Friday, June 24, 2011

Pillowcase Dress using an actual pillowcase!

So...after making the girls their pillowcases dresses from scratch here & here  I found a really pretty pillowcase at a thrift store that looked brand was only $2 so I grabbed it.  Its been sitting in the bag of fabric remnants I have been acquiring since learning to sew.  Today I grabbed it out and got to work..I don't know if its the sun finally being out after several days of cloudy rainy weather or what but I was itching to sew something summery and I try to sew at least 1 thing every week to keep learning and getting better! 

I snapped some pictures along the way because I know learning to sew is frustrating {at least for me!}  I search and search for good simple easy to follow tutorials with tons of directions for people like me who get lost easily and need their hand held throughout.

1 pillowcase
2yds of ribbon
coordinating thread
{obviously sewing machine, measuring tape, scissors, pins, etc.)

OK - so first pick out a pillowcase that suits your fancy. Just be sure to hold it up to your child to make sure the length is might need a king size or the standard might be just fine. Pick a coordinating ribbon for the "straps"

crisp white w/ eyelet trim! Ribbon left over from an Emmie skirt!

Next fold your pillowcase in 1/2 and cut off 1" {or more if necessary} on the top, this will become the top of the dress.

Next, take the folded pillowcase {make sure the seam is in the fold you are cutting on} measure & cut the arm holes.  For my 6.5 year old I cut down 6" & across 2".  Just measure a dress or shirt your child currently has, or I found this tutorial helpful for determining sizes under step #4. 

Next, you will finish the top of the dress.  Turn the pillowcase inside out.  Fold over about 1/4" on the front, iron that down then fold over again 1" {I did 1 1/4" so I can easily change out the ribbon whenever we want} and iron that in place.  Repeat the same thing to the back piece. Pin each side in place. Now you will sew that in place, run a stitch right along the bottom edge of your folded piece in the front and back.

Next its time to sew the arm holes.  My LEAST favorite part of any dress or top.  A little trick to make it a bit easier is to cut a tiny slit in the corners of each arm hole, that just makes it easier to fold over, iron in place & sew. Fold over just a tiny bit then again about 1/4" so you have a clean finished edge.  It will bunch a little as you sew but it really doesn't matter since this is a loose fitting dress and it wont be seen under their arms either!

Next take your ribbon and feed it through the "pockets" you sewed on the front and back, easiest way is to attach a large safety pin to one end and feed it through. I chose to take 1 long piece of ribbon {66" to be exact} and only tie on one shoulder because I like that style..but you could take 2 pieces and have ties on each shoulder like I did on the original pillowcase dresses I made.  Be sure to use FrayChek on the ends of the ribbon so they stay nice and crisp.

Voila...a super cute light and airy summer dress for your little gal!


  1. Savannah looks so cute in those pics! She must really like the dress. Turned out cute!

  2. Adorable. You did a great job and great tutorial. Very cute daughter. Looks like she loves the dress! Perfect for summer!