Little Lizard King Ruchie Sew-Along Day 5

Hi everyone! Welcome back to day #5 of our sew-along. Today is our last day! We’re going to put it all together. I’ve also added a bonus tutorial today for adding belt loops to the Ruchie romper shorts!

Optional Belt Loops

If you plan on adding the optional belt loops to your start here!

We’ll start by cutting the desired number of belt loops.  I plan on using 4 belt loops on my Ruchie romper.  First, cut out 4 (or desired number) pieces measuring 2 inches x 4 inches.  Next, use the same method used to make the Ruchie straps or bias tape.  Take each of the pieces and fold them in half lengthwise and iron.  Then fold each side into the center to enclose the edges.


Next, enclose one of the ends by turning it in by 3/8 inch and refolding and ironing it again.  Now the belt loop piece should be topstitched using a 1/8 inch seam allowance to enclose the edges.


Next determine placement of the belt loops on the Romper.  For a size 7 romper, I placed each of the front belt loops 5 1/2 inches from the center seam.  For the smaller sizes you may want to decrease that measurement.  For instance, a size three might look better if the belt loops were placed 4 inches from the center seam instead.  Play around with it.  Just make sure to use the same measurements from the center front and center back.



Once you’ve marked your placement, go ahead and place the belt loops with the raw edges matching the top raw edge of the shorts.

Baste the belt loop in place using a 1/4 inch seam allowance.

The enclosed bottom edge will be turned under 1/2 inch as illustrated below.ruchieSALday5pic3

Once you’ve turned the edge under, pin and sew a U around the bottom of the belt loop to secure it to the shorts.  Make sure to backstitch when starting and finishing the U.  Repeat for the remaining belt loops on the front and back.


You have now attached the belt loops to the Ruchie shorts!

Attaching Romper Shorts or Peplum/Skirt to Bodice

Regardless of which bottom option you’ve chosen, we will proceed the same way from here!

Tip: for the romper option, mark the center front bodice and center back bodice before we get started. This will help us match up our center shorts seams with the bodice front and back once the romper shorts are gathered.

To gather the peplum/skirt or romper shorts sew two lines of gathering stitches around the top where the skirt will meet the bodice. Sew these two lines ¼ inch and 3/8 inch from the top raw edge. Alternatively, you can use the zigzag method (there is a fantastic description of this within the pattern on page 31).

Once you’ve sewn the two rows of gathering stitches, pull on the bobbin threads to gather. Distribute the gathers evenly all the way around.


Once all the gathers are even, turn the short, peplum or skirt inside out. Slide the bottom over the bodice. If you are making a skirt or peplum match the side seams of the skirt with the side seams of the bodice and pin all the way around. If you are making romper shorts match the center front and back pins we placed earlier with the center front and back seams on the romper shorts. Pin all the way around. Sew to attach the short, peplum or skirt to the bodice. Use a zig zag stitch or serge around to finish the seam.


Once the seam is finished, press the seam allowance toward the bodice. Optionally, topstitch around the waist to secure the seam allowance.


We’re finished! Stand back and admire that gorgeous Ruchie you’ve just created! Don’t forget to add photos of your completed project to the album in the Little Lizard King facebook group.

I’ve had such a wonderful time sewing along with all of you and I can’t wait to see everyone’s completed Ruchies! Thanks for joining me to sew up one of my all time favorite patterns!




Little Lizard King Ruchie Sew-Along Day 4

Welcome back to day 4 of our Ruchie sew-along. Today we’re going to tackle the romper shorts, optional peplum or skirt. By now you’ve decided which option to tackle today. I’m going to divide the tutorial from this point into two different sections depending upon which option you’ve chosen. Let’s get started!

Peplum or Skirt Construction

Go ahead and grab the skirt or peplum pieces that we cut out on day 1. Place the two skirt/peplum pieces right sides together.


Sew to attach on the short sides creating a continuous loop. Finish both of those seams by serging or using a zigzag stitch.


