The Super Simple Summer Dress (A Tutorial)

Super Simple Summer Dress using a tank top. DIY tutorial via lilblueboo.com

One of Boo’s favorite little dresses is one that Lisa made for her almost 2 years ago…..Boo is STILL wearing it and it just keeps getting shorter and shorter on her. The dress was made from a Dubble Bubble t-shirt and 2 layers of fabric on the bottom.  So super simple!

Super Simple Summer Dress using a tank top. DIY tutorial via lilblueboo.com

 

To make a similer super simple summer dress, all you need is a ready made tank top and a small amount of fabric. I used my new Silhouette machine to cut a design for the front to match!

First, I started with just a store bought tank top and cut off the bottom hem:

 

Super Simple Summer Dress using a tank top. DIY tutorial via lilblueboo.com

I used smooth heat transfer paper…..

 

Super Simple Summer Dress using a tank top. DIY tutorial via lilblueboo.com

….and a floral image download to embellish the front of the tank:

 

Super Simple Summer Dress using a tank top. DIY tutorial via lilblueboo.com

 

The Silhouette machine did the hard part:

 

Super Simple Summer Dress using a tank top. DIY tutorial via lilblueboo.com

 

I cut around the image leaving a small border and peeled off the excess heat transfer material:

 

Super Simple Summer Dress using a tank top. DIY tutorial via lilblueboo.com

 

I placed the heat transfer face down onto the tank….

 

Super Simple Summer Dress using a tank top. DIY tutorial via lilblueboo.com

….covered it with a cloth and ironed (on cotton setting) to adhere the image to the tank:

 

Super Simple Summer Dress using a tank top. DIY tutorial via lilblueboo.com

The finished heat transfer!

 

Super Simple Summer Dress using a tank top. DIY tutorial via lilblueboo.com

To make the 2-layer bottom portion of the dress I took two different fabrics and cut them to be different lengths. Just for reference, I used a 4T tank top and cut 2 pieces for the first layer 24″ x 11″ and 2 pieces for the second layer 24″ x 7″.

 

Super Simple Summer Dress using a tank top. DIY tutorial via lilblueboo.com

I cut 2 pieces of each fabric layer and sewed the ends shut:

 

Super Simple Summer Dress using a tank top. DIY tutorial via lilblueboo.com

Using a serger I finished the bottom hems of each layer:

 

Super Simple Summer Dress using a tank top. DIY tutorial via lilblueboo.com

 

And added a gathering stitch to the top of each layer:

 

Super Simple Summer Dress using a tank top. DIY tutorial via lilblueboo.com

Pulling the bobbin thread I gathered each layer to be the same width as the bottom of the tank top and placed the bottom layer inside the top layer:

 

Super Simple Summer Dress using a tank top. DIY tutorial via lilblueboo.com

I turned the bottom layers inside out and  inserted the tank top straight down into them so that the tank and fabric were right sides together:

 

Super Simple Summer Dress using a tank top. DIY tutorial via lilblueboo.com

Using my serger (or you can use a single needle) I attached all three layers together:

 

Super Simple Summer Dress using a tank top. DIY tutorial via lilblueboo.com

Once attached, the skirt flips down and the dress is finished!

 

Super Simple Summer Dress using a tank top. DIY tutorial via lilblueboo.com

So sweet and easy!

 

Super Simple Summer Dress using a tank top. DIY tutorial via lilblueboo.com

 

 

 

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Comments

  1. 1

    Thanks for the great tutorial. I think I will give this a try this weekend!

    Kelli @ loveoursimplelife.blogspot.com

  2. 2

    This just got added to my ‘ must’ try soon list

  3. 3

    I love these dresses! They are so easy and FAST to make. I also use Stay Tape at the seam between the tank and fabric to keep the tank from stretching out of shape. Keep these great ideas coming!

  4. 4

    Once again Ashley you have posted a fun and easy tutorial! I will try this one next :). Thanks for sharing!!

  5. 5

    Awesome! Thankyou!!!:D

  6. 6
    Jennifer Dingman says:

    ok now I really want the silhoutte!

  7. 7
    Kirsten Taylor says:

    Love this! We are heading to the fabric store now! This is perfect for the summer!

  8. 8

    DARN YOU and your silhouette machine tutorials. Do you think I’m made of money or something. I know the bible says not to covet they neighbors belongings but since you’re across the US, I should be safe on that one.

  9. 9

    I love this. Gotta run and dig out some old tanks now;)

  10. 10
    J. Blamy says:

    Love this. Thanks for the tut.

  11. 11
    yanira clemente says:

    Make fun things for my baby.

  12. 12

    I made this for my 3 year old and she loves it. So easy to make. Thanks for sharing.

  13. 13

    Love the dress, I will be making this for my granddaughter. She loves dresses!!
    Thanks for all your beautiful tutorials.

  14. 14

    Hello! I tried this with cotton fabric for the skirt but was wondering if you would use the same dimensions with knits? My daughter has texture sensitivities and won’t wear any of the cotton clothes I’ve made her – they have to be knit. She loves the dresses I’ve made her from your Sienna pattern but I wanted to do some shortcut ones for the summer – Old Navy has $2 tank sale this weekend and I thought this would be a good time to cheat. :) I haven’t done too many gathered knit skirts so I wanted to ask if this would be too much fabric. I planned to use your optional ruffle bottom for the Sienna as a guide but wouldn’t mind a bit more of a gather.

  15. 15

    I just need to take the time to say thank you!! I sew (corny I know, but couldn’t resist haha) appreciate it! It is so selfless of you to take the time to make all these tutorials! I can’t wait to get started on this dress!!

  16. 16
    Rachel Robertson says:

    Wow – I read this tutorial late last night, then dreamed the completed product and got up and made it this morning! It’s winter here in Australia so I made a long sleeved version with appliqué on the front from Joel Dewberry Heirloom collection and it was so easy and so lovely!!!!! My daughter wants to wear it to preschool tomorrow and I think I might just have to make a few more!!

  17. 17

    Thank you for a FABULOUS tutorial! I too have been dreaming about this simple but beautiful dress!!! Endless possibilities! I’ve made one for the Jubilee celebrations here in the UK using Crowns and Union Jack Flags prints from the Henley Studio collection. I’ve added a crown applique (made from the crown print) and I have one SUPER-excited six year old. I’ll be using this tutorial for more dresses!!!! ;-)

  18. 18
    CAITLIN RIVERA says:

    Funny! I was already looking through Violeta’s draw and at the shop for tank tops to make easy dresses out of. Then I found this! I can use two layers instead of one! Great idea! I haven’t got the silhoutte machine to do that little detail, nor do I have a serger, but I can make it work! This reminds me of the dresses my mom used to sell at a flea market growing up. She’d silkscreen a design on a tank top/t-shirt and then sew a cool bottom on-usually African print material. They sold so easily!

  19. 19
    CAITLIN RIVERA says:

    Yeah I made it! (I had a hiccup-sewing the top inside out. A seam ripper later and some more stitches and it’s perfect! My 7 1/2 month old looks so cute!! =)) THX

  20. 20
    Kristen Huss says:

    Love this! How would you finish the edges without using a serger? I am still learning to use a basic machine. :)

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