Dress and Top Patterns | Featured Patterns | Perfect A Line | TDD Pattern Add Ons

How to Sew a Hem Facing

Sewing a hem facing is an alternative to turning a hem on a garment. It adds a special touch and is useful for lengthening an existing dress or top, or when you are sewing a garment and have alllllmost enough fabric but are a little short. It also makes hemming A-line tops and dresses simple – no easing stitches needed! Here’s how to sew a hem facing.

We’re using the Perfect A Line Dress pattern made with this adorable watermelon print fabric from the upcoming Tutti Fruitti collection by Maude Asbury for Blend Fabrics. You’ll be able to find it at Hawthorne Threads when it arrives any day now. It’s so perfect for a sweet little baby dress – other prints include lemons, pineapples and bananas! The fabric has been provided to use free of charge so we can bring you great tutorials like this one.

Image courtesy of Blend Fabrics

The Perfect A Line dress is a reversible dress pattern when made by the instructions, but we’ve made it unlined with an all-in-one facing at the straps and armholes and a hem facing at the bottom.

The Perfect A Line Dress Pattern comes in 0-24 months and 2-6 years

We’ll show you how to do the all-in-one facing and make this dress unlined in another blog post next week. You won’t be able to use the hem facing technique with the Perfect A Line until we have both parts of the tutorial up but it’s good to read through it now so you understand how to sew a hem facing, and you can use it with your other unlined garment patterns – even those with a simple gathered skirt from rectangular cuts!

Because the Perfect A Line Dress pattern is drafted to be reversible, it has just 1/2″ seam allowance along the bottom hem. So, when we are not making the dress reversible, we have only 1/2″ to use as a hem allowance. You could press up a narrow 1/4″ hem, but I prefer a deeper hem, so am going to create a hem facing.

How to Sew A Hem Facing

First, make a pattern piece for your hem facing by using the dress front or back pattern piece – the hems on the two are the same on the Perfect A Line and many other patterns – when in doubt, trace off separate facings from the front and back and remember to label them. I measured 2.5″ up from the hem all along the bottom in order to have a 1.5″ finished hem – you can make this wider or narrower as you wish. Draw a line parallel to the original hemline.

Then cut along this line to make your new hem facing pattern piece. Be sure to mark your “fold” edge as soon as you create the pattern piece, as it’s easy to get this piece turned around the wrong way. Then make Tie Dye Diva proud and label your pattern piece as Hem Facing, Cut 2 on Fold.

Next  – you guessed it, use the pattern piece to cut 2 facings on the fold. You can use same fabric, a contrasting fabric, or any woven fabric of a similar weight.

With right sides together, sew the facings together along their short edges and press the seams open.

Press the top (smaller) edge of this facing “loop” under 1/2″ to the wrong side.

With right sides together, place the facing around the dress, aligning the raw bottom edges. Sew around using a 1/2″ seam allowance.

Press the facing away from the dress, then turn the dress to the wrong side and press the facing against the wrong side of the dress. Pin it well so you don’t have bubbles! Then stitch the facing into place by either stitching around 1/8″ from the folded edge, or using a blind hem stitch if you prefer. Depending on your fabric weight and garment type, you may need to trim and/or clip the seam allowances before turning to avoid too much bulk or a wonky hem. (For the Perfect A-Line, I did not do either.)

Now you know how to sew a hem facing! It’s useful for lengthening garments, because you can let down an existing hem and use as little as 1/4″ of the original garment length to sew in a deep hem facing. So for example, if you have an existing dress that is hemmed by pressing under 1/2″, and then 1″, you can let out that hem, sew a facing on using a 1/4″ seam allowance, and lengthen your dress by 1-1/4″! It’s also useful if you are a little short on fabric when you are sewing a new garment. And, a hem facing allows you to sew a deep hem on an A-line shape without having to ease in the hem stitching.

Come back to the Tie Dye Diva blog next week to see how to make this reversible dress pattern completely unlined by drafting and sewing a quick all-in-one facing for the bodice. Plus, we’ve got an adorable cutie wearing this Tutti Fruitti A-line dress that you won’t want to miss.

