So a friend from colorguard...yes I was a band geek, go ahead and joke all you want, but it was AWESOME, has a sweet darling baby girl that she would love to cloth in adorable pillowcase dresses without the "boutique" price. So, here goes my second DIY tutorial...I know you are all anxiously waiting the diaper bag tutorial...but alas, my local walmart and I had issues with finding people to cut fabric that I wanted for the bag until just recently! Hopefully, you'll get that post soon, and since it's a beach bag made over...it'll be seasonally appropriate!
So, before we begin this tutorial, I will go ahead and say, that I talk sweet nothings to my sewing machine, offer it lots of praise (and would probably bring it offerings of oil for it's lovely little innard parts) and hope that it decides to play nice. I am a firm believer that sewing machines have personalities...feelings...and can make your life MISERABLE if they so wish...so I treat mine nicely and hope that it likes me. The night before St. Patty's day...it liked me A LOT! See that cute lil dress up there.
I laid my fabric out and cut in such a manner that the slevage (that nice finished edge that won't fray) would be my bottom hem when covered by some sweet ribbon, and I folded my fabric so that my daughter's dress would only have one side seam.
Some would call it cheating...I call it being smart! Please note that this was cheap fabric ($2.77 for a yard which made a dress a skirt and has plenty should I decide to do something else with the scraps), so I didn't mind the waste.
I eyeballed all my measurements. Meaning that I laid my fabric out, thought about my sweet Anna and cut what I thought would be a little larger than her width (because the girls find my sewing measuring tape amuzing...I can never find it!).
Making your arm holes
Then about four inches down from the top of the fabric (the non-slevage end) I cut tiny little dashes to serve as guides for making my armpit holes.
Then, using a circular guide...also known as Kaelyn and Anna's airplane flying book, I marked off a perfect curve for the armpits. You can also use a salad plate, or anything round...they do make special sewing tools for this, but why waste your money?
Here is what your dress should look like. See how my finger is showing you that the fabric is indeed folded over!
Now you are almost done cutting, you just need to cut one or two long strips about 2 inches wide for your bias tape. What's that you ask? Well, I never used it before but it sure does make your dress look purty!
Making Bias Tape for finishing your arm holes
Take your two long strips about two inches wide and lay them out on your ironing board with a very hot iron.
Fold each strip in half (don't worry about cutting in straight lines, in the end, it'll all work out) and iron down.
Open up your fold, and use the center crease as a guide to fold the ugly ends of your fabric in. Iron those down.
Repeat on the other side...then fold in half with the ugly ends tucked in and iron down for good measure.
You will use this to finish the ugly arm pit holes...Open up the bias tape fold and place it over the armpit hole and sew a simple seam all the way down. I cut my bias tape AFTER sewing it to the armpit hole to make sure I have PLENTY of tape.
This is what the fabric looks like prior to adding bias tape after you open the fold! Now, this is how you add the bias tape for a better understanding.
See how you tuck the dress into the fold...then just sew it closed and viola you have finished edges!
If you want the inside of your dress to be pretty, do this! If you don't care...skip!
Now, this is the point that I make all my remained edges of fabric pretty by folding the unfinished edges in, ironing them down, and then folding them once again and ironing them down. Once they are ironed neatly, I sew a simple straight stitch all the way down.