Shirring Christmas Night gown
First pick your fabric. I wanted mine to be Crhsitmasy so I chose white and red polka dots. This fabric is a silky type so it's is soft a comfy. I am going to use the red and white polka dots for Jammie bottoms for my little man.
You are going to be cutting 6 rectangles.
So you need to decide the size. I made mine for a 5 year old and a 12 month old. Here are the measurements that I used.
5yr old: Bodice (the shirring top) I cut two rectangles that were 20 inches wide and 7 high
Sleeves: I cut two rectangles that were 4 1/2 inches wide and 10 inches high
Bottom skirt: I cut two rectangles that were 22 inches wide and 21 inches H
12-18 month: Bodice: two rectangles that were 16 inches wide and 4 inches high
Sleeves: 4 inches wide 6 1/2 H
Bottom Skirt: 18 1/2 inches wide and 14 inches high
Here are the other sizes that I am pulling from a pattern
6-12 month Bodice 15 inch W 4 inch High Sleeves: 4 inch w 6 1/2 in h Skirt: 18 inch W 13 in H
18-24 month 16 in wide 4 1/2 High 4 1/2 W 7 H 19 W 14 1/2H
2T 16 1/2 W 5 H 4 1/2 W 7 1/2 H 19 1/2 W 16 H
3T 17 W 5 H 4 1/2 W 8 H 20 W 17 H
4T 17 1/2 W 5 1/2 H 4 1/2 W 8 1/2 H 20 1/2 W 18 H
As you can see for the most part with each size increase the measurements increases up to a half size. After size 5 though they increase by an inch rather then a half inch so if you need a bigger size you can pretty much figure it out. (NOTE: I have made a couple of dresses using these measurements for my girls I have noticed that the baby sizes are pretty much right on but my 5 year old I always use the sizes for a seven year using this particular measuring chart. My five year old is pretty average maybe a little bit bigger she wears a size 6 in regular clothing)
Ok so now you have your 6 rectangles cut out. Now it's time to get to the fun stuff. Don't be overwhelmed figuring out your sizing was prob the hardest part!
So with right sides together sew both pieces of your bodice (this is your medium sized rectangle the part over the bust) together and then again with right sides together sew both pieces of your bottom skirt together.
Next sew a rolled hem with your machine around the top of your bodice and the bottom of your bottom skirt. If your machine doesn't do a rolled hem, don't freak out. Just pull out your trusty iron and fold the edge over about a 1/4 inch and iron and then another 1/4 inch and iron again. Then you are going to take your ironed pieces and sew a straight stitch right along the fold to hold that hem. Look at the picture so you can visualize that hem!
You are going to be doing a hem on the long sides of each sleeve rectangle too so if you wanted you could do all of your ironing at once.
Ok Next let's do the gather on your bottom skirt. I love the gather stitch! IF you are new to sewing once you have learned a gather stitch you will feel like you are an amazing sewer! It's just fun because there are so many things you can make with the gather stitch. SO... at the top of your bottom skirt you are going to simply sew a straight line all the way around your skirt. DON'T back stitch and set your machine's stitch size to the longest stitch setting possible. Then just sew!! At the end of your straight giant stitch you will cut the thread(again no back stitching) and then grab one thread and pull. Instantly your clothing will start to gather. OK set that aside once it's gathered and we will move on to the fun shirring part.
Pic above is a gathered hem.
Next I shirred my sleeves. Remember to finish your long edges on your sleeve rectangles by either doing a rolled hem with your machine or iron and sewing a straight stitch hem. The you will shirr that away too. I only did 3 rows of shirring on each long side of the sleeve. So the edges of the sleeve gather and leaves the middle open. Does that make sense?? Look at the picture below if not.
Ok so now we are ready to pin this baby all together. This part is hard for me to explain so let me know if you have questions and really look at the picture it hopefully will help. Ok so What I did was kept the bottom skirt right side out and then I tucked the skirt up into the upside down inside out bodice. GET IT??? then I evened out the gathered top of the bottom skirt and pinned the right sides together of both the bodice and bottom skirt. Here I try to match all of the seams together so that the side seams of the bodice line up with the side seams of the skirt and then you sew around it.