A few days ago I showed you how to make a very simple jersey dress without the need for a pattern. If you missed the original post, you can check it out here. My dress is so comfy I’ve been wearing it heaps and often get compliments on it, which is always nice! Now I want to make more of these dress in different colours and figured that drafting a pattern from the original dress will make creating subsequent dresses much quicker! You won’t need to fuss around with measurements or much fitting. Instead you can just cut around the pattern and sew it up! Here’s how to draft a pattern from your finished DIY jersey dress:
You will need:
- A big piece of paper, twice the length of your dress. I use brown craft paper that I buy on big a roll from Officeworks, but you could always tape together some sheets of newspaper if you don’t have craft paper.
- Pencil and texta
- Tape Measure
- Finished DIY Jersey Dress
Fold the long piece of paper in half so you have a fold along a short edge. Lay the dress on top of the paper, lining up the fold of the shoulders with the fold of the paper. This way you can cut the front and back together in one big pattern piece. Pin the dress to the paper being very careful to not stretch it out of shape.
Trace around the outside of the dress with your pencil. To mark the front neckline, use a pin to poke holes through the paper at regular intervals along the neckline.
Unpin the dress from the paper. Now you need to neaten up the lines and make sure both sides are even. Mark the centre point of the neck and rule a perpendicular line from this point down the centre of the dress. You can use this line to make sure the base of the armholes and the base of the hem on each side are evenly spaced from the centre line, making adjustments as necessary. The centre line will also act as a grain line when using your pattern. Measure the shoulders and make sure they’re both the same width. Measure the armholes and make sure they’re both the same length. Likewise, measure the side seams from the underarm point to the hem to make sure they are both the same length. Make sure the shoulder/sleeve corners are at right angles and make sure the hem corners are also right angles, otherwise you’ll end up with funny points/dips on your shoulders or hem.
Add 2.5 cm (1″) hem allowance to the bottom of the pattern, add 6 mm (1/4″) seam allowance to the side seams, add 1 cm (3/8″) seam allowance to the armhole edge and add 3 mm (1/8″) seam allowance to the neckline. You might like to go over these lines with a texta you know they are your cutting lines.
Neaten up the necklines, but only on one half of the dress. I’ll show you how to cut the neckline evenly later on. Make sure that the necklines at at right angles to the centre line.
Cut out the dress pattern along the cutting lines, through both layers of paper but do not cut out the neckline yet.
Unfold the dress and refold it in half lengthwise, matching up the shoulder points. Use a few pins to hold the paper together. Cut out the back neckline, as shown.
Unpin and unfold the paper, refolding it along the shoulder line.
Pin the neckline edges together so they don’t slip around and cut out the back neckline through the other layer of paper. This other layer is the pattern for the back of the dress.
Unpin and unfold your pattern again, matching up the shoulders. Pin around the front neckline to hold the layers of paper together. Cut out the front neckline, as shown.
Unpin and unfold and your pattern is ready to be used.
Just lay it open on top of a long piece of jersey, make sure the grain line is parallel to the selvedge of the fabric, pin in place and cut it out. You can then sew it up according to my instructions in the original DIY Jersey Dress post.
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