EASY Girls Dress How to {NO ZIPPERS OR BUTTONS} | The Willow Dress | Whitney Sews

EASY Girls Dress How to {NO ZIPPERS OR BUTTONS} | The Willow Dress | Whitney Sews


Hi everyone! I’m Whitney and I post sewing
tutorials every Wednesday here on Whitney Sews. Today I’ll be showing step-by-step how
I made two cute dresses for my daughter Peyton. Make sure to hit that red subscribe button
down below if you haven’t already and now let’s get into the tutorial. This is a really neat dress because depending
on the fabric you use it can be anything from a play dress to a fancy dress. There aren’t
any closures so it works by having elastic in the straps and the top being a bit loose,
then you tie the ties in the back to bring in the excess material. Oh and the dress is
fully finished inside and out without using a serger. I drafted a quick pattern for this dress based
on one Peyton already has and likes. I will have my pattern available in a 2T or 3T size
because that is what I made for Peyton. If you want to make the dress in another size
you can make a pattern using a dress or lose fitting tank top you already have or find
a commercial pattern that looks similar and use it. Just make sure your pattern is one
size larger so there is room to get in and out and then add a ½ inch seam allowance
all the way around. There will be more info on the measurements along with the pattern
I mention before over on my website whitneysews.com. Now let’s get into the project. Select the
materials you want to use. I went with a red polka dot cotton, the blue with stars is actually
a flannel, and some yellow trim. Fold the material for the top so your pattern fits
on and cut it out. Repeat to cut out 4 from the pattern, refolding each time just enough
material for the pattern to fit on. You will need those four pieces for the dress top and
lining, two straps, two ties, and one piece for the bottom of the dress.
Open the skirt piece up and fold one of the long edges up then fold it over again. Sew
along the edge to create a double fold hem. I sewed mine twice with contrasting thread
because I liked the look of it. The way we’re going to finish off the inside of the dress
is with french seams. So lay the skirt piece wrong sides together lining up the short edges.
Sew down the side with a small seam allowance. Flip it inside out so the pretty sides are
now touching. Sew along the same side as before with a slightly larger seam allowance to finish
off the french seam and encase the raw edges. For the waist ties fold the piece in half
then fold back the top edges ¼ inch. Sew across the short end to hold the folds in
place. Then turn it right sides out and tuck those top edges inside and top stitch down
the long side. I’ll link another video in the information icon where I show this step
better. Do this for both ties and they should look like this.
Now onto the straps, these should be about two times longer than normal straps. Fold
them in half right sides together and sew along the long edge with a ¼ inch seam allowance.
Turn the straps right sides out and iron flat with the seam going down the center on one
side. Cut a piece of elastic for each strap that is about half the length of the strap.
Add a safety pin to one end and feed the elastic into the strap. Sew a line of stitches across
each end to hold the elastic in place. Place one of the top pieces right sides up
and lay the ties on top so the long sides are facing inward. If you’re using my pattern
it’s marked where the ties go. If not, make sure they are at least 1 inch up from the
bottom edge. Lay one of the other top pieces on top right sides together and sew up both
sides with a ½ inch seam allowance. Place the other two top pieces right sides together
and sew along the sides as well. Flip the one with the ties right sides out
and place the straps on top with the seam side facing up. I didn’t do it, but you want
to extend the ends past the top about a half inch. Sew across the ends to attach. Bring
the other end of the strap around to the back side and sew it to attach. Make sure the seam
of the strap is facing up along the entire strap and not twisted.
Place one top inside the other lining up the side seams. You can’t really pin or clip around
the top because of how the straps are. As you sew take it slow and line up the top edges
as you go. You will sew around the strap ends where you already tacked them down, along
the neck and arm curves all with a ½ inch seam allowance. Trim the seam allowances along
the curves with pinking shears. Turn the piece right sides out making sure
the ties are on the outside. Iron the seam along the top making it as smooth and neat
as possible. Now it’s time to attach the skirt with a french seam. Place the skirt inside
the top so the lining and the wrong side of the skirt are touching. The skirt is bigger
around than the top, so evenly spread the excess around as you clip the layers together.
Sew the top and bottom together with a ¼ inch or smaller seam allowance making small
gathers in the skirt as you go. At this point it will look like you sewed the skirt part
on backwards, but that is correct. Flip it around so the top and skirt are right sides
together. Sew along the folded edge again just outside the first seam to finish the
french seam. Adjust it as you go to keep everything smooth.
Flip everything right sides out and you are technically done, but if you want to add some
trim place it right above where the skirt attachs and sew it down all the way around
the dress. I sewed mine twice, once near the top of the trim and another time about ¼
inch below the first. Overlap the edges of the trim in the back of the dress.
And there you have it! This dress is super cute and nota hard to make. I actually whipped
up a second version of the dress using the last bit of fabric left from the patchwork
skirts I made last month along with a pearl snap shirt from my stash for the skirt portion.
It turned out so cute and took less than 2 hours from start to finish! So as you see,
this really is a super versatile project and I hope you give it a try. If you do make sure
to share a pic with me using the #whitneysews. If you want to see another clothing tutorial
I’ll have one linked right over here for the matching skirts I made for me and Peyton.
If you want to see more videos of my family make sure to click right down here to subscribe
to my personal channel. Then come back here next Wednesday for another tutorial. Until
then, happy sewing!

19 Replies to “EASY Girls Dress How to {NO ZIPPERS OR BUTTONS} | The Willow Dress | Whitney Sews”

  1. Those are really cute dresses!  I am still learning to sew as you might know.  I want to make my own dresses and these are similar to what I want to make.  I love your videos as they are easy for the novice sewer to learn from.  I need to "just do it"  and make my own dress!  Thanks, Whitney!

  2. wow very well explained. Do you have a very simple baby newborn girl dress for complete novice by any chance 😅?

  3. I have been commissioned by a friend to make a couple dresses for her new baby. How would I scale it down enough to make it either NB or 0-3m size??

  4. Just fabulous Whitney!!  Very good instructions, you are still my favorite.  I find out soon if I will have a boy or girl grandchild,  secretly hoping it's a girl so I can make this!!! Peyton is beautiful because she looks like you!! Have a great week!! Paula.

  5. I love this dress! —The video stops showing your steps at 4:32, the voiceover continues but I can’t see what you are showing—!! I’d love to be able to see the rest of your tutorial. Thank you Whitney!💜

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