Dress and Top Patterns | Featured Patterns | New York Minute Dress

Dress Pattern for Fleece – New York Minute Dress!

We’ve got a brand new pattern over at Tie Dye Diva Patterns today – the New York Minute Dress pattern, a dress pattern for fleece and other stable knits. You know all that fleece you got for an amazing price on Black Friday? You don’t need another new-sew blanket. Now you have something more awesome to do with it – and it will only take you a New York minute with our quick-sew pattern.

New York Minute dress pattern for fleece includes long sleeves, short sleeves, kangaroo pocket, inseam pocket, hooded, wide faced neckline and ribbing neckline options. You can finish the hem with a simple turned finish or use ribbing for a banded bubble look. Use the bonus tutorial to make a unisex top! Nine sizes from 12 months to 10 years. Enough options to keep you moving through that stack of fleece and crossing to-dos off your gift list with time left to catch up on Gilmore Girls.

We love New York Minute Dress sewn up in anti-pill fleece (polar fleece). It’s warm, has a slight furry nap that makes your kids look like huggable little teddy bears, and it holds up well in the wash.

Here are New York Minutes some of our testers made with fleece!

Here are some New York Minute Dresses some of our testers made with other fabrics suitable for the pattern:

You can catch NYM dress pattern at a special low price through Tuesday, 12/13. Enjoy!

Fair & Square Dress and Top | free tutorial | sewing tips | TDD Pattern Add Ons | Tutorials

Easy Placket Tutorial – Avoiding the Continuous Lap Placket (if you must!)

Today we have an easy placket tutorial for you. We’ve done a few continuous lap placket tutorials here for the skirt portion of a dress or back of a top. I love them! Some people don’t. So here’s a way to do a very simple alternative to the placket.  It’s not my preferred method because it needs some advance planning, requires a center back seam, and is not as durable as a continuous lap. However, it’s perfectly acceptable, so if you’d like to learn, read on!


Easy Placket Tutorial

You’ll just need a pattern with no placket or a continuous lap placket, and a sincere dislike of continuous lap. I am using the Fair & Square Dress and Top Pattern for Baby, which ordinarily uses a continuous lap placket.

First, you’ll need to create a center back seam. So, cut your back skirt piece 1” wider than given in the pattern instructions, then cut this back skirt into two equal halves vertically. This will give you an extra ½” at center back for a seam allowance. Finish the center back edges of both skirt back pieces, either with a serger, zigzag stitch, or pinking shears.


With right sides together, sew (don’t use a serger) the pieces together along center back using a ½” seam allowance. Begin at the bottom, and sew up to a point that is 2” from the top edge. Backstitch to secure your stitches.


Press the seam open. Topstitch around the opening to secure it.



That’s all there is to this easy placket tutorial! You can see this opening at left below, and how it looks when the dress is buttoned/snapped also.

That was so quick, let’s have some more fun and learn another new trick! I’m using this adorable The Promise of Spring collection by Cori Dantini for Blend Fabrics. Blend has provided it to me free of charge so I can bring you helpful free tutorials like this one.

We love our modeled photos from Heart and Soul Photography!

You are probably not sewing with Easter fabric just yet but you might want to snap up The Promise of Spring as soon as you can and stash it away. It makes such adorable Easter dresses with its spring animals, teacups, and flowers. I see it in stock at Shabby Fabrics and several other online sites.





I loved the patchwork effect of the panel fabric so much that I created a patchwork hem band rather than the single-fabric band called for in the Fair & Square pattern. It is simple to do so I thought I’d show you with a quick patchwork hem band tutorial.


I chose 5 fabrics because I think an uneven number creates a focal point that is most pleasing to the eye. Check the chart in the pattern to see how wide (direction going across the dress) to cut the hem band for the size you are making, subtract 1”, and divide by 5 (the number of fabrics I am using). It worked out very evenly for this 12-18 month dress that 21” width minus 1” = 20”, divided by 5 = 4”. That’s the finished width of each patch on the hem band. Add back 1” seam allowance to each (½” on each side) for a total of 5”. So for each hem band (front and back) I cut 5 patches 5” wide x the 4.5” long given in the pattern.

