i have always hated gathering fabric for dresses, aprons, bags etc. you know what i am talking about...baste two rows on a stitch length of 4 across the top of a piece of fabric that seems like it is a mile long, and then pull the end of one of the threads, then it breaks & you have to start over. well, check this out!
1. have your fabric ready & i use a thin cotton cording
2. set your machine on a wide zig-zag stitch. line up the cording with the gap in a standard presser foot
3. start stitching the zigzag over the cording. be sure that the cording stays in the "gap" of the presser foot and not to catch the cording with the needle.
4. drum roll please.......hold the fabric & give the string a tug!
seriously. that is it. this method is "sew" much easier than using the basing stitch & trying to pull the gathers with a thread. try it next time!