Last week I was scouring the web for a simple dress to make my daughter. At only 5 years old she is a dress fashionista….she loves dresses and wears them ALL the time. She has been asking (actually begging) me to make her a dress. Unfortunately my schedule doesn’t allow for me to indulge in a complex project (which I would love to do) so I wanted (needed) to find something cute and quick. I needed the most bang for my buck! Most tutorials I came across were either cute and time intensive OR quick and not so cute.
Not only is the finished product adorable….
but the design is so simple! I think it took me about 1.5 hours to make the first one (of course I had to make a second for my younger daughter). The second one only took about 45 minutes.
This is an absolute Must Do if you know a little girl.
TIPS & RECOMMENDATIONS
The directions are pretty straight forward but I did make a few changes:
If You Have A Serger:
If you have a serger, serge the raw edges – it just makes for a nicer seamline, especially the back seam where the zipper will be. And if your serger has a differential feed, use that for the gathering – it will save you lots of time.
For the Straps:
I found that I needed to shorten the straps for both of my girls about 3/4″, although this will probably differ from child to child. Be sure to try the dress on after basting the straps in place. You won’t want to be ripping seams after the fact.
I chose to add four lines of stitching on the straps to give them a different look:
I also found that you get a nicer fit if you angle the straps in towards the zipper on the back…just a little – the sides closest to the zipper should be about 1/2″ shorter (not straight across). Once again, try after basting, before sewing!
I think step 12 should come before step 11. You will want to press the short ends of the inner band piece in BEFORE top-stitching.
For some reason, I can never get inner bands to line up perfectly with the exterior so the stitch in the ditch technique never works for me. Instead, I stitched the band to the exterior above the top-stitching line. It is so much easier, guarantees you will catch that interior band and it is decorative! You could probably stitch a second line across the top if you wanted them to match.
And that’s about it!
Measurements used for the larger dress (6):
Band 25 x 3.5
Body 20″ x 44 (gathered to 25)
Larger Dress: Henna Garden and Daisy Path (Sandi Henderson)
Smaller Dress: Full Moon Polkadot and Fresh Poppies (Amy Butler)