Hem the bottom of the skirt/peplum piece by turning the bottom edge up toward the wrong side by ¼ inch. Press. Now, turn that bottom edge up again another ¼ inch to completely enclose the hem and press again. Topstitch around the hem.


Romper Shorts Construction

Grab the romper shorts pieces that you cut out on day 1. Find the mark on the romper shorts pattern piece and transfer the marking over to each shorts piece.   Once you’ve transferred the mark, make a crease by pressing to create a crease.

The crease is going to be our guide for adding elastic or ruching to the romper shorts!

If shirring: Make sure the bobbin is loaded with elastic thread. On the right side of the shorts, starting ½ inch from the top and ending 1 inch from the bottom of the shorts piece, sew a line of stitching 1/8 inch from the crease on either side. You will need to backstitch to secure your stitches at the top and bottom. Once you’ve created both lines of stitching turn your iron on steam and steam it well. Repeat for both romper shorts pieces.

If using elastic: Grab the ¼ inch elastic and cut it ½ the length of the romper shorts. Using the crease you created before as a guide, place the elastic ½ inch from the top. Use a long zig zag stich to sew the elastic to the wrong side of the shorts following the crease line and stopping 1 inch from the bottom of the shorts piece. Secure the elastic by backstitching. Repeat for both romper shorts pieces.

Now, place the romper shorts right sides together. Sew to attach on both the curved edges (shaped like a J). Serge or zigzag to finish those seams.


Reposition the shorts so that the J shaped seam lines you just created run down the center from and center back of the shorts. Match both inseams right sides together and sew. Again, serge or zig zag to finish the seam.


Now we’re going to create elastic casings on the legs of the romper shorts. Turn the bottom edge of the romper shorts leg opening in by ¼ inch and press. Fold that edge in again 3/8 inch to create the casing. Topstitch around the casing but be sure to leave an opening large enough to insert the elastic, usually about an inch.

Use a safety pin or bodkin to insert the ¼ inch elastic. Overlap the elastic by ½ inch and sew the ends together stitching back and forth several times to secure.   Now, sew the casing shut. Repeat for the other side.

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That’s it for day 4. We’re getting so close! I’ll see you back tomorrow to add trims and put it all together!


Little Lizard King Ruchie Sew-Along Day 3

Hello everyone! Welcome back to day #3 of our sew-a-long! Today we’re going to construct the bodice.   Ruchie has the most beautiful bodice! In addition, it is perfect for embellishments! You might have noticed during cutting that the lining piece is much shorter than the bodice outer. That’s because we have to add all those gorgeous gathers! Today is a big day in our sew-a-long so let’s get started . . .

First we’re going to attach the straps we made yesterday to the bodice. You will need to find your bodice lining piece. Fold it in half and press it to create a crease. Once you’ve done that, refer to the chart on page 10 of the pattern to determine strap placement. For my size 7, I’m going to place the straps 3 inches from the center crease. First, measure three inches on each side and mark with a pin. Next, center the raw edge of each of your straps over each pin and pin them to the top of the bodice lining. Your straps will angle down toward each other creating a large V shape. Now, baste your straps in place.RuchieSALDay3pic1.jpg

Next , we’re going to create all that gorgeous ruching!

Take your main bodice piece and fold it in half and press to create a crease, just like we did before with the lining! Now sew a gathering stitch ¼ inch from each of the outer edges. I have a ¼ inch foot for my sewing machine, so I use the edge of my foot as my guide. Once you have created that line of stitching, create another row of stitches just to the inside of the ones you just made using a 1/8 inch seam allowance. Repeat on both sides of the bodice.

Now using the center crease as a guide, sew one line of gathering stitches on either side of the center crease using a 1/8 inch seam allowance.

Ruchie SAL Day 3 Pic 2

Now we are going to gather the bodice main to match the bodice lining by gently pulling on our gathering stitches. I like to tie the threads on the top of my bodice in a knot and pull from the bottom on the bobbin threads only. Once you’ve done your gathering you can pull on the sides of the bodice to help distribute the gathers evenly. Once you are happy with your gathering you can press the bodice main.

