Learn how to sew a basic dress for an American Girl doll or other 18″ doll. This free pattern is versatile and easy to follow!
2. Choose fabric. I suggest using stretchy knit fabrics with edges that don’t fray. That way you don’t have to roll edges under twice… which makes finishing the neckline and hems so much easier. This is a great project to use old t-shirts that don’t get worn anymore. If you decide to go with a woven fabric, you will need to serge all the raw edges and fold all the hems under twice. And that’s why it’s so much easier to just use knits! 🙂
3. Carefully cut out all your pattern pieces. If you are repurposing an old shirt, try lining up your pattern pieces to take advantage of the already-finished edges.
4. With right sides together, sew the front piece to the two back pieces at the shoulder seams using a 1/4 inch seam allowance.
5. Roll the fabric under about 1/8 inch and finish off the neckline. Be careful not to pull or stretch the fabric or your neckline will pucker.
7. With right sides together, match the sleeve center with the shoulder seam. Pin in place. Then match up the edge of the arm hole with the edge of the sleeve and sew, easing the fabric (that means fiddling with it to make the two pieces line up) as you go.
8. With right sides still together, line up the bottom sleeve edges and sew from the sleeve all the way down to the bottom hem.
I see so many possibilities with this little pattern. Cut it short to make a tunic-style shirt to pair with leggings. Add a ruffle to the bottom hem. Use two fabrics for a color blocked look. Add a tuxedo bib detail. Use it as the bodice for a dress and add a gathered skirt. Or turn it around and make a cardigan with little faux buttons over the velcro. Fun, fun, fun!
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