I've put together a little tutorial from the little Butterfly easter dress I made. The tutorial dress is a variation, with the solid skirt and contrasting bodice. Just another idea with the basic dress.
So here we go!
fabric varies depending on your design, but this combo shown above you'll need:
-1/4 yard main print (gray flower)
-1/8 yard bodice (pink)
-20" bias tape (1" double fold)
(I chose to make my own bias tape to match, here is Dana's tutorial to make your own bias tape.
I don't have her fancy iron folder gadgets, but you only need 20" so just using an iron works)
-9" to 12" elastic 1/2" wide
1. SIDE SEAMS
Take your two bodice pieces, and with right sides together, sew the two side seams with 1/2" seam allowance. Zig-zag or serge edges if your fabric will fray.
2. SHIR BODICE
To scrunch up the bodice, you sew shirring rows across. To shir, it's just like sewing regularly, except you switch out your bobbin with elastic thread. I find elastic thread in the notions section in a package.
3. ADD SLEEVES
It's easier to hem your sleeves before they're attached, so iron 1/4" up, then fold it another 1/4" and top-stitch the hem for both sleeves.
Then to pin the sleeves to the bodice, you'll have the bodice inside out, and the sleeves right side out. First pin the two hemmed corners of the sleeve to the bodice side seam. Then pin your way up each side of the bodice, so the top of the arch on the sleeve shape will be pointing straight up when it's pinned.
Here's a close up of the two hemmed sleeve corners overlapping on the bodice side seam when the sleeve is sewn on.
When you sew the sleeve, it won't be a full circle as with normal sleeves. You'll just sew in the bottom half of the circle.
From here your bodice will be scrunched, with the sleeves on.
4. SEW NECK CASING
To complete the neck, you'll next sew on your bias tape to make a casing.
Rather than show each step, I'm just going to reference Dana's tutorials:
If you're making your own, you'll need approx 20" or so. If you're buying it, you'll have a lot left over from your package.
As you sew, the 4 places the sleeves connect to the bodice seems like a corner, but just stretch the corner straight and sew in a straight line, and it will curve open to look like this.
I sewed the strips every other one with 1/4" to 3/8" seam allowance, then pressed it flat and top-stitched the seams to help them lay flat. At this point you'll have a striped rectangle and the following instructions for attaching the skirt are the same.
1. Make Tube
Take your large rectangle of skirt, fold it in half with right sides together, and sew the seam with 1/2" seam allowance.
2. Gather Top of Skirt
To scrunch up your skirt, I just sew 1/4" from the top with my longest stitch length (5) and highest thread tension (10). The machine takes big stitches and gathers as you sew. This helps to have a uniform gather before attaching the skirt to the bodice.
3. Sew Skirt to Bodice.
With the skirt inside out, and the bodice right side out, you'll put the bodice with the head down into the skirt, so right sides are together. Adjust the gather in the skirt so it's even all the way around. I chose to line up the skirt seam in the center back of the bodice.
Then you just sew with 1/2" seam allowance around the skirt and bodice. You'll want to stretch your bodice a bit as you sew, since it will be scrunched up. That way the waist of the dress will stretch with the bodice.
4. Hem Skirt
You can finish the hem however you'd like. I made a 1/2" hem, then top-stitched a 1" wide pink grosgrain ribbon 1.5" from the bottom of the hem.