length patterns (width will differ on each tier)

The skirt measures 31″ at its longest point which means that, divided in quarters, the tiers should be just under 8″ each.  According to this tutorial, each layer should overlap the next by about 3″, so I added that and determined that the tiers should be 11″ long.

☒ Measure circumference at bottom of each tier

The lowest (blue) tier measured 60″.
Green measured 53″.
Purple meaured 39″
Pink measured 27″

☒ Cut out each color to be 2x the circumference by the length + ½ inch

☒   Pink (1 1/2 yds) ☒      Green (3 yds)
☒   Purple (2 yds) ☒      Blue (4 yds)
Sorry, organza is basically transparent.

Sorry, organza is basically transparent.

☒ Serge Fabrics and hem

 ☒     Pink  ☒     Green
 ☒     Purple  ☒     Blue

I serged each of the yards together at the short ends then serged all the way around the circle:

Serging pieces together

Serging pieces together

The ring of organza.  Looks like a giant scarf.

The ring of organza. Looks like a giant scarf.

☒ Gather stitch each piece

 ☒     Pink  ☒     Green
 ☒     Purple  ☒     Blue

Before I started this project, I had never gather stitched.  I gathered fabric manually which, when that’s the only way you’ve ever gathered anything, is actually pretty easy, but it really sucks to explain.  Luckily, we’re doing H.M.S. Pinafore at school and the entire costume wardrobe revolves around gathering.  Because of this, it was determined that it was high time I learned how to gather something with a machine.  A gather stitch is way easier than I thought.  Basically, you stitch a section of fabric without tacking down either end of the stitch and leave long tails hanging out.  Then you make the same stitch 1/4″ down and parallel to the first set of stitches.

gather1Then you pull one string from each line of stitches (either the top or bottom, but not both) and pull.  It gathers like magic!


I drew it by hand in GIMP. It’s the best I could do.

☒         Attach to skirt (starting at bottom)

 ☒     Pink  ☒     Green
 ☒     Purple  ☒     Blue

Step 4 Step 5

To ensure I got all the layers on evenly, I put the pink layer on first

To ensure I got all the layers on evenly, I put the pink layer on first

Step 7

Luckily the ruffles fix the issue with the skirt not quite covering the hoop.  Hoping no one will notice once it’s on display.  The purple layer is actually chiffon instead of organza, and for some reason, it moved the most when I was sewing the ruffles on the skirt.  I had to take it off and do it again.  Possibly my least favorite part of the dress.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s