If you plan to add trim or embellishments to the bodice, now is the time to add them! I find that the center line of bodice ruching the perfect place to add a complimentary trim.   Pin your trim in place and sew to attach being careful not to crush your gathers.


Now, take a step back and admire all that beautiful ruching! Give yourself a pat on the back because it’s SUPER gorgeous!

It’s time to attach the bodice main to the lining. Take the bodice main and place is right sides together over the bodice lining. When you do this, the straps will be sandwiched in between the bodice layers! Sew along the top to attach them using a ½ inch seam allowance.

Ruchie SAL Day 3 Pic 4.jpg

Trim the seam allowance with pinking shears or clip the curves. Cut a small V in the center of the sweetheart neckline to prevent puckering. Now you can flip your bodice inside out and give it a good pressing.

Let’s work on creating the back bodice now. If you are creating a strap loop to place on your back bodice, we’ll make that first. Take your bodice loop piece (reference cutting chart page 7) and fold it in half lengthwise and press well. Now, take each of the long raw edges and press toward the center crease to enclose the edges. Press well and topstitch to enclose. You can leave the ends raw as these will be enclosed in the back bodice piece. Now, take your outer back bodice and press it in half to create a crease in the center back. We are going to use this crease to place our strap loop. Fold the strap loop in half so that the raw edges are on top of one another. Center the strap loop over the crease and pin. Baste in place.

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Take your back bodice pieces and place them right sides together. Now sew the back bodice pieces together using a ½ inch seam allowance sandwiching your strap loop between the two pieces.   Once you have sewn, press the seam allowance open.

Now we’re going to attach the front and back bodices.   Pull your bodice main away from your bodice lining. Now pull the back bodice main away from the back bodice lining. Place them right sides together and sew on each side to attach.

Ruchie SAL Day 3 Pic 6.jpg

Now, press each of those seams open. Turn your bodice right side out and press well! Topstitch around the bodice front and back all the way around. If you didn’t add a trim before you’ll need to sew down the center front to secure your ruching and remove your basting stitches now! I added trim earlier so I get to skip this step!Ruchie SALDay3Pic7.jpg

Now we’re going to shirr or create elastic casings on the back bodice. If you have elastic thread and opt to shirr, there is some great tips for shirring contained in the pattern in the glossary section. The rows of shirring will be placed ¼ to ½ inch apart.

To create the elastic casings, first measure up 5/8 inch from the bottom raw edge of the back bodice and make a line using a fabric pencil or chalk. Next measure up ¾ inch and mark another line. Continue marking lines a ¾ inch intervals until you reach the top of the bodice. Sew along each of the lines you created to create the casings.

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Take one of the pieces of ½ inch elastic and attach a safety pin or bodkin to the elastic. Open up the bodice and begin threading the elastic through the bottom-most casing leaving ¼ inch of elastic out. Sew to secure that ¼ inch of elastic down the side seam by stitching in the ditch. Once the elastic is threaded all the way through the casing, sew to secure on the other side as well.   You will skip one casing and follow the same steps until you have threaded all six pieces of elastic through and sewn to secure. Once finished, sew down the side seams again “in the ditch” to secure all the pieces of elastic in place.

Ruchie SAL Day 3 Pic 9.jpg

Lastly, serge along the bottom of the bodice front and back! Phew! We’re finished with the bodice. Today was a big day but YOU did it! Now stand back and look at that gorgeous Ruchie bodice! I’ll see you back tomorrow for skirt, peplum or romper shorts construction!

Ruchie SAL Day 3 Pic 9

Little Lizard King Ruchie Sew-Along Day 2

Welcome back to day 2 of our Ruchie sew-a-long! By now you will have pieced together your pattern pieces and picked out your fabric. Are you ready to rock and roll?

Let’s start by cutting out our fabric!

