Sunday, March 13, 2011

T-shirt Dress Tutorial

A friend of mine asked me to post step- by- step next time I made an appliqued shirt. So here it is!

Another friend of mine told me I really needed to check out the blog Prudent Baby . Thanks Ash! (So I did.) I now have about 15 new projects added to my "want to do, but probably won't find the time" list. HOWEVER. I saw THIS super cute horse appliqued hoodie... and HELLO! I had a cowgirl themed birthday party coming up for my oldest... it was perfect. I had to make it happen. So below is how I did it.


First, I went to the link above and printed the applique template, copied and pasted it into my word processor and resized it according to my needs (since I was making it for a toddler and not an infant). Then I printed it out and traced it onto some iron on transfer paper. 


I then measured the bottom of the shirt so I would know how much material I would need for the ruffle skirt. I decided on 3" and 6" wide ruffles. The shirt was 12" across so I new I wanted at least 36" around to get a decent gather. I think I ended up doing about 42" to be safe. 


So I folded the material in half and cut the top ruffle at about 4" for seams. Then I did the same with the bottom ruffle but made it 7". 


Since now I knew how much material the skirt would take, I ironed on both of the transfer templates to the wrong side of the material and then cut them out. Then I ironed the horse silhouette onto the oval and then ironed the oval (and horse) onto the shirt. 


After they were securely ironed, I put the appropriate color thread on and ironed around in a straight stitch outlining each but leaving a tiny edge. (Since this was a cowgirl party, I wanted the edges to fringe a bit. You can do any kind of stitch you want...zig zag, blanket stitch, applique stitch see the T-shirt  post... etc,etc. It's up to you.)

Now we are ready for the skirt. 

Remember I previously cut the ruffle material out. So I re-checked them to make sure they match up correctly and trimmed where I needed to in order to have straight and even sides and edges. Then I lined them up on top of each other to make sure I liked the size of the ruffles. 


After this I ironed down a 1/4" seam and then folded it and ironed another 1/4" seam for neatness. After I ironed the seam straight and even I hemmed the bottom of each piece of ruffle material, as seen above. 


I realigned them on top of each other and did two basting stitches (one at 3/8" and one at 5/8"). My gramma said it helps the gather to be smoother. And what gramma says, goes... because I really don't have a clue about any of this... 


After I pulled the tops of the basting stitches to get the gather I liked... (this took me a while, I was close to a mental breakdown at this point. Also, one of the basting stitches broke and so part of it wouldn't stay gathered... I later learned that you can tie a small knot in the end of the thread to help keep it from straightening back out. FYI.) 

Where was I? OH. After I liked how it was gathered and remeasured to make sure that it would fit the width of the shirt, I folded it in half (right side to right side) and stitched the side seam (starting after the basting stitch, in case I sucked and needed to redo it, it'd be easier). 


So, because I wanted to throw it all out the window and cry like the hormonal psycho chick that I am right now, my lovely, patient and understanding Gramma took over as I tried not to lose it.


Gramma, this is the world. 
World, this is Gramma. 

So basically what she is doing as I crumble under pressure... Is marking a straight line in pencil across the part of the shirt where I want the skirt to be sewn on. She is lining up the gathered edge and pinning it in place to ensure that it's straight. Because she rocks. 


So I sewed on the skirt (with a basting stitch, in case I screwed up)with about a 1/2" seam. Then I lined it up and pinned the ribbon on, said to hell with any more basting stitches, I was going for it. I Sewed on the bottom side first, since it was an uneven surface and would be easier to keep the top part down as I sewed it. Then I sewed the top seam of the ribbon. 

The end. My baby is upstairs crying and choking on phlegm. I must go and love and squeeze him so he makes it until the morning and then off to the doctors, we go! 

Good night, and good luck! 

3 comments:

  1. CUTE! This may also be the most entertaining tutorial I have ever read :) Bailey is ADORABLE and so it her cowgirl dress! WAY above my talent-level though...maybe one day :) Love you!

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  2. You did such an amazing job baby. We're lucky to have you as a mommy. Love you.

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