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Saturday, July 20, 2013

Crochet Bodice Dress

This is a super easy pattern, and if you have basic sewing knowledge you can do it! My goal with this pattern is to really explain the how's...not just throw a pattern out there at you.  The beauty of this dress is there are so many ways you can do it.  You can keep it simple or go crazy.  This comes from my own trial and error.
The first dress I made, my eight year old was my guinea pig!

What you need: (This pattern is for a children's size 7)'
  • About a yard of fabric (I used a cotton)
  • Worsted weight yarn in the colors you want, sometimes I edge the bodice in a different color (This yarn is from Hobby Lobby)
  • Size H hook
  • Sewing machine with what ever thread color you need
  • Pins
 The Bodice:
Chain 72
YO HDC second Ch from hook, HDC across, Ch2 turn
Repeat for a total of 16 rows (I told you this was easy!)

finished seam
Now you need to sew the bodice together to make a tube, I like to fold it in half and crochet down the edges rather than whip stitch it together.  I find it holds better and doesn't stretch.
Once you have it together its time to do the straps.

Count 4 stitches away from the seam in both directions (8 stitches in between straps) Ss, ch2, hdc 6 stitches, ch 2. repeat for a total of 16 hdc rows.  Do not finish off if you are going to crochet the seam (see below)
Dress with ruffles and small flowers added to bodice.
No, I have no magic trick for sewing the strap to the front, You can sew it together but, again, I crochet it on.  Turn the bodice inside out, lay the two edges together and crochet across.  Again, a stronger seam than a whip stitch.  To line up where to sew it on the front, simply make sure the back seam is centered, and line up the straps evenly with the front, make sure there are 8 stitches between the two.
Now all you need to do is finish the edges (sc), You'll have to do it in three places; the outsides and armpits of the dress, and the neck and inside of the straps.  This is where you could add another color or even ruffles. Make sure you 2sc in the corners
To do ruffles:
On the outside of the strap, starting at the base: sc, 5dc, sc* repeat until you reach the other side (you're just doing a shell) 

Now its time to prepare the skirt:
I am going on from here assuming you know how to sew :)
Sew an 1 inch hem
On the opposite edge, fold and iron a 1/4 in then fold over again a 1/2 in and sew. (this is the edge that goes along the bodice)
Fold in half and sew together with a 1/2 in seam.
Iron seam edges flat

Sewing the bodice to the skirt:
Now here's where it can get tricky.  There's no real easy way to explain this so I'll do my best.

Turn the bodice and the skirt inside out.
Line up the bodice and skirt seam and pin. Now you are going to make two pleats in the front and two in the back, or if you're an over achiever you can make a bunch of little pleats all the way around...basically you're making the skirt fit the bodice... to make the pleats you fold the fabric over on itself and pin it. Line the edge of the fabric up with the top of first HDC row (so you'll have a full row under the edge)
This dress I pleated all the way around instead of two large pleats.
Once you have pinned all the way around, (I recommend pinning A LOT! You don't want that baby to move.) set your sewing machine to a zig zag stitch and sew the skirt and bodice together. Go slow, My machine did well, the crochet seem is pretty thick so I am extremely cautious here.

Whew! the hardest part is over...now to accessorize!
For this pink and white dress I crocheted ties onto it...easy enough..

Chain 70, ss along whole front just above the zig zig stitch, chain 70, ch2 turn now HDC all the way across.  Make it as thick as you want! On you last row, line up the rows of the band with the dress and crochet to the dress at the same time...or you can leave it loose...or sew it on.

The flower is a three tier flower, I found the pattern for this one here

Pocket:  Okay the pocket was my first ever and I free handed it...

If I missed something or  you have a question please feel free to ask!

This dress is an example of a simple belt and ruffle sleeve. (Ignore my horrible messy house in the background)

Another variation on the belt.  This particular dress I made the bodice shorter, more of an A-line dress. I used a wide ribbon for the tie and its crocheted in a herringbone half-double.


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