Sunday, May 27, 2012

Ruffle-neck dress tutorial

 Always on the hunt  for some cute summer styles for my two little grandys, when I kept spotting tons of darling versions of a ruffle-necked dress. Had to make it!!!!And  I am so hooked on PDF patterns!!
They say necessity is the mother of invention, so when I couldn't find a PDF pattern that was an instant download for a ruffle neck dress, I decided to do my own!!

Here, I will share with you how I made my own version!!

 Note: this tutorial does not tell you how to make the entire dress, but rather, how to add the ruffle to a pattern you probably already have!!
 You can use the front and back of a peasant style or a pillowcase dress that fits your child well. Add a border of contrasting fabric, a ruffle, or just leave it plain!!!

                 Things you will need:
A peasant-style dress or top pattern
Pillowcase style pattern
Fabric for dress--according to the pattern requirements
Fabric for ruffle--½ yard or less
½" wide elastic--1 yard or less
Bias binding--½ yard or less
Amounts are approximates
1.  Cut out your front and back pieces, cut out the armholes and stitch the side seams. Use bias binding to finish the armholes.
2.  To figure the amount of fabric needed for the neck ruffle, measure the top of your dress (between the arrows as shown) Double that amount, then add 24" to the total (12" each side to go over the shoulders). Ex--front 14"+ back 14" + 12" +12"=52"
3.  The depth of your ruffle depends on your preference.A good measurement for that is 4-6" On this sample, I cut a 4" depth. You will lose about 1" in the neck seam and the ruffle hem, so that left a 3" finished ruffle. That is probably a good size for smaller sizes, and 5 -6" for larger sizes.
4.  Cut your ruffle piece across the grain of the fabric, from selvedge to selvedge, by the width you determined in step 2 and the depth of 4-6". (For larger sizes, you will probably have to piece this) Sew the two short ends together to form a circle.
5.  Serge one raw edge of the ruffle. Fold along the serged line and press to the wrong side of the fabric. Stitch the serged edge.

6.  Press the other raw edge under ¼", all the way around, then fold again 5/8" and press. This forms your casing for the elastic.
7.  Fold the dress in half and find the center point at the top edge and mark.

 For the ruffle, the seam in the ruffle will be at the center back. To find the center front of the ruffle, position the ruffle so there is an equal amount of ruffle on either side of the back seam. Mark the center for the front of the ruffle with a pin.
(Please ignore the fact that the dress is obviously already attached to the ruffle in this photo. I forgot to take this photo in the process!!)

8.  Open the ruffle back out and lay the dress on the wrong side of the  ruffle, having the centers of the dress front and back aligned with the center points on the ruffle. Tuck the top edge of the dress into the casing, with the raw edge even with the crease in the casing. Fold the casing over the dress and pin in place.

9.  Stitch all around the casing, leaving an opening of about 1" to insert elastic.

 It will now look something like this:

 10.  Attach a safety pin to the end of the elastic and run it through the casing. Try the dress on child and adjust the elastic to fit. Sew the ends of the elastic together with several back and forth stitches to hold securely. Stitch the opening closed.

That's all there is to it!! I made this dress in less than an hour, so I will be making several more of these. Maybe as some tops to go with shorties!!

Monday, May 14, 2012

Back in the pattern making business

I have been away from patterns too long. As a matter of fact, I have been away from blogging too long, too!!! My sketch book is seriously getting too full!! So, I have finally positioned myself to do a little bit of design work.

I really had not planned for a sunsuit to be my next pattern, but I got inspired over this one and sunsuits
for little girls are everywhere this year, they really seem to be the "hot" style for this spring and summer.

This pattern is currently being tested and hopefully I will have it for sale by the weekend!!

Sweet Baby Jane


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