Cutting the 10 pieces goes quickly if you create a cardstock template! You can fold each fabric so you are cutting the 2 you need at once and even stack a few fabrics.



Then just piece them together using 1/2″ seam allowance, trim the seams if desired, press them open, and fold the hem band with wrong sides together. Complete per the pattern instructions.


Sigh. Do you see my mistake? Look again, and don’t make it. If you have directional prints in your patches check to be sure they will be right side up when you are finished. I decided to leave this but it does bug me, especially because if I had read my own pattern I’d see the note and photo reminding me to check print orientation before attaching the hem band.

Thank goodness it is so cute on this little one that you’d never notice upside-down eggs!




TDD Pattern Add Ons | Tutorials | Zee's Tee

How to Make a Pokeball-inspired T-shirt!



We are all about Pokémon in our household. All 5 of us enjoy Pokémon Go, and my youngest is a fan of all things Pokémon – playing the card game, trading the cards, reading the books, watching the cartoons, and talking incessantly about HP and CP and XP and actually understanding it all.

So I had to add a Pokéball-inspired tee to his collection of Zee’s Tees. Here’s how I made this one.

How to Make a T-shirt that Looks Like a Pokéball!

You’ll need any t-shirt pattern (I used our Zee’s Tee shirt pattern for boys), red and white knit fabric, and scraps of black and gray knit fabric.

Zee’s Tee pattern includes three styles: Pocket Tee, Yoke, and Colorblock.

Though the Yoke view has a two-color scheme that might work for a Pokéball, I wanted to move the seamline down below the sleeves so the shoulders and sleeves could be all one color. So, let’s use the Pocket Tee view as a starting point. Print the Pocket Tee view (you can skip the actual pocket) and whichever sleeve length you prefer. I am using long sleeves.

Cut the pattern Front and Back 1″ below the underarm point. Add 3/8″ seam allowance to both sides of this cut edge.


Cut the bottoms from white and the tops from red. Join along the new seam, using a serger or other stretching stitch.


Then, the black stripe and the circles are simply appliqued to the tee. I highly recommend using stabilizer when appliqueing on knit.

Cut two strips of black knit each 2.5″ long and as wide (stretchiest direction) as the shirt front/back.


On both the front and back, align the top edge of the black strip with the underarm points, covering the seam between the red and white fabrics. Use a zigzag stitch that goes just off the raw edge of the fabric to sew both long edges of the black stripe to the front and back of the tee.


Cut 3 circles – a large black circle, a smaller dark gray circle, and a smallest light gray circle. This is my simple interpretation of what the light on the Pokéball looks like and reflects the colors I had on hand – yours may vary and feel free to use other colors or numbers of circles. I cut my largest circle 3.5″ diameter for this size 6 tee. (I wish I had cut it at least an inch bigger!) You can find something in your household to trace (coffee mug, can of beans, etc.) or search ‘printable circle templates’ for a variety of online sources.


Fold each circle perfectly in half width wise and lengthwise and mark the point where the folds intersect, this is the center of the circle. Stack the two smaller circles, aligning their centers.  Stitch around the small circle. I used a tight zigzag that goes just off the raw edge of the fabric, but since knit does not fray, you could straight stitch this as well, it does not need to be a stretching stitch. If you are zigzagging, go slow. Every 5 or so stitches, stop with your needle in the fabric on an outer ‘zag’ and turn the fabric a tiny bit until you have completed the circle. Now place these on the black circle and st`itch around the middle circle.

Applique – not my strong point! But my kid will love it anyway.

Center the black circle on the center front of the tee and stitch around the black circle to complete your shirt front.


Cut your sleeves and neckband from red fabric and finish per pattern instructions.

Catch ’em all! Wear your Potato Chip Pants in camouflage for best Pokémon hunting.



The Pokémon Go in-game camera can make some very fun photos!



