With the warmer weather approaching and spring consignment sales picking up, I am obsessed with finding quick, easy sundresses for Maggie. Unfortunately, they are priced more than I want to pay for something that is either going to be worn through mud and manure or only as a bathing suit cover up. So I started searching the web, and came across these "pillowcase dresses."
The original design for the dress is centuries old I imagine - made literally from old pillowcases. Ones I saw online are typically made of those charming vintage cases with the lovely embroidery on the open side. After looking at several sites, I decided I could probably make the dress myself. And I could do it without a pattern.
I wanted some color and pattern to my dresses so I headed to JoAnn for a look-see. I fell in love with HUNDREDS of fabrics. But I limited myself to just a few this first go round. I ended up with a watermelon print, a sweet turquoise and celery paisley and I grabbed this strawberry fabric because it has the elasticized top that makes a really cute dress, and would be so easy to make! I also picked up coordinating green satin ribbon for the straps/neck ties and
This is the first version of the dress I made. I didn't add anything to the chest of the dress, just folded down the top of the dress about 1/4 of an inch, ironed it, then folded it over again about 1/2 an inch and sewed it straight across. Then I took green ribbon, attached a safety pin to one end and threaded it through the front and back "yoke" of the neck. The ribbon can be tightened to accommodate almost any size.
I'm still experimenting with technique, but overall, it's been a rewarding process. I'm not sure if I'm saving that much money as fabric is still rather price, but I guess if you factor I'm getting on average two dresses per yard, and I only am spending $3.99 a yard, the dress prices out under $5. Not bad for a novice seamstress.
Now, here's hoping Maggie likes all the dresses I make!