Tuesday, August 17, 2010

How To Make a Pillowcase Dress


A couple of weeks ago, I invited two of my SAHM buddies over for a sewing playdate.  Between the three of us, we had nine children from age 4 months to 7 years old.  Despite the chaos, I managed to teach my two friends how to make a simple pillowcase dress for our daughters.  It was a really fun time of fellowship together!

I promised to post step-by-step instructions, so here goes:

Materials needed:

  • 1 yard cotton fabric
  • All-purpose thread that matches the base color of fabric
  • 2 yards 1/2”-1” coordinating ribbon (Get more if you want to sew ribbon around bottom of dress above the hem)
  • Fabric scissors
  • Pins
  • Basic sewing machine
  • Fray Check (optional)

  0151.  Cut two identical rectangles of fabric.  Length should be the desired length of dress from neck to hem plus about  3”.  Width should be about 18”. 

0162.  Place right sides together.  Pin fabric together with identical pins 6” from top on each side for sizes Birth-2T.   Pin 7” from top for sizes 3T-6.  Pin 8” from top for larger sizes.  With right sides still together, sew 5/8” seam from marked pins (armhole) to the bottom hem. 

018 3.  Press both seams open all the way to the top, including the armhole opening.

0194.  Reinforce armhole by sewing down one side, turning sideways across bottom of armhole, then back up other side.  

020 5.  Make casing for ribbon.  With dress still inside out, fold back a double casing a little larger than the width of coordinating ribbon across top of dress.  Iron it flat to make the sewing easier.  Repeat for other side of neckline.

0216.  Sew  both seams very close to bottom of casing.

0227.  Make hem.  Fold a double hem around bottom of dress.  Iron and sew.

0238.  (Optional).  Sew extra ribbon a few inches above the hem.  It’s still just as cute without it!

0249.  Cut ribbon into two 1-yard lengths.  Thread ribbon through casing on both sides with a safety pin.  

025 10.  I like to cut the ends of the ribbons at an angle and seal it with a little amount of Fray Check to keep it from unraveling in the wash.


Here is Grace modeling the dress I made for her at our sewing party.


You could also add a coordinating strip of fabric around the bottom, separating with a pretty ribbon.  The possibilities are endless!


Happy sewing!

1 comment:

Brittany said...

I have always wanted to make a pillow case dress...but I didn't have a daughter to wear it. Now that I do have a baby girl, I might just give it a try. We shall see, if they look anything like they are supposed to! haha!