Daydreamer Dress | Holiday / Costume | TDD Pattern Add Ons

How to Sew a Princess Elena of Avalor Inspired Dress – Tutorial


Got a little princess determined to be Elena of Avalor for Halloween? You can use our Daydreamer Dress pattern as a good starting point!

Princess Elena doll on Amazon.com [affiliate link]
Elena’s signature dress has a neckline ruffle, an ankle-length layered skirt with a ruffle-edged cutaway and a slim waist with a gold belt. (If you want to get technical, Elena’s dress actually has flounces rather than ruffles. As we do not have royal couturiers sewing for us, let’s stick with ruffles to make it easy on ourselves.)

Inexpensive quilting cotton/cotton blends are fine for this dress, and easy to work with. Double skirts and big ruffles get heavy, so go with lighter-weight fabric. You’ll want a red fabric for the main dress and a slightly lighter but closely color-coordinated print for the ruffles. Elena’s ruffles look like they have a Latin-inspired tile print, but a small floral or geometric will work. (The skirt ruffle cuts are 9” wide so you may need up to a yard of fabric for them).  You’ll also need white or ivory fabric for the underskirt and gold satin for the waistband strip and ties to take the place of the gold belt.

You’ll need advanced or better sewing skills to make the adjustments needed. These instructions are for girl’s size 3 but you can use the measurements as a guideline for all girl’s sizes 2 – 10, which are the sizes included with the Daydreamer Dress pattern.

♦ Lengthen the front and back bodice pieces by 1”. This is shown shaded in gray.
♦ Cut the neckline ruffle 1.5” wider, so 6” x 42”.

♦ Create the sash ties as directed, from gold satin. Cut only 1 waistband strip, also from the gold satin.

♦ Construct the bodice using this alternate method:  Don’t press under the edge of the waistband strip. Lay it right sides together with the front bodice, aligning bottom edges, and sew. Press the seam allowance to the waistband strip and optionally topstitch.


Then baste the ties in place, leaving ⅝” free at the bottom edge. Join the side seams of front and back bodices.


Press under the armholes (see pattern, top of page 9). Complete all of Step 5 to add the neck ruffle. Set the bodice aside.

♦ Cut the overskirt as follows:

Measure your child shoulder to ankle or use the approximate lengths here: Size 2: 26”, size 3: 28.5”, size 4: 31”, size 5: 34”, size 6: 36.5”, size 7/8: 39.5”, size 9/10: 43”.  Subtract the finished length of the Daydreamer dress from the chart on page 2 of the pattern. That’s how much you’ll need to lengthen the skirt cuts …

EXCEPT we added 1” to the bodice so also subtract that 1 inch. (If you’ve added more, subtract that amount).

AND we are going to have a big princess-worthy 4” wide finished ruffle instead of the pattern’s 2.5” wide ruffle, so subtract another 1.5” (this should be good for all sizes). Don’t worry, here’s an example:

Our size 3 child is 28.5” shoulder to ankle. Subtract the 22.5” you see in the finished length chart on page 2. You get 6”. Also subtract the 1” we lengthened the bodice, so you have 5”, and further subtract the 1.5” we’re adding to the ruffle = 3.5”. So add 3.5” to the length of the skirt cut given in the cutting chart in the pattern. For size 3, therefore, you’ll cut the overskirts 17” long [13.5″ from the pattern plus 3.5″] x 29” wide.

With the overskirt pieces right sides together and the width of the skirt going across the top, draw a curve you like similar to the one shown and cut it away from both. I’ve left mine on the 1″ grid so you can see about how I cut the curve.


♦ Join the skirts along the short straight edge. Measure the edge to find the length from top edge to this seam. Multiply by 3, this is the total length of ruffle you will need.


♦ Cut ruffle strips 9” wide and join until you have the length you calculated above. Press in half lengthwise with wrong sides together. Taper both ends. I cut away 2.5” at the short ends, tapering down to nothing about 16” away from the short end.


♦ Gather the ruffle and attach to the overskirt.


♦ When the overskirt is finished, measure down the back seam from waist edge to hem and cut the underskirt pieces 2” shorter and the same width you cut the overskirt (from the pattern chart).  Sew the side seams of the underskirt and hem it with a ¼” narrow hem.

