Friday, November 5, 2010

A sweater-to-child's-dress tutorial

Take an old turtleneck to use as your dress-to-be.

My inspiration for this dress came from a cowl-necked tunic that I bought O at Gymboree.  Like this.
Since I wanted the neck to be kind of floppy, I left the original turtle alone. :)

So, I took my turtlenecked sweater and got out my trusty scissors.

I cut off the sleeves. Then, it looked like this.

I skipped photographing the next step, but I measured a dress of hers up against the sweater to get an idea of how wide to make it and where to cut my arm holes.

Then, I snipped along my lines.

Now, I start to tackle the sleeves.  I took the dress used above to form a pattern for the width to measure the arms and do the same.  You can see my highlighter marks here if you look carefully.

Snip, snip.  They now look like this.

Fold the sleeves so the right sides are together and sew down the open side.

Now, at this point, I took my seam ripper and took off the original tag.  My kids aren't big fan of tags, so it had to go.  You all know how to use a seam ripper, so I'll spare you the pictures.

Now, take your "dress", make sure the right sides are facing each other and sew down both sides of the dress, making sure not to sew up the arm holes.  Depending on the height of your little girl, you may have to measure her, cut the sweater to the appropriate length, and then hem the bottom.  I wanted to just use the length of the shirt, so I used the original hem. ( Plus, I'm pretty lazy when it comes to sewing and I didn't want to create an entire new hem.)

 When you are finished sewing, flip the sleeves right side out, so the raw edge is inside.  Here comes the tricky part.  With your dress still inside out, stuff your sleeve, (which is right side out) into the dress.  You'll want to make sure that the sleeve is in the dress, like pictured below (but, obviously IN the dress.  its hard to show you the way the sleeve faces when its in there...  tricky photography.  I'm just not there, yet. lol.)

Sew around the arm hole, securing the sleeve to the dress.  Repeat for the other arm and sleeve.

I happened to have a bit of fabric left over from when I trimmed the sides of my sweater.  I decided to make a belt. The belt was super easy, so I won't go into detail here.  If you know how to sew any kind of strap, you know how to do this guy, too.  I used two strips that had original edges/hems so that I didn't have to close the ends of the belt up with any type of hem.  You could easily go belt less, too.  

Finished product

Just waiting on my little girl to come home from school to try it on. 


Maggie said...

How cute! I can't wait to see her in your lovely creation! Great job - I'm going to have to go turtleneck sweater hunting (thrift stores of course) and see if I can find one to try this for Sydney.

Raechel said...

fun! can't wait to see it on her!!