How To Make A Pillowcase Dress

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Would you like to make a new dress or top for your little girl that costs practically nothing? Well, today’s tutorial does just that, as you will be repurposing something that you probably have plenty of around the house. Instead of throwing away old bedding, why not upcycle it? Here is how to make a pillowcase dress or top from something that you maybe would have just been sending to charity or landfill.

Plus, with very few bits of sewing and mainly straight line sewing, this is a project that is suitable for even the most beginner sewist! And is one of the quickest easy sews I know.

How To Make A Pillowcase Dress

How To Make A Pillowcase Dress - upcycle an old pillow case into a little summer dress or top. Hardly any experience is needed to make this pretty dress or top. Zero waste way of repurposing old bedding. Sustainable idea for making summer clothes using fabric that may have been destined for landfill. Very easy sewing tutorial for beginners. Simple sew for novice sewists. Make one today in super quick time!

I am a huge fan of upcycling. And I just love to reuse, recycle and repurpose cloth, old clothes and bedding. 

Here are some of my ideas on how to repurpose old clothes into new ones.

But when my little girl graduated from her toddler cot bed to a full size bed, I also ended up with a whole load of cot sized bedding and pillowcases. I thought it would be nice to reuse some of this pretty fabric. I have previously made a couple of dresses from the duvet covers and flat sheets.

Not a scrap of fabric gets wasted. See my post here on how to use up every last piece of fabric!

But I also really wanted to use up the pillowcases, so decided I would convert one into a dress. This is really easy to do, so read on to see how you can do it too!

You Will Need

Materials needed for pillowcase dress

  • An old pillowcase
  • 80-90 inches of ribbon, mine was about 3/4 inch wide, but 1/2 inch wide is fine too.
  • Coordinating thread, pins, scissors and a sewing machine.

Making The Dress

Take your pillowcase and iron it flat. The open end of the pillowcase is going to become the bottom of the garment. 

Pillowcase to convert

Cut off the closed end of the pillowcase with a straight cut across. This gives you a tube of fabric.

Straight cut at top of pillowcase

Fold the pillowcase in half lengthways and at the end you just cut, cut a quarter circle from the side with the seam. This gives you two identical armholes.

Cut armholes

Hem each of the armholes in turn. I prefer a double hemmed finish, but you can just do a raw edge hem.

hemming armholes

Cut your 80-90 inches of ribbon in half. We now need two make a casing at the top of the front and back for this ribbon. Fold over the top by 1/2 inch, then fold over again slightly larger than the width of your ribbon.

Making casing for ribbon

Press this fold. Stitch the created fold close to the edge to make a casing wide enough for the ribbon. Remember to backstitch at the start and end of your stitching. Repeat with the back.

Stitching casing

Thread the flat ribbon through the casing and ensure you have an equal amount of ribbon at either side of the front piece. At the midline of the casing, place a few stitches so that the ribbon cannot be pulled out by the child, as a loose ribbon could be a hazard. Repeat at the back.

inserting ribbon

even amount of ribbon

Midline stitches to hold ribbon

Tie the ribbons at the shoulders, ruching the front and back fabric as needed.

Tying ribbons

The Finished Dress

And try it on! The pillowcase I used was a toddler cot size and so was ever so slightly slightly too short for my 5 year old. But it looks great over leggings, and I imagine it would be a perfect length for a 3-4 year old.

You can shorten the dress for a smaller child or to make a top. And for an older child, add a panel of fabric to the bottom to make a longer dress.

The finished pillowcase dress

 

It is just the perfect little dress for summer, for going to the beach and playing out in. It has cost pennies to make and you know that reusing the fabric instead of buying a dress is so much more sustainable and better for the planet!

So now that you know how to make a dress from a pillowcase, do you think that you will be making this for your little one this summer? I love to see your makes. Do comment below, or find me over on my social media channels and tag me in your stuff!

And please do pin this post for later. 

How To Make A Pillowcase Dress - upcycle an old pillow case into a little summer dress or top. Hardly any experience is needed to make this pretty dress or top. Zero waste way of repurposing old bedding. Sustainable idea for making summer clothes using fabric that may have been destined for landfill. Very easy sewing tutorial for beginners. Simple sew for novice sewists. Make one today in super quick time!

 

3 Replies to “How To Make A Pillowcase Dress”

  1. Caz / InvisiblyMe says:

    Very cool idea! It’s a shame a pillow case wouldn’t be enough to cover even the top half of me otherwise I like the sound of this because I’ve got spare cases with beautiful designs on that I’d love to wear as a dress. Maybe I could get away with a skimpy top She looks great in this dress and the shoulder straps are a sweet touch. Great upcycle idea and fantastic tutorial.xx
    Caz / InvisiblyMe recently posted…Is The Covid19 Pandemic Increasing Your Stress Level?My Profile

    Reply

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