♦ Gather each skirt to the bodice width. Mark a point on the wearer’s right bodice where you would like the overskirt cutaway to be (if you look at Elena’s, it is not centered).


♦ Place the bodice, right side out, into the overskirt that is wrong-side out (it may be hard to tell but yes this one in the photo is wrong side out), matching the marked point on the bodice with the overlapped ruffle of the overskirt.



With the underskirt also wrong-side out, slide it around the overskirt.


♦ Join skirt and bodice and you are done! Add a ponytail with flowers, gold earrings and sandals.


Every Day Top | Featured Patterns | free tutorial | Potato Chip Skirt | sewing tips | Tutorials

How to Sew a Blind Hem (on Fabric.com blog)


We at Tie Dye Diva are SO excited to be the very first featured contributor on the brand-new Fabric.com blog! Today we’re over there showing you step-by-step how to sew a blind hem, both by machine and by hand. Blind hems are so versatile and add a professional look to your garments.


Our post features our Potato Chip Skirt pattern in Kaufman Corduroy 21 Wale and our Everyday Top pattern in Liberty of London Tana Lawn. We love how Miss Marlee just shines in this outfit for Fall! We’re so grateful to her mama for capturing these gorgeous photos for us.



The babywale corduroy skirt is a perfect candidate for a blind hem, as a normally-stitched hem crushes the nap and is very visible on the skirt. Blind hemming is also perfect for the delicate Tana Lawn fabric on the Every Day Top. (We’ve lengthened the original hem of the top by 1″ to make it a deep hem suitable for blind hemming.)



Head on over to the Fabric.com blog to read all about how to sew a blind hem!

Easy Peasy Peasant Dress | free tutorial | Knot or Not Headband | Pocket Tutorials | Storybook Pinafore | TDD Pattern Add Ons

Late for a Date Blog Hop, Free Heart Pocket Tutorial and Fabric Giveaway

[Edited: Giveaway closed, congratulations Brittany Webb!] Welcome to our heart pocket tutorial and stop on the Late for a Date blog hop featuring the Wonderland collection by Josephine Kimberling for Blend Fabrics! I hope you’ve been enjoying the whimsical take on a classic tale in this collection. These prints will be available soon at the Fat Quarter Shop. But, you can win then right here.  Be sure to read all the way to the bottom for your chance to win this collection for yourself!


We chose two of our patterns that suit the Wonderland collection perfectly. First we made an Easy Peasy Peasant dress from the adorable pocket watch print Late for a Date in Blue and paired it with a solid white Storybook Pinafore made using the Cross Back Modification here on the blog. A simple black Knot or Not Headband adds a classic Alice look.





Second, we wanted to show you how this same Cross Back Modified Storybook Pinafore can also be worn as a wear-alone dress. For this dress we chose the fabrics Deck of Cards in Mint paired with Card Suits in White for the adorable heart shaped pockets. And yes, we have a free heart pocket tutorial for you!  We’ve also paired this breezy summer dress with a Knot or Not Headband to complete the look.





Let’s take a closer look at those heart-shaped pockets!  It is the perfect shape and so much fun.  What little girl wouldn’t love heart-shaped pockets?  They can be added to just about anything and are the perfect place for stashing treasures.


Heart Pocket Tutorial

Let’s get to the heart pocket tutorial!

  • First, download the pocket pattern piece: Free Heart Pocket Pattern.  Then print at 100% or to your personal preference. Here are some general recommendations for print scale on a girl’s dress. For sizes 4/5 and above print at 100%. Print at 90% for size 2/3, 80% for sizes 6-24 months, and 70% for 0-3 months.
  • As directed on the pocket pattern piece, cut two hearts per pocket. I cut 4 hearts to make 2 pockets.  Make sure to transfer the dots from on either side of the heart at the top of the pattern piece to the right side of the fabric.
  • Use a 1/4″ seam allowance to sew two pockets right sides together.  Leave about an inch unstitched on one side for turning.  You may find it helpful to mark the stitching line so you can sew nice, precise points at the top and bottom.


