Woman's Shirt to Toddler Dress

You can find a number of tutorials for making dresses from (large) men's shirts such as this one and this one. But would it be possible to make one from a small women's blouse? I wondered.  I had one that had once been a favorite of Kara's.

Kara working on her veil on her wedding day

She'd even worn it to the church on the day she was married. I thought it would be fun if I could re-purpose it into a sweet little dress for one of her sweet little daughters.

1. The men's shirts tutorials require too much fabric, so I decided to work with some nightgown patterns. First I cut a front and back yoke. I basically used this nightgown pattern.

2. Next, I cut out two cap sleeves. I was able to get these from the cuffs on the original sleeve, taking advantage of prefinished edges! (Yes! That's one of the things I love about remaking clothes - you can so often use edges and avoid hemming!)  
I worried a bit about how the sleeves bend in the middle, but I hoped that wouldn't matter once the upper edge was gathered. I was right - it's completely unnoticeable.

3. From the rest of the shirt, I cut a front and back skirt.

4. And then I put everything together. So easy!

3 Responses
  1. How funny. By random coincidence, I am trying to convert two 2x shirts into dresses for the girls. Your refashion is very cute. I hope mine turns out as well as yours.

  2. Anne Says:


    What kind of dresses are you making from the 2X shirts? I made a fairy romper costume for Jenny from a couple of XX shirts a few months ago. If I had known what I was doing, I probably would have only needed one shirt, but I had a bit too much trial and error. Or too much error. Or something. But it was OK in the end.

  3. The dresses are sleeveless, sun dresses. I'm sort of following a couple of tutorials. This is what I'm hoping for sort of... http://www.danamadeit.com/2008/07/tutorial-the-shirt-dress.html