Dust Ruffle

Screen shot 2014-09-22 at 2.01.05 PMThe dust ruffle is fast and very simple to sew.  Let’s begin by

measuring the bed.  We will refer to the length of the ruffle as the distance from the head of the bed to the foot, the side rail; and from side to side at the foot of the bed.  The “drop” is the distance from the bottom of the bed rail to the floor.

The dust ruffle will be secured to the bed rail along its bottom edge with hook and loop tape.


Hook and loop tape 1″ with self-adhesive backing.

Fabric, depends on the measurements of your bed and if the fabric has a one-way pattern.

After measuring the lengths of the side rail and the rail at the foot of the bed, decide how much of a gather you want.  I wanted only a slight gather so I added 1/3 the length to each section.  For a fuller gather add 1/2 or even twice the length of the rail.

If you are using a plain fabric, or a check you won’t need to piece your fabric to get the needed length.

However, if you are using a fabric with an obvious direction such as the toile I am using, then the sections will need to be pieced together in order to reach the desired length.


pieced lengths

(1) To determine the how much you need for the “drop”  begin bymeasuring the distance from the bottom of the bed rail to the floor.  Mine is 11″.  to this add 3″ for the bottom hem, and 1/2″ for the top hem, plus 1″ for the loop tape.  (the top of the ruffle will be attached to the underside of the rail with hook and loop tape).  My fabric is cut across the width (selvage to selvage) and 15 1/2″ long.  I needed 4 segments.  Each segment is joined to the next using 1/2″ seam allowance.  Next measure and cut the lengths you need for each side rail and the foot.


(2)  At each short end, fold under 1/2″, then fold under again making a double fold hem.  Sew in place.

fold 1/4" along short edges, then fold again






(3)  On the wrong side of the fabric, using a ruler and pencil, measure and mark 1 1/2″ from one edge (this will mark the top of the “drop”) and measure from this mark toward the opposite edge the length of the “drop” (mine measures 11″).  Make a mark which will be the hem.

marking hem foldMeasure and mark the hem line at approximately 4″ intervals for the entire length of the ruffle.





(4)  Fold over using the hem marks as your guide and press the hem.  Also, turn over 1/2″ along the edge and press wrong sides facing.

Sew the hem in place using your machine’s blind-stitch; or if you prefer, top-stitch along the folded edge.

Blind Stitched hem

blind stitched hem

press hem fold line







fold over 1/2" for gathering

(5) Along the top edge of the “drop”, with right sides facing, fold over 1/2″ and press.

Using a strong thread, such as crochet cotton, measure a piece the length of the bed-rail plus 8″.  At 4″ inches from each end tie a knot in the thread (dental floss also works well for gathering).  Pin the “knots” at each end of the dust ruffle, then set your machine for the widest and longest zig-zag stitch.

Sew the string/thread in place by zig-zagging over it,  (The knots at each end will help keep from wasting string), gathering up the fabric as you sew.




Add Loop Tape along gathered edge

(6) Lastly, after spreading your gathers evenly, pin the loop tape in place along the top edge of the ruffle and sew using a long, straight stitch, along all four edges of the tape.


Congratulations!  Your custom dust ruffle is finished and ready to attach to your bed.

To Attach the Dust Ruffle:

Cut the hook tape the length of the bed-rails.  Remove the paper backing to reveal the adhesive (just do a foot or two at a time because it is quite difficult to remove if it is in the wrong place).  Place the edge of the tape along the back or inside edge along the bottom of the bed-rail.  Once the hook tape is where you want it, attach the dust ruffle by matching the loop tape’s edge with the edge of the hook tape and gently press into place.

The dust ruffle will remove easily for cleaning or changing to another ruffle.

%d bloggers like this: