Two weeks ago we had the opportunity to get together with some friends and participate in a service project. The boys played, the girls made beaded bracelets, and the moms made pillowcase dresses to send off with our church members who are going on a mission trip to Africa. To learn more about making pillowcase dresses as a missions project make sure to check out http://littledressesforafrica.org/ .
Now, I should tell you that I have very limited experience with a sewing machine even though I've owned one since I was about 10. However, these dresses are so easy to make, that I learned how to make them in less than an hour and promptly came home and made matching dresses for all three of my girls last week. I've never made dresses before, so these are the first. The girls wore them last Sunday to a birthday party.
They are summer dresses and the weather is still cool here, so we put long sleeve shirts and tights on the girls as well. Also, these dresses can be made out of pillowcases, but it was actually cheaper to just buy the fabric and easy enough to start from scratch. I bought 2 yards of the green fabric for $4.50 a yard and 1 yard of the pink fabric for $1.50 a yard. So for less than $15 I had enough to make 3 dresses, a headband, and still had fabric left over.
A standard size pillowcase will make a size 7/8 dress. You can find complete instructions and a very helpful video tutorial here.
I think the dresses are a little "boxy looking" so I sewed a decorative ribbon on the front and let the ribbons hang loose in the back to tie. I think it gives the dress better shape.
The older girls' long hair cover it up, but you can see in this picture of Baby L that the dresses tie at the shoulder. I finished the dresses a little past midnight on Saturday night and quickly used some extra fabric and elastic to sew up a headband and bow for Baby L. She was asleep so I couldn't measure her head and it wound up being a little snug. But it was awfully cute. :o)
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