Saturday, August 6, 2011

Day 3: T-Shirt Pocket Dress and Tutorial

I know there are a thousand tutorials about turning a T-shirt into a girl's dress, but maybe you've never seen one with pockets before...

Here's one of Jonathan's souvenir T-shirts from a trip we took to Disneyland. It didn't fit him anymore, but I couldn't bear to get rid of anything with Mickey Mouse on it, so I decided to make it into a dress from Hannah.

I started by tracing the bodice from an existing dress that Hannah likes. Part of the charm of this blue dress is that it has really big pockets. As in, you can fit a bag of goldfish crackers in the pocket. She loves them. So I decided that the new dress must have pockets as well.

Anyway, here's the bodice. Part of the beauty of a T-shirt dress is that you can use a lot of the existing hems and seams. In this case, you can keep the existing neck. Did you realize that a man's T-shirt opening is only sightly bigger than that in a 2T shirt? Kids really do have big heads...

Here's the cut bodice...

...that is still attached at the shoulder seams.

Next, I cut the top of the shirt just under the armpits, and at the bottom to make it the same length as my pattern dress.

Finally, I cut two rectangles to make the pockets. Here are all the pieces.

Next, I sewed them all together. At this point, I started talking on the phone, and forgot to take pictures of the sewing process...oops! But this is what I did:

  1. Sew the side openings of the bodice. You could sew them without finishing the edges because knit doesn't unravel, but I have a new serger (did I mention that?) so I did it just because I can.

  2. Sew the sides of the skirt.

  3. Gather the top of the skirt so that it fits with the bodice. Attach the skirt to the bodice.

  4. Hem, then attache the pockets. I cut the pockets from the sleeves, using the hemmed bottom edge of the sleeve for the opening of the pocket. Attach to skirt. I put these right across the side seam, just like my pattern dress.

In true non-perfectionist style, I left the armholes and bottom hem unfinished for that cut-off-T-shirt rolled up look. Maybe it's because the shirt is grey, but Hanna went around looking a little like a scrawny teenage wrestler in a cut-off T-shirt trying to show off muscles he doesn't have. But she loved that her new dress has Mickey on it, and loves even more that it's made from Daddy's shirt.

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