Dress Pattern TBPG Project




  • Please note that the patterns are exclusively for the Treasured Babies' Program and we would appreciate them not being copied for other purposes.
  • All seam allowances are 6mm unless stated otherwise.
  • Trace paper patterns onto interfacing/other where possible. Make bodice back as an entire pattern piece (i.e. cut interfacing on the fold as this saves time cutting out, especially when multiple garments are being made).
  • It is very important to press where indicated as this will result in a well finished garment. The same results are not possible if pressing is left till the end. Making multiples of garments at one time will streamline this process.
  • It is also important to machine neaten, (overlock or zig-zag all raw edges), to create quality, well-finished garments.
  • Please use only 6mm metal snap fasteners, preferably 'Hemline' brand if available.


Step 1. Select fabrics which are suitable: fine pinwale cord (use Bebe cord which is available from Spotlight - pale pink or white) or other warm fabric. These should be lined with poplin/voile or batiste. Cotton fabrics should be lined with flannelette.

Step 2. Cut out pattern, ensuring that bodice back & front pattern pieces are both facing up on the fabric, and that they are facing the same direction if using a fabric with nap, e.g. pinwale cord.

HINT: It doesn't really matter which is the right side of the lining for poplin/voile/Batiste.

Step 3. With right sides facing, join bodice fronts and back together at shoulders. Repeat for lining, ensuring that you have the pieces put together the correct way. Trial this by putting the pinned pieces together before sewing. (See figure 1).

HINT: For the left & right fronts put on the reverse side from what is done for the fabric.

Step 4. Stitch shoulder seams. Press seams open.

Step 5. With right sides together, place bodice and bodice lining together and pin, matching shoulder seams. Stitch all seams except the lower edge of the back bodice and the lower edge of the right front bodice, wider bodice piece.

HINT: If a trim such as lace or ric-rac is to be added, this should be done by stitching the back neckline and diagonal seams ONLY, pressing the seam out, carefully applying the trim), then completing the stitching as above. This step is not necessary if using a daisy/other trim which will not fray at the cut ends.

Step 6. Clip all curved edges closely, especially around the neck. Trim neckline to 4mm. Clip corners. Turn out, using a skewer/other to create neat corners. Press well.

Step 7. With right sides together, stitch front skirt section to the lining down the side, across the hemline and up the second side. Repeat for back of skirt. Clip corners, turn out, using a fine bamboo skewer/other to create neat corners. Press well.

HINT: If a trim such as lace or ric-rac is to be added, this should be done by stitching the bottom seam, pressing that seam open, attaching the trim then stitching the two side seams. Commence stitching from part was along the lower seam. Clip etc., as above. If used, trim is only needed on the skirt front.

Step 8. Gather the front and back skirt pieces and pull in gathers evenly to fit the front right and back bodice.

HINT: Using 2 rows of gathering gives the best result.

Step 9.Join the skirt pieces to the front and back bodices.

Overlock/machine-neaten edge. Press with the seam towards the bodice.

Step 10. On the outside, top-stitch approximately 4mm from the seam line on the bodice side.

HINT: If you have an open embroidery foot this makes top-stitching easy and neat. Simply line up the inside of the foot with the edge of the fabric, adjust the needle position if necessary and sew!

Step 11. Stitch 6mm (4mm for smaller sizes) from the edge around all edges, including sleeve edges. Commence on the lower edge of the left hand bodice so that the reinforcing stitches will be concealed. Decorative stitches can be used if desired. This is not necessary if trim has been used.

Step 12. Apply small (6mm) metal snap fasteners/press studs, sewing the male parts to the inside fronts and the female parts to the inside backs.

  • The lower corner of each sleeve cuff.
  • The skirt bodice seam on each side.
  • One to join the inside of the tapered right bodice to the lower left corner of the left bodice (behind the button).
  • Half way down each side of the skirt.

Step 13. Apply a small button/ribbon/other to the lower left corner of the right bodice.

Step 14. Press garment well



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