Dresses are definitely my favorite item of clothing to sew, and they are a great place for a beginning sewist to start.
Obviously there is a range of difficulty when sewing a dress, but LOTS of simple dress patterns are easy for a beginner to tackle. You can make a full outfit with none of the tricky fitting and fiddly sewing that making pants often requires. One more note before we get started: Many of these dress patterns are suitable for charity sewing. The easiest way to make a dress is to start with a purchased shirt t-shirt, tank, sweatshirt, etc. Here are a couple tutorials that show you how to make a dress from a shirt:.
This shirt to dress tutorial shows you how to take any existing t-shirt or tank and add on fabric to make a dress. The tutorial teaches you how to gather the skirt fabric and attach it to the shirt. Start with an existing sweatshirt and add layers of stretchy knit fabric and tulle to turn it into an adorable dress. Step by step photo instructions included. This tutorial will teach you how to gather a skirt and sew bias tape across the top to turn a onesie into a wrap dress.
This pillowcase dress tutorial from Polka Dot Chair provides a cutting chart for sizes 3 months up through 5 years as well as a thorough explanation of how to sew the dress. The first type of fabric is called knit fabric, and the second type is called woven fabric. Knit fabrics are stretchy, whereas woven fabrics are not. T-shirts are generally made from knit fabrics, whereas button-down dress shirts are made from wovens. Knits and wovens are not interchangeable. I like using knits to make dresses because stretchy knit fabric is super comfortable to wear.
Click here to learn more about different types of knits. Keep reading for lots of free dress patterns! I list dress patterns for girls first, followed by dress patterns for women.
This dress pattern works great for making dress to donate, and also works well for easy nightgowns. The pattern also includes instructions for adding a pocket in a contrast fabric. Scattered Thoughts of a Craft Mom offers two different t-shirt dress patterns, both in sizes This free dress pattern will teach you how to make a dress with set in sleeves, as well as giving you lots of other good sewing tips and resources.
Click here for the short sleeve t-shirt dress pattern. The long sleeve version of the t-shirt dress pattern also from Scattered Thoughts of a Crafty Mom adds a pretty ruffled bell sleeve. The dress itself is similar to the versions I listed above, but with cute bubble sleeves. It also comes in baby sizes! Size range is 6 months — 9 years. This opens up lots of options and allows you to make a dress in any size!
This tutorial will show you how to make a midi dress in any size using a t-shirt you already own to create your pattern. Woven fabrics can be a little harder to sew than knit fabrics, just because the lack of stretch means everything has to line up correctly. The pattern comes in sizes This would be a great dress pattern for a beginner. This free pattern features a cute cut-out in the back, and comes in sizes 2T to 6 plus a doll size. If you want an easy to sew dress pattern that includes sleeves, a peasant dress is the way to go!
Peasant dresses are very easy to sew and the generous fit means girls can wear them for a long time. Scattered Thoughts of a Crafty Mom shares a simple Simple Peasant dress pattern in a huge range of sizes — from 1 year to There is both a long and a short sleeve version. The Sweet Rose dress pattern is a great way to learn how to set in sleeves on a dress made from woven fabric. This dress is especially nice made up in a flannel for fall or winter, with cozy long sleeves that are gathered at the wrist. Pattern goes up to size There are only two pattern pieces and the sleeves are not a separate piece, making this figure hugging knit dress very quick to sew.
For a super comfortable dress for women, check out this easy swing dress pattern. This pattern will teach you how to set in sleeves, bind a neckline, and hem stretchy knit fabric. The post uses a free printable t-shirt pattern in size L.
This dress pattern is a bit more advanced, but detailed instructions and lots of photos will help you through the process. What if I told you that you could make a dress by sewing just one seam? Sound too good to be true? Check your local fabric store for shirred fabric, and then read this tutorial to learn how to turn it into a dress by sewing one straight line: One Seam Maxi Dress Tutorial.
There is no printable pattern, but she shows you how to use a tank to create the basic pattern in any size. The sewing is straightforward enough for a beginner and the end result is adorable. For more advanced sewists, visit the Mood Fabrics blog for tons of gorgeous free dress patterns, like this beautiful wrap dress. These patterns come in a large variety of sizes the wrap dress comes in sizes ! Also, I have not done extensive research on any of these organizations so I cannot vouch for them — do your research and donate where you feel comfortable.
Dresses for Haiti : This organization looks for beautiful handmade dresses that are not pillowcase style. Thanks for including my raglan dress!! I have recently started following your website and I have to say it is amazing!!!!!! I have made some of your stuff already and plan to make a play all day dress for my niece next week! Thanks for all your hard work! I have hunted for months in my spare time for free sizable patterns, especially with sleeves. I sew for 4 grand daughters, but also for those less fortunate.
You have solved my problems several times over. Scared to death of that material. Any pointers, how toos, etc. Warmest Regards, L. Hello there! I followed the simple shirred summer dress tutorial and managed to produce one for my grand niece. I would like to post a picture of it but this column is only for comments.
They have drop off stations. They have a great ministry! Thank you very much for taking the time to post all of this information. I wanted to find my purpose in life. So, I did some Google search without much luck. I know what I want to do, I want to be a nurse and help other people and volunteer. But getting into the nursing program has been an impossible.
Frustrated i started thinking of ways that can give back and really make a difference when I remembered reading a pint about a very old lady that made a commitment when she was younger, to sew a dress a day.
For some reason that got stuck in my head and I started searching in pinterest for patterns and I found your wonderful site. Now, why I wanted to share this information with you? I come from a third world country and I know that those kids really need help. Just what I was looking for such pretty simple dresses. There are only 8 of us on the committee and a team of 16 soup makers most of us are in our dotage but keen to help the most needy of people. We gave out presents and food to over children newborn to 12 yrs.
It was my first time to visit this camp and I wanted something practical to give them so using your patterns will have monthly Charity sewing day. So, next Christmas they can have something new to wear. Thanks for the list! I made the tunic dress in navy stripe and it is absolutely gorgeous. Perfect fit in a size 3, was easy to make. Helps to have a background in sewing but I found this pattern easier to use than most I have bought and the result could not have been better. Thank you so much for posting this.
I work with the church ladies mission group. I am in my dotage years, but I can still sew simple things. We work the year around, Getting prepared for the shipment. I am not very good on the internet Can you email me information on how to get your patterns for the little girls dresses.
I am 80 but sew for great, great nieces 10 And under. Thank you. Rileys childrens hospital. I know so many moms in the nicu would love to get dresses for there little girls. Plus there are children of all ages there.