& Costumes Website
Sleeveless Dress Pattern
full size pattern (1 square equals 1 inch (2.5cm), will fit specialty
dolls such as 15-16 inch Kathe Kruse, 16-17 inch
Sasha, 17.25-inch Natterer Sunihil,
18 inch Magic Attic, 16.5 inch Theodor Recknagel
Dolls, and other similar slim collectible and antique dolls.
This pattern is for all styles of the dresses: sleeveless, short sleeve and long sleeve.
This pattern is my original design and may not be used commercially.
Pattern pieces - quarter inch seam allowance included
Dress front- Cut one on front fold.
Dress back - Cut two pieces.
Skirt - Cut a length 30 inches wide and 9 inches long for a finished skirt length of 7.5 inches as in this dress on the 16.5 inch doll.
To make your 1-inch square (2.5cm) grid graph paper
First, take an 8.5x11 inch piece of plain paper and draw 1 inch squares - I do this by drawing horizontal lines 1 inch apart down the page, and then vertical lines 1 inch apart across the page.
Next, looking at the .jpg image you want to enlarge, copy what is in each of my squares into your larger squares.
Seam allowances of 1/4 inch are included.
This pattern will fit specialty dolls such as 16-18 inch Kathe Kruse, 16-17 inch Sasha, 17.25 inch Natterer Sunihil, 18 inch Magic
Attic, 16.5 inch Theodor Recknagel Dolls, and other
similar slim collectible and antique dolls.
- Press, pin and sew doll clothes in that order.
- Sew hems on clothing by hand for a fine dressmaker's touch.
- Choose smaller rather than larger prints for dress fabric, keeping in mind the scale of the doll. I like to use quilting material.
- Make the dresses from cotton and natural fabrics if you'd like to keep to historical time periods.
- Use washable materials and trims. I use the softest and closest weave cotton I can find.
- If the clothing is for a child's doll, use velcro closures rather than buttons or hooks and eyes for safety's sake.
With right sides of back and front bodice facing, sew together at shoulders and at underarm seams. Press open.
Repeat for bodice lining.
Place good side of bodice facing raw side and sew all edges except waist seam.
Examine this photo for help:
Sew back seam of skirt leaving 2 inches at top open as an extension of the center back bodice opening for ease in dressing doll. Roll in the raw edges above top of back skirt seam and blind stitch. When dress is completed sew a velcro dot just above waistline and at neckline to overlap bodice back one fourth inch.
Either gather one fourth inch from top edge of skirt or make small pleats as I have - see photo detail below - to fit bodice lower edge.
To make hem, turn up lower edge twice and blind stitch.
How to sew bodice to skirt
I make this a half inch seam for both skirt and bodice, because of gathered top edge of skirt at waist, and so bodice and skirt do not pull apart with use.
Fold under one half inch along lower edge of bodice and lay over top of skirt. Join together with topstitching. This technique forms a nice flat seam.
Examine this photo for help:
For back closure sew on a velcro dot at neck edge and just above waist to keep one side of back overlapped.
Now decorate the dress if you wish
Have fun making your doll dresses!
Article, Pattern and Photos by Susan Kramer
Baby Christening Gown
E-pattern by Susan Kramer
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page created March 7, 2010; updated November 7, 2014