I decided to have a go at shirring, and I'm glad I did. It's liberating to make something without any kind of pattern! I first made Elizabeth's dress. I'm not that in love with the fabric, but it was inexpensive and I thought the checks would give me a line to guide me. There also wasn't much on offer at my local fabric store the day I decided I wanted to try it. It was a good learning experience - I now know to hem the top of the dress before you sew the shirring!
Next up was Louisa's strawberry dress. Another cheap fabric, and it has small green dots which served as my lines to follow. I have a very basic sewing machine, without any fancy stitches, but it does have a shell tuck stitch so I experimented with that on the bottom hem. Although I was a bit wonky in one section, I'm reasonably happy with the end result.