When I started thinking about what I wanted to make for our baby, I knew right away that I would make a pinafore dress with a sweet little pair of bloomers to peek out underneath in case we have a little girl. I’ve seen pinafore dresses (or apron dresses, or cross-over dresses) around, and I know it’s an old style, but I had no luck finding a pattern that was small enough – most of the ones I found started at 6 months. (This one from Owly Baby (link goes to Pink Chalk Fabrics) was the closest to my “vision” that I found, but it starts at 6 month size and without a front view I wasn’t quite ready to pull the trigger.) Other similar patterns are the Criss Cross Dress from Smashed Peas and Carrots (starts at 6 month size) and the Criss Cross Dress from Melly Sews (3-6 month size, but the straps come up from the front and cross to the back instead of wrapping around back to front as I wanted. After hemming and hawing for way too long, I decided to start with the Melly Sews pattern (which she offers for free on her blog with a subscription to her email notifications) and adapt from there.
Here’s what I came up with.
Download the (very quickly hand-drawn and scanned) PDF pattern here (prints on 5 pages) and assemble it:
2/3 yd fabric (I used chambray, but this would be cute in any soft cotton)
2/3 yd lining (can be the same as your fabric or a contrasting printed cotton to make it reversible)
2 buttons (or 4 if you’re making the dress reversible)
I didn’t photograph the steps as I was making it, but it’s really simple.
There’s only one pattern piece: cut it on the fold from the fashion fabric and from your lining fabric. You can make this reversible, but I chose to self-line it because the Robert Kaufman chambray I used will be so nice and soft against baby’s skin.
Put your fabric and lining right sides together and sew all the way around, stopping and backstitching about 3″ before you reach your starting point.
Clip the curves in your seam allowance so that it will lay nicely when you turn the garment right side out.
Turn right side out through the opening you left. A chopstick or turning tool makes turning the straps easier.
Press the garment, turning the seam allowance of your opening to the inside.
Slipstitch the opening closed and topstitch all the way around the edge if you wish. (I skipped topstitching, but the benefit of doing it is that you’ll have a nice crisp edge and the dress won’t get quite so tangled up in the wash.)
Stitch buttonholes in the ends of the straps according to your button size following the instructions in your sewing machine manual.
Stitch on your buttons at the ‘X’s. (Keep in mind that you will need buttons on both the inside and ouside if you are making the dress reversible.)
I used Melly Sews’ bloomer pattern with the only change being that I pinked the edges of the ruffles instead of finishing them and I sewed them on in a wave instead of straight across.
So that wraps up the baby sewing at least until we find out what sort of tiny human will be wearing the things I make. If we don’t have a girl, I really hope a friend does soon, because this dress and those little bloomers are too stinkin’ cute to be packed away for long.
If you have some baby sewing to do and you missed the tutorial on adding a belt and cuffs to a romper, it’s here.
Now we’re just waiting on a baby to wear them! Don’t forget to watch for the quilt giveaway – my midwife says I could go into labor any minute! 🙂