  • Before turning, clip into the top center of the heart right to the stitching line and clip across the bottom of the heart close to the stitching line.  Also, clip curves around the top of the heart or trim with pinking shears (as I have).  If trimming with pinking shears, do not trim the area left open for turning.
  • Now turn your heart through the opening.  Use a small tool (knitting needles, chopsticks, small screwdriver) to push out the top curves and bottom point.  Press well turning under the 1/4″ seam allowance at the turning point.
  • Almost done!  Topstitch around the entire heart 1/4″ from the edge.  Again, it may be helpful to mark your stitching line at the top and bottom of the heart. Then, edgestitch (1/8″ from the edge or less) the top of the heart between marks only.
  • Pin the pockets to your garment.  I have chosen to add the pockets last as it is easier for me to place them correctly on a finished garment.  For the Storybook Pinafore, I have placed my pockets centered under the straps vertically on my pinafore and a few inches below the bodice seam.  Pin pockets in place and edgestitch 1/8″ from the edge around bottom of the heart between the marks to secure the pocket to the dress, connecting your stitches to the ones you sewed on the top portion between the marks.


  • Finally, sew a bartack at the marked points, connecting the 1/8″ stitching line and the 1/4″ stitching line.  This will reinforce the attachment of the pockets so tugging hands don’t accidentally tear the pocket off.  If your sewing machine does not have a pre-programmed bartack stitch, use a close zig-zag similar to that on a buttonhole. Enjoy your heart pocket!


We hope you have loved seeing our Alice-inspired dresses in Wonderland and the heart pocket tutorial as much as we loved sewing them! Don’t miss the prior and upcoming stops on the Late for a Date Blog hop.

SewVery – August 26
Emily Ann’s Kloset – September 2
Tie Dye Diva – You are here!
Sew Can She – September 16
Jedi Craft Girl – September 23
Flamingo Toes – September 30
A Bright Corner – October 7
CapturedThreadsOctober 14
Wait, did we say something about a giveaway!?  For a chance to win this fabulous fat quarter bundle of Wonderland fabrics simply leave a comment on this blog post!  The winner will be chosen by random from all comments posted by midnight Pacific on Monday September 12 and the winner will be notified September 13.
[Giveaway closed! Congrats Brittany Webb!]


Thanks for visiting Tie Dye Diva’s stop on the Late for a Date Blog Hop and good luck in the giveaway – don’t forget to leave a comment below to enter! (I’ll apologize now that you have to scroll through all the comments to get to the comment form. I’ll try to fix that for the next giveaway. Any WordPress experts in the house?)

























Easy Peasy Peasant Dress | free tutorial | TDD Pattern Add Ons

Man’s Dress Shirt to Girl’s Peasant Dress Upcycle


It’s so easy to upcycle a man’s dress shirt into a peasant dress! Here’s how.

You’ll need:

Man’s dress shirt.
Peasant dress pattern like Easy Peasy Peasant Dress pattern

The Easy Peasy Peasant Dress pattern is available on our website in size ranges 0-3 months through 18-24 months and 2/3 years through 9/10 years, or a bargain bundle of all sizes (which is linked up – you can get to the separate sizes from there if you like). You can use any peasant dress pattern for this tutorial, but I hope you don’t mind if we plug ours – it has a darling a-line shape and includes flutter sleeve, short sleeve, angel sleeve, 3/4 sleeve and long sleeve options, plus the choice to finish the hem with a ruffle or a simple hemmed finish, all at a very low price. OK, that’s the last we’ll say about it.

We are using a man’s standard size Large dress shirt. We can make any size 0-3 months through girl’s 4/5 from this shirt. A larger or less fitted shirt should be able to make up to a 6/6X, it almost fit on ours but was just a bit too small.

Step 1: Wash and dry the shirt if it’s only been dry-cleaned. You want to be sure you can machine-wash your dress and not worry about shrinkage.

After washing and drying, make sure your shirt is big enough for the dress size you want to make. You can lay your half-pattern Dress Front pattern piece on the shirt front, aligning the fold line with the buttonholes to see if it will fit.

