Vintage Pattern Toddler Dress

I mentioned in this post, this post and this post that my husband’s aunt gave me a huge bag of patterns she used to sew clothes for herself and her two daughters, and I can’t believe how much use I’ve gotten out of them. I’m the same size she was in the 70’s/80’s, so I have this amazing stash of vintage patterns that just happen to fit me. Some of them are a little too much to wear these days, but really, it’s only a matter of time until these things come back in style.

I hadn’t used any of the baby/children patterns until I made this overall dress last week. It was really easy to make, and in my biased opinion, I think it turned out really cute. I made a couple of changes to what the pattern calls out (details below), but otherwise I would totally recommend this pattern for beginning sewers.

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If you want to make this dress yourself, check out this link for supplies I use for just about every project. The vintage pattern I used is Butterick 3370.

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Pattern adaptation #1: Because the intention of this dress 30+ years ago was to be pretty short in order to be in line with 80’s fashion, I actually added 3″ to the length of the dress. I wanted it to be more modern and not look too much like it came out of the 80’s.

Pattern adaptation #2: The pattern calls for a bias tape to finish the neck and armholes and I made a self-fabric facing instead. I hate using bias tape unless I have to (it takes longer and it’s easy to mess up the tension/stretch when applying), and I think making a facing is much faster and leaves a much nicer look. If you want to try this too:

Just cut an additional front and an additional back piece that ends 3″ below the armhole.

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Sew the side seams of the front and back facings together, then sew the side seams of the front and back body pieces together.

With right sides together, line up the facing pieces so they match the front and back body pieces and pin. Sew around the outside.

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Trim seams and clip curves.

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Turn right side out and press.

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To keep the facing from flipping up, tack at the side seam for a couple of stitches. If you do it directly in the outside seam, nobody will be able to see it.

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It might show on the interior facing side, but I never worry about that.

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The interior ends up looking much more professional and finished than a binding tape would have been able to do.

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Since I didn’t have a little friend in mind when I made this dress, I decided to sell it on Etsy. Check the listing out here!

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