I was going to say something here like, “wow, it’s been ____ since I’ve posted a tutorial!” But then I started scrolling back and decided the fill-in-the-blank was too embarrassing to put in type. So let’s just say: awhile!
So here it is, my first tutorial in WAY too long, and my first ever pattern made available just for you fine Crafterhours readers, for the low low price of FREE!
If you saw Susan’s posts on Friday, you know that we’re currently involved with a project to send simple dresses to little girls in Africa, dresses that are weather appropriate and don’t have buttons or zippers that can break. Well, it doesn’t get much simpler than this. If you have an hour and a yard of fabric to spare, you could whip up two of these racerback dresses and make a difference in the life of a little girl in need.
So let’s jump in.
First gather your materials. You’ll need:
- The Pattern! Get it here.
- 1 yard of knit fabric (You’ll have a ton left over but due to the direction of stretch, you’ll need to start with this much. You can fit a 12-18 month size on 3/4 yard.) Good knits for this project include jersey, stretch jersey, interlock, or anything with a little stretch. A baby rib (1×1) will work, but will be harder to keep from stretching as you sew. Steer clear if you’re a knit newbie.
- Coordinating stretch fabric for the binding. Rib knit is a great option here, but a stretch jersey will work perfectly too. You will need three 20″ x 2″ lengths of this, with the direction of stretch going lengthwise. A good option is just to cut off a 2″ length from selvedge to selvedge on 60″ wide knit fabric, if you have it.
- Thread that matches your binding fabric.
- Computer, printer, tape, scissors
- All seam allowances are .5″ unless otherwise stated.
- I made this tutorial using only my sewing machine, but for those of you who have a serger, feel free to use that for everything except the gathering stitch and hem. For those of you who don’t have a serger, don’t feel like you’re missing out. I actually find that this dress comes together just as easily and more accurately using a sewing machine because I have a bit more control.
- Finished garment measurements:
*this is the length for the larger size (the 8 in the size 7-8, for example). You will make a deeper hem for the smaller sizes so they will be an inch or an inch and a half shorter (and can be let out to fit for another year!)
Read the printing directions on the second page of the pattern before printing. Tape each page together by matching up the letters encased in half-circles. Be sure you’re taping within the pattern, not in the empty white space. You will have a front piece, a lower back piece, and an upper back piece. Cut out the appropriate size.
Lay each pattern piece along the fold of your fabric and cut around the edges to produce one symmetrical piece.