Spring Ruffle Dress Tutorial

Spring Ruffle Dress (12)

I am so excited to share this tutorial with you!
Every year, in the spring, my mom and I create dresses for my nieces and cousins.
We were really excited this year because I picked up an old Serger from a thrift store that would speed up the whole process and allow us to make the dresses more professionally.  
So we decided to run an assembly line of dresses and have created quite a few for out local Farmer’s Market.  You can find them on facebook and many will be posted here soon.  

Did you see the Peacock Ruffle Dress last week???  WAY too cute!

We made some improvements to last years dress which was more of an a-line shape.  This time around we decided to have a wider bell shape and added a ruffle to the bottom.  The wider skirt and ruffle allow for more movement and twirling {even my boys, who acted as my mannequins, enjoyed the twirling}.  This is a fantastic, classic dress that is very versatile.  The shirred top and adjustable straps allow the girls to grow and wear the dress longer. 

Okay so here we go…

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First lets talk about measurements.

We generally will take a dress that we already have and measure the fabric allowances from it.  
We have also measured each child’s chest circumference and armpit to knee length to come up with our sizes.  I have worked at a children’s clothing store for a long time and draw a lot of inspiration and ideas from there.  It is amazing how simply put together some garments are.  

The following measurements are suggested for your dresses.  We created a template using craft paper for each size that we use over and over. Please let me know if you are interested in a template and it may be something that I can offer in my etsy shop.  For each dress you will be cutting four strap pieces, two trapezoid shapes and a long rectangle of fabric.  We use 1/4″ seam allowances throughout.  If you do not have a serger be sure to add extra allowances for zig zagging or folding over the edges of your material.

Feel free to right click on the pattern above to save and print it out.

Step 1.  Cut out your fabric pieces.  
We used this fabulous Daisy Fabric from Wholeport.  I have had so many compliments on these dresses!  
Be sure to check out the pink and yellow daisy dresses at the end of the post.

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Step 2.  Create a ruffle with the long rectangular strip of fabric.  Check out this post for ruffle making tips.  Sew one side of the trapezoid together, right sides facing.   

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Step 3.  Sew the ruffle to the bottom of the dress.

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Step 4.  Serge all of the edges and seams.

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Step 5.  Hem the top and bottom of the dress.

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Step 6.  Sew the final side of the dress together, creating a tube of fabric with the ruffle at the bottom.

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Step 7.  Shir the top of the dress.  You will need to hand wind elastic thread around your bobbin to do this.  You can find more details on shirring here.  For size 18 months – 3 we used 6 rows, size 4/5 we used 7 rows, size 6/7 we used 8 rows and for a size 8 we used 9 rows of shirring.  Each row is 5/8″ apart.  

Spring Ruffle Dress Tutorial (10)

Step 8.  Iron the top of the dress using the steam setting on your iron.  Using a zig zag stitch sew the straps onto the dress.  For the two smaller sizes, measure 2″ from each edge of the dress for strap placement.  Larger sizes, measure 2.5″ from the edge for strap placement.  You should have approximately 4″ between the straps on the front and back of the dress.  At this point I also sewed on a fabric label with the size of the dress at the back.  
I loved creating my own labels and will show you how I did it soon!

Spring Ruffle Dress (2)

This is the gorgeous yellow daisy fabric from Wholeport.  I love this print with all of the bright colours!

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My little model is pretty cute too.

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And how about this pretty pink daisy fabric from Wholeport?!  This one is my favorite I think.

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Way too cute and twirly!

Thanks for visiting and reading my blog.

Disclosure:  I was given this fabric to review but was not compensated in any other way.  All opinions are 100% my own.

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