Friday, June 24, 2011

Knot Dress Tutorial

After seeing so many adorable dresses for little girls, I decided to make up a simple summer dress for Elsie. I love this knot top dress because the colors are a funky mix, it'll fit her for a while (first as a dress, then as a top), and there are no difficult zippers. Trust me, you can do this one! As for me, I'm new at writing directions, so be patient with me, and feel free to ask questions as I'm sure I left a few holes!

Here are the basic measurements:

Yoke: There's no exact measurement for this one. I just measured E's chest, and kept cutting out patterns and holding them up to her till I got a shape and size I liked. I made it to cover her chest, coming down to about her sternum. ** Just remember that it'll end up being about 1/4" smaller all the way around after you sew it.

(Cut out 2 for outside, 2 for lining, 2 from fusible interfacing)

Straps: L= Back of the shoulder to belly button, W= 1 3/4"
(Cut 2 for outside, 2 for lining)

Skirt: L= Sternum to however long you want it, minus 1 1/2" (That's for the coordinating trim at the bottom) W= Waist circumference times 2 1/2, divided by 2 (Cut 2)

Bottom strip: W = same as skirt, L= 4 1/2" (Cut 2)

Center band: L= 2", W= Same as yoke piece (Cut 2)

1. Sew bottom trim to bottoms of skirt pieces. Sew sides of skirt (right sides together).Then iron bottom trim in half lengthwise, folding it underneath. Then topstich near the seam of the skirt and trim fabric, being sure to catch the side folded underneath. (This makes a nice finished bottom.)

2. Sew along both long sides and one short side of strap, outsides and linings right sides together, then turn right side out, iron, and topstitch.

3. Next, assemble the yoke. Iron fusible interfacing to the wrong side of the outside yoke pieces. Sew center band pieces to bottoms of outside yoke pieces. Next, make a strap sandwich, putting back yoke outside and lining pieces right sides together, with the straps in the middle. (I chose to put my straps at an angle, but you could just sew them straight. BTW- the straps should be angled in, not out like in the picture)

Sew the curved and top sides of the outside fabric and lining, leaving the short sides untouched. Do this again for the front outside and lining fabrics, just without the straps.
4. Take one short, open side of the back yoke, and one short side of the front yoke, and sew, right sides together, the repeat with the other short sides. Now when you flip it right side out, you should have the whole top yoke piece. Iron and top stitch around edges.

5. Gather top edge of skirt, then evenly pin skirt to yoke (right sides together), and sew. I also added on simple pockets after.

6. Then, just cut small slits in the front of the yoke where the straps will be going through. Finish the slits with a buttonhole stitch.
The bright flowers add a touch of fab and fun. I made them using the pattern found HERE. Doesn't this red one with pearls just look so sweet in her blonde locks? So... what are you waiting for now?! In total I probably spent only 2-3 hours, and no money. And I'm sure there's some sweet little girl you know who would just love one!


  1. Oh my gosh! This dress is sooo adorable! I just have a little tyke right now... but if we ever have a girl I will most certainly try this out! Wonderful fabric combinations too! :D

  2. This is adorable! And you did a great job with the directions. I also love the fabrics you chose for this great dress that your beautiful baby!! Great project! Following you, now! :)

  3. I really like the fabrics you used - very cute! :) Knot dresses are one of my favorite styles to make for my girls because they are so versatile. Nice job! :) Smiles, Michelle

  4. This is so cheerful and cute! And such an adorable model too :-)

  5. What size would you say this pattern makes? Trying to make a dress for a 4-6 month old.

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