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Sew a Simple T-shirt Dress

shirt dress

You will need:

Extra-large T-shirt

A crew-neck or scoop-neck tank top that fits the wearer well

Chalk

Yardstick

Embroidery thread and needle

Optional: Fabric paint, stencil, and foam brush

shirt dress step 1

1. Turn the T-shirt inside out and smooth or press out any wrinkles. Lay the tank top on the T-shirt. With the chalk, trace around the tank's armholes, neckline, and shoulders, adding a half inch above each shoulder seam.

shirt dress step 2

2. With the yardstick, draw a chalk line from each armhole to the T-shirt's bottom hem. (If you're making a shirt, skip to the next step.) To create the dress's flared shape, mark a point on the hemline 5 inches from each marked line. Draw a new line that connects this point to each armhole. These will be the side seams of the dress.

shirt dress step 3

3. Thread the needle with embroidery thread and knot it. Sew a running stitch along both shoulder seams and both side seams, 1/2 inch inside the chalk lines. Sew a few extra stitches at each end of the line, knot the thread close to the fabric, and trim any excess.

shirt dress step 4

4. With scissors, cut through both layers of fabric, along the chalk lines for the armhole, shoulders, and neckline, and along the stitched side seams.

shirt dress step 5

5. Turn the garment right side out. If desired, embellish it using fabric paint and a stencil.

Quick Sewing Tip: To shorten the garment, simply measure, mark, and cut along the bottom edge. There's no need to sew a hem, because T-shirt fabric doesn't fray.

Originally published in the August 2013 issue of FamilyFun