Then, cut up the shirt! The best thing about this upcycle is you don’t need the collar, cuffs, or underarms of the shirt, which are the parts of it that tend to get the most wear. Cut up the side seam, around the armhole and collar, and down the other side to disconnect the shirt front, which will be your dress front. Leave the shirt buttoned, you won’t need to unbutton it at all.

Cut around the remaining portion of the armsyces and down the sleeve seams to cut out the sleeves so they will lay flat. Also cut off the cuffs, you won’t need them. Then cut the shirt back from the yoke.

If you have a front pocket that is well-matched to the shirt front, you might like to just leave it in place, as it might leave stitching holes behind, and you do risk cutting the shirt unless you seam-rip very carefully. I risked removing the pocket, and with a good blast with a steam iron, the stitching holes were barely visible.


You’ll want your dress front pattern piece to be a complete piece rather than ‘cut on fold’ since the shirt won’t fold neatly along the buttonholes. You can either print 2 dress fronts, or trace your dress front onto a large piece of paper such as tissue paper or newspaper and tape them together along the fold line, which is now center front. Place this center front line right along the buttonholes of your shirt. Take care that the top button of the shirt is at least 1.5” from the top of the dress pattern since you’ll be folding a casing.


Cut the dress back from the shirt back (on the fold is just fine here!), and sleeves from the sleeves. You can see, even our long sleeve piece fit on the shirt sleeves! But I decided to make short sleeves out of preference.

Construct per the pattern up to folding the elastic casing for the neckline. Because the button placket on the shirt is pretty bulky, you might want to serge the edge to finish it, then turn under once to form the casing rather than turning it twice. If you turn it twice, see if you can get inside the button placket with your scissors and cut away some of the seam allowances and interfacing in there, and press well. Start sewing the casing at one side of the placket and sew around to the other side of the placket. Insert the elastic, join the elastic ends, and close the gap by joining stitches across the placket.

Press up the hem and you’re done! You can either baste the button placket closed and fold it under as one piece, or, to keep the cute ‘shirt’ look, fold and press them under separately, then hem from one edge to the other so they remain separate.


As an extra cute little touch, I scaled down the original shirt pocket by tracing around it about 3/4″ from the edge, cut away the excess, then re-pressed the facing and the edges and reattached it to the dress.

IMG_2628 (1)









Doll Clothing Patterns | Featured Patterns | Garnet Dress, Top and Skirt | Potato Chip Skirt | Sterling Leggings/Shorties | TDD Pattern Add Ons

Tutorial – Adding Built-in Shorts to the Potato Chip and Garnet Skirts!

We love skirts in our house. They are the perfect everyday wear paired with a cute tee.  But, without fail, we need to put shorts beneath.  Try as I do to teach Sweet Pea to be ladylike, little bike shorts or some kind of undershorts are still a necessity.


Skirts are the perfect back to school wear too, but when it comes to storytime on the carpet and playing on the playground, bring on the shorts!

Today I’m showing you how to add attached shorts to both the Potato Chip and Garnet Skirt. Some people call these “monkeybar skirts”. You will need the Sterling Shorties and Leggings Pattern as well as the Potato Chip Skirt Pattern and/or Garnet Pattern.  All three of these patterns include size 12-18 months through 9/10 (the Potato Chip Skirt also includes sizes 11/12 and 13/14).

Sterling Shorties and Leggings are incredibly versatile and a pattern you will use over and over again.  Designed for 4-way stretch knit, make ruffled shorts, ruffled leggings, or plain leggings.  The perfect everyday staple.  Use the shorties pattern without the ruffles for under skirts and dresses (attached or unattached) as we will today.

The Potato Chip Skirt pretty much speaks for itself.  You can’t stop at just one! Classic a-line shape with flat front and elastic back.  Don’t forget about the pockets!  Make your skirt lined, unlined (for heavier bottom weight or denim fabric) or reversible for two looks in one skirt.  The classic styling of this skirts makes it appropriate for many school uniforms too.

