Pillowcase Dresses

Thursday I spent the day with my nieces for no reason in particular. I gave my sister the day off. Her house is clean and mine was an absolute wreck. We had so much fun making the mess though. We spent time making pillowcase dresses.  They were such great helpers.  I used something similar to this website: Cut Out and Keep. I didn’t use an actual pillowcase though. However, I might just have to start visiting the local second-hand stores. It would have been so much easier! Not nearly as much hemming.


Here is a quick run-down of how I made them. Sorry I didn’t take pictures along the way. I wasn’t going to blog about it, but then I had so many questions. 🙂

1.I basically just cut 2 rectangles (making my own pillowcase). Measuring the girls from the top of their neck, to just below their knees (for the length). I made the rectangles wide enough to just wrap around them just a bit, not the whole way. (Allowing room for all the hemming that had to happen).

2. I cut out the arms as showed in the blog mentioned above and then hemmed the arms.

3.I sewed the two dress pieces together (inside out so you cannot see the sewing).

4. Then I just hemmed the top of the dress.I already hemmed the arm areas, so it makes for a nice hem when you sew the top. I made the back of the dress slightly higher than the front. Make sure you don’t sew the hem shut, that is where the ribbon needs to slide through.

5. Then I hemmed the bottom of the dress to the correct length.

6. I fit a ribbon through both hems and I simply tied them together.


Here is what I learned-

  • You only need 1 yard of fabric per child (I had extra left over).
  • I used 3 yards of ribbon for both dresses and the cute belt.
  • It helps to have a shirt or tank top in their size to cut the arm holes. Otherwise you have to keep holding it up to them and they get a bit annoyed. 🙂
  • These dresses are extremely forgiving. If you use too much fabric.. too little… you can’t really tell.
  • Your arm holes really don’t matter either if they are too large or too small because the ribbon at the top will adjust all of that. You can just tie the ribbon tighter or give a little more to make them bigger.
  • Sometimes a girl will want accessories and think the dress is not quite ‘fashionable’ enough. So I did make a matching belt and a headband for the purple dress. There was enough fabric for that too.
  • Finally, I would recommend using an actual pillowcase to save time.


Total cost of both dresses was $6.00 because I already had the thread and I got the fabric on clearance. Great deal! 🙂


10 thoughts on “Pillowcase Dresses

    • I would love to make these if Abbie isn’t too big for them. I also have two Great granddaughters could do for too. Thanks for sharing Sondra! 🙂 They are adorable girls!

      • Thank you JoAnn! I don’t think she is too big at all. You just might have to get 1 1/2 yards of fabric (you’ll have to be the judge). I was thinking I could use the same technique on an old t-shirt too. So maybe you could get an oversized t-shirt and cut the top apart to make a dress 🙂 You could get a cute t-shirt at the Goodwill for less than $3 too. Thanks for checking out my blog.

    • I am so blessed! They are adorable and have such personality! 🙂 We had a “sewing store” going on while we were making the dresses. I was the dress maker and they were the boss and the headband designer. 🙂 Ha!

  1. You are so creative. These are awesome! Now, if I only had a girl to make them for!!! When The kids go back to school I plan on reteaching myself basic sewing. I wish you lived closer so you could help me. I’m positive none of my friends know how to sew:-) I want to make PJ pants for Christmas/winter. I’m pretty sure the fabric costs much less than buying the pants in a store. Also on my bucket list for next year is to attend a mud sale. I have heard about them since we moved here and want to catch one sometime.

    • Thank you! My mother-in-law sews and the first thing she taught me how to do was curtains for my living room. Then I sewed a headliner and door pads for my husbands 1964 Nova (that was a bit much to do, but YouTube helped with that project). Since then, I figure.. what’s the worst that could happen?! I am sure there is a YouTube video for how to make PJ pants and it would be cheaper 🙂 I would suggest going to a Mudsale. I am going to one this Saturday by my house. Mudsales are great because they are Amish run and the crafts/antiques always go for a great price. That’s where I find most of my garden finds. 🙂 This year I’ll be bidding on perennials at the flower auction.

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