I’ve got laundry, a couple messy rooms, a kid screaming bloody murder (as always) and the other one interrupting me every couple of seconds. In between those interruptions, let’s see how fast I can make this post! Excuse the hap-hazard style and grammar mistakes!

I wanted to show *most* of the step-by-step pictures of the previous little girl dress I blogged about here and an Easter dress I created for my 3 year old (USING THE EXACT SAME PATTERN!).

I already posted the finished results on Facebook a few weeks ago, but thought, why not post a few pics of the actual process? That way, I can use these pics as reminders FOR MYSELF when I’m in a sewing state of stupefaction? I’ve found that sometimes just seeing pictures–and NOT VIDEOS--were what made the difference in learning how to sew different things.

Here you’ll find an assortment of pictures that I took while making both dresses. Nothing is better than being able to design your own dress with the wild assortment of frilly and fun things at your local fabric store.

Here are the materials I picked for my First Little Girl Easter Dress. (It was actually my first dress attempt). This Easter fabric was on sale at Joann’s. After I bought all of this material (including pattern, zipper and pink ruffle) it cost me around $12.

The good news? You can use the pattern over and over again and there are always extra fabric remnants for other projects.

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Always make sure to wash, dry and iron all your fabric before working with it!

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Next, you’ll want to cut out every single piece of your pattern according to your child’s dress size. Here is an example of the front bodice of the dress pattern piece placed right next to the fold of the fabric. One of the techniques you’ll encounter very frequently in sewing patterns.

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Here are what the skirt pattern pieces will look like when you cut them out and place them on the fabric you will use (this one’s the green dress). One is on the fold and you will cut it on all the sides, except the fold, of course. The other piece is just situated on the fabric and not necessarily on the fold; this means you will cut 2 pieces and sew those two together).

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When you cut out the front bottom of the dress, it will look like this (this one’s for the Easter dress)

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Now you’ll follow the instructions to make 2 pleats in the back and one in the front. This is an example of the front (single) pleat.

Follow the instructions on your (front dress bottom) pattern piece. Evenly place pins in material as shown above (and according to the pattern directions for the size you are using). Notice how I flipped the pattern piece over to the other side of the skirt to determine the location of the 3rd pin’s placement.

You will bring the (above) 3 yellow headed pins together (one on top of the other) and they will end up looking kinda like this; see picture just below. You’ll notice the pleat beginning to form.

Now you’ll just have to sew a little line right in the middle area of the pins.

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It will look sorta like this when you initially sew the pleat. You get the idea. Don’t worry, this little seam line will not show because you’ll sew your bodice and dress bottom-half together over that seam line. All you’ll see is the neat little pleat. 

I didn’t take a picture, but you’ll next sew the two pleats on the rear side of the dress. Next, you’ll sew the front of the dress to the back of the dress by placing the two pieces right sides together and sewing down the sides. You can do all the hems later.

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Your bodice top pieces (back and front as shown) will look like this.  You can see the seam line in the back bodice piece (which I already sewed together)–sorry, didn’t capture that step.

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Next, you’ll need to work on your sleeves. You can use the setting sleeves in the round method as I blogged about here. OR, you can set your sleeves in the flat, as shown below. This is roughly how you’ll position your sleeves on your top bodice and then pin them in place to do the flat method.

Finally, your top and bottom pieces will be complete. They might look roughly like so:

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Now sew them together and you’ll get a dress kinda like this:

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Extra touches? I added a Peter Pan collar and attached a cute pink, frilly trim on the bottom of the dress.

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And what about that green dress where I used the same pattern/idea but different fabric? Notice that I used the extra pink material from this Easter dress to make my sleeves and some of the collar for the other dress below. Don’t waste any fabric, you’ll find some way to use it. 🙂

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I think she loves it!

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