Ruffle Knit Fabric Project
April 25, 2012
Obsession is a bit of an overstatement (just a bit) when it comes to my desire to try out our new Stretch Ruffle Knit Fabric. I loved it from first sight and once I had it in hand it was even more delicious! The small ruffles are just right; a slight shake here or shimmy there and the whole fabric dances. It would be perfect for turning any ordinary project into something wonderful! I set to work right away on a simple little dress for my little one. I envisioned something she could run around and play in but also wear out, should we be brave enough to take her "someplace nice", and family pictures. What I ended up with was so much more.
Let me start by saying that there is a fair amount of stretch to this fabric which makes it ideal for kids clothing. While this dress looked so fancy on my daughter it did not feel fancy (to me fancy kids clothing= uncomfortable). She loved wearing it. I loved how RIDICULOUSLY easy it was to make. The dress features 2 gores in the back for extra swing and extra running leg room plus 'Y' shaped straps that fasten in the back with Velcro. This makes adjusting for a tank top underneath or slipping on over a swimsuit simple. I have also found that should your child tend toward tantrums when it comes time to undress, just a quick swipe of the fingers and the dress is off!
To make your own follow below:
¼ yd of Quilting Cotton
6 in. of 3/4in. wide Velcro
Cut a rectangle that is 15-18 in. long (depending on how tall your child is or how long you want the dress. Mine was 18 in. for a 3yr old) by the width of her chest. Also cut 2 gores that are the same length as your rectangle but 1 in. wide at the top and 4 in. wide at the bottom. Cut 25 in. of bias tape from the quilting cotton as well as two 4.5 in. by 8 in straps and one 4.5 in. by 6 in. strap.
Begin by joining the gores to each side of the rectangle, RS together and stitch in place using a zig zag stitch. Then join the 2 gores together making a tube. Stitch a basting stitch around the top of the tube and slightly gather the top of your dress since the added gores have made it wider than the chest measurement. Gather until your dress is back to the chest measurement. Pin your bias tape to the top of your dress (RS facing) and stitch in place using a zigzag stitch. Fold over your bias tape and stitch in place using a small zig zag stitch or longer straight stitch.
Fold one of your straps in half along its length and press, open up and fold each edge toward the center crease and press in place (you are folding it in quarters). Fold along the center crease and press again and pin along the open edge. Stitch the strap closed using a ¼ in. seam and then added more decorative stitching at ¼ in. intervals. Repeat for the remaining straps.
Cut your Velcro into two 2 in. length and pull apart. On one long strap pin and stitch one female Velcro piece, pin and stitch the male piece onto the other long strap. On the shorter strap, pin and stitch one female piece on one side and pin and stitch one male piece on the other side. Mark your long strap placement by trying the dress on your child or using another dress as a guide stitch in place using 2 lines of stitching. Center your short strap on the back gores and stitch in place using 2 lines of stitching to secure.
You're done. The Velcro not only makes for easy dressing and undressing but allows you to adjust the angle of the straps for maximum comfort. This dress makes a great swimsuit cover up or picnic play dress- if she spills ketchup on it no need to worry about how to keep it out of her hair as your pull the dress off, just release the straps and step out!
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