And finally, the Garnet Dress, Top, and Skirt Pattern.  Talk about loaded with options.  Make long or short sleeved dress or tee. Paneled or single fabric skirt or dress.  Make it from all knit, or use knit for the bodice and woven for the skirt.  There’s a total of 19 different combinations possible with this one pattern!  For even more style options make sure you read last week’s blog post to omit the collar and use a neckband instead. Today I’ve made both a long sleeve tee and paneled skirt.

Today I am again using the gorgeous Season of Love collection by Ana Davis for Blend Fabrics. This is an Indian-inspired collection featuring elephants and peacocks in mint, coral, and yellow tones.This fabric has been provided to us free of charge so we can bring you awesome tutorials like this one.

Take a closer look at these lovely prints.  They are simply stunning in person!

The Season of Love collection’s just been released and as of right now is a little scarce online. You can find some prints from this collection for pre-order at The Palm Cottage on Etsy, or you can contact Blend Fabrics and they will help you find a store near you that carries Season of Love. {EDITED: In stock now at The Palm Cottage, go take a look!}

Let’s add some shorties!  This is a super simple modification that will literally only add a couple of minutes to your sewing time. We’re making a size 2 width and 3 length in all the patterns, which is Sweet Pea’s size by the size charts.

Starting with the Sterling Shorties pattern, print and assemble your pattern using the shorties cutting line.  Because we will not be making a folded casing at the waistband, measure down 3/4″ from the top edge and use this as your cutting line.

Sew shorties according to instructions (we’re using the no ruffle hem, option a) through step 3.

Set the shorties aside.  Cut and assemble your skirt up to the point of adding the waistband.  For my Potato Chip Skirt I used the reversible view (even thought the skirt is not reversible with attached shorties) because quilting cottons are generally not heavy enough for an unlined skirt.

On Shorties and Garnet skirt, mark center front, center back, and sides.  Mark only center front and back on the Potato Chip skirt and use the side seams (even though the back is wider). With both skirt and shorties right side out, slide the shorties inside the skirt and match front, back, and sides.


On this size 2 the Potato Chip Skirt and shorties will match nearly exactly across the front and need to be stretched to fit across the back.  This is correct, the elastic in the back will pull the skirt and shorties in as needed.

The Garnet skirt is slightly bigger than the shorties around the waist.  We are stretching the shorties to fit.

Baste skirt and shorties together using a 1/4″ seam allowance.  A couple extra notes here.  Your Potato Chip Skirt may feel a little awkward at this point because of the higher back rise of the shorties.  This is okay.  Once the elastic is added to the waistband, they will be perfect.

Notice that little tuck of extra fabric at the back.

Second, I strongly recommend adding a tag to the back of your garnet skirt with attached shorties.  The Garnet Skirt by itself does not have a specific front and back, but because of the rise difference  between front and back of the Sterling Shorties, there is a specific front and back with attached shorties. I have used a size tag here, but a simple loop of ribbon works just as well.

Now simply add your waistband according to the pattern instructions.  Your skirt with attached shorties is done!

Don’t forget about Dolly Patterns to match.  Both the Potato Chip Skirt and Garnet Patterns have matching dolly patterns available.  I’ve make the Potato Chip Dolly Skirt and a Garnet Tee for Dolly.

Could she look any happier?

Now we’re playground and school ready!  In case there’s any question as to why add undershorts, let me show you what happens in real life, instead of posed pictures!



And Garnet Skirts are made for twirling and running down hills!



But all this fun usually ends up on the ground….

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Featured Patterns | Garnet Dress, Top and Skirt | Potato Chip Skirt

Back to School Sewing for Girls (on the Cali & Co Blog)

Blogging about Back to School sewing for girls today over at Cali & Co. Learn about this darling chambray Potato Chip Skirt and Garnet Tee, made with yesterday’s tutorial on sewing a neckband on a tee (instead of the collar included in the Garnet pattern).





See the post here: https://blog.califabrics.com/2016/08/13/a-skirt-tee-for-back-to-school/

Don’t miss entering the $100 CaliFabrics giveaway while you are there- $100 goes a long way at CaliFabrics!


The final part in the Back to School sewing trilogy coming up soon!