First, let’s find the cutting chart on page 7. The cutting chart gives the dimensions to cut out back bodice, straps, skirt and elastic pieces. You will need to cut out 2 back bodice pieces and 2 straps. By now you should have decided whether you are making the romper or skirt option. If you’ve chosen the shirt option you will need to cut out 2 skirt pieces. For the romper option, you will need either elastic thread or ¼ elastic cut to the measurements listed on the chart.   Here is where we also need to decide whether we’re going to shirr the back bodice or make elastic casings. I ran out of elastic thread so I’m making elastic casings. If you choose to make elastic casings you will also need to cut out ½ inch elastic as per the instructions on the chart as well!


Once you have cut out the back bodice, straps and elastic, it’s time to cut out the front bodice, front bodice lining and romper shorts if you’ve chosen that option. To cut out the front bodice, place it on the fold and cut as shown here:


Next, you will need to cut out the bodice lining. Be sure to fold your bodice pattern piece back to the lining cut line as marked on the pattern piece!


If you have chosen the romper option you will need to cut out those pieces now! For these pieces you are cutting 2 mirror image pieces. You can fold your fabric so that you can cut both pieces at the same time!

Ruchie SAL Day 2 Pic 4

Now that we’ve gotten all the pieces cut out . . . let’s get to sewing! We’re going to get started with the straps. The straps are created using the same technique as making bias tape. First, take one strap piece and fold it in half lengthwise. Once you have pressed it, open it up again. Take one short end of the strap and fold it to the inside ¼ inch and press. Then take each of the long edges and fold them in to meet the center crease you’ve just created.


Now you should have enclosed three edges of the strap! The raw edge is where we’ll attach to the bodice. Once you’ve pressed it well, go ahead and topstitch around the three enclosed sides of the strap. Repeat for the second strap.


That’s it for day 2! See you back here tomorrow for bodice construction!

Little Lizard King Ruchie Sew-Along Day 1


Hello! This is Cassie from Two Sweet Peas & Me and I’m your hostess for the Ruchie Patriotic Sew-a-long this week! I am so excited to sew-a-long with all of you this week! Ruchie is one of my all time favorite patterns. Ruchie is a vintage-inspired pattern featuring options for a dress, romper or peplum top.

Need some inspiration? Check out all these cute Ruchies!

If you are new to sew-a-longs, the process is pretty simple. Each day we will complete part of our dress or romper. I’ll be giving you a few tips and tricks along the way. Here is what our schedule will look like:

Day 1: Introduction, review the schedule, pick out fabric, choose your options and assemble your pattern.

Day 2: Cut out your pattern pieces and create the halter straps.

Day 3: Construct the Ruchie bodice and add desired trims to bodice.

Day 4 Construct the skirt or shorts.

Day 5: Add any trims. Put it all together.


Everyone’s favorite part is winning! Stay tuned for the specifics of the prizes for our sew-a-long!

Let’s Get Started:

Fabric Selection: Ruchie is best made from a lightweight woven fabric such as quilting cotton, chambray, twill, lightweight denim or linen.   You will also need ½ inch elastic for the back bodice casings.  If you choose the romper option you will need ¼ inch elastic or elastic thread for that part as well.

Choose your options:

In our sew-a-long you can choose to make either the dress or romper option. Decide which option you will be making. If you are making the dress you will only need to print the bodice pieces. If you are making the romper you need to print all the pattern pieces.

To assemble the pattern you will need to tape each of the pages together aligning the triangles as indicated on each piece. For the romper option you will need 1 front bodice piece and 1 romper shorts piece. If you are making the dress option you only need to print and assemble the front bodice piece. The remainder of the dress pieces will be cut tomorrow when we start cutting out our fabric!


Some of you may need to mash sizes. My daughter is tall and thin. Based on chest and waist measurements she wears a size 7, however, the length would be to short. I simply drew a line on the romper shorts pattern piece extending the line down to the 8 length but maintained the 7 width.

Once you’ve finished cutting out your pattern pieces and selecting your fabric, you’ve completed day 1! See you back here tomorrow for day 2!