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I made a dress.

I know that I generally seem pretty crafty on this blog, but I am no seamstress. Until recently I’ve been completely freaked out by sewing machines in general. So this is my first actual article of clothing that I sewed myself. And it’s kind of cheating, because I used a t-shirt for the top. But I still sewed the skirt and tie by myself and attached it to the t-shirt. So I’m pretty proud of myself.

And let me tell you, if you own a sewing machine and can sew moderately straight lines, you can make a dress like this.

I found this tutorial over at Do It Yourself Divas. I followed it almost exactly except for the way I attached the ties. Since I was using a contrasting color for the ties on this dress and I wanted it to have a color block feel, I didn’t want the skirt fabric to show anywhere above the ties. So I made the ties, then sewed them together into one long tie.

Then, I placed the seam of the tie over one of the side seams after sewing the skirt to the shirt. Then I sewed right over the seam so you can’t see it.

I pulled one side of the tie around the back (I had made one side of the tie longer so it would go around the back and then back to where I wanted the bow to be) as I was wearing it and pinned the tie in place to the other seam, making sure the tie would lie flat against the back of the dress as I wear it. I sewed a straight stitch right along the seam of the dress so it looks like a single seam.

Also, when I placed the tie, I placed it so it overlapped both the shirt & skirt portions of the dress to help ensure you don’t see the skirt above the tie.

A few other notes:
-Since I used jersey knit, I used a ball-point needle.
-On the side seams as well as the seam attaching the skirt to the shirt, I used a zig-zag stitch so the seams would stretch along with the fabric. If you were to use a non-stretchy fabric, this wouldn’t be necessary.
-The hardest part was attaching the skirt to the shirt. It’s hard to make sure the skirt is gathered just the right amount to fit the shirt and that the gathers stay even. I think if I were more experienced with gathering things, it would have been easier.
-I used a fusible hem interfacing to help with the hem. I first fused the hem up so it was completely tacked down, then I used a twin needle to sew the hem. It was so easy to do once it was fused because it didn’t move at all while I was sewing.
-Wearing this dress feels like wearing pajamas. Seriously, it’s so comfortable.
-You could easily make this a super cute non-maternity dress. I would cut the front piece the same size as the back, and probably drop the waist to your natural waist vs. doing the empire waist. But it would be a great way to make a super cute maxi dress!

And that’s it! You should definitely check out the Do It Yourself Divas— they have a ton of tutorials that I had so much fun browsing. Maybe there are more clothes to be made in my future!

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