How to Make a Pieced Block Dress

Upcycled Pieced T-Shirt Dress with Stamped Fabric via

I made this pieced dress for Boo for Halloween.  It’s similar to the Sienna dress style but with a few more pieces:

Foam Sticker Stamp and Upcycled T-Shirt Dress via

It’s one of my favorite styles because I can use scraps of fabric and upcycled t-shirts to make:

Sienna Upcycled Dress into Bubble Dress via

She talks to fake cats:

Pieced Dress style via


Here’s one I made for The Next Lil Designer Series:

Pieced Bubble Dress DIY via


I use the Sweet Aline Dress pattern to make this style of dress because it goes up to larger sizes than the Sienna dress:

Upcycled Dress PDF A-Line Pattern via

A Halloween “bubble” style dress:

Hand Stamped Fabric and Pieced Upcycle T-Shirt Dress via

First, I take strips of fabric (wider than my pattern) and lay them down in the order I want them.

How to make strip work dress for upcycle via

VERY IMPORTANT: For each additional piece you add to the dress you will need to add a 1/2″ to your pattern length to account for the seams.

Cutting out your PDF pattern via

I then cut out my pattern:

Altering pattern for length via

To embellish some of the plain pieces I used regular foam craft stickers because you can buy them in themes…..which is perfect for holidays. Here is my black cat stamp:

(click here to see the full stamping tutorial)



Using foam stickers for stamps (and legos) via

And a bat stamp….I use legos for the base because they can be sized perfectly. You don’t want a lot of excess edge when stamping or you run the risk of the edge coming into contact with the fabric or paper:

Legos as stamp holders via

I use a paint roller or brayer to apply regular fabric paint or screen printing ink. I used Setacolor fabric paint (from Dharma Tradin) in this instance:

Setacolor fabric paints from Dharma Trading via


A black cat…..the printed eyes on the sticker actually leave behind an impression too!

Stamping (stenciling) with foam stickers via


Finished pieces just need to be heat set with an iron with dry:

Printing your own fabric via

I sew all my pieces together as shown (reversed seams with a serger but you can use a regular sewing machine as well) and then proceed with the pattern instructions:

Making an upcycled t-shirt pieced pattern via

On this particular dress to make it a bubble style I added a cotton/spandex band to the bottom. You just sew the band shut and fold it in half all the way around and then attach:

How to make a bubble dress via

Finished dress!

How to make an upcycled t-shirt dress via

So easy to make your own printed fabric and piece together for this look:

How to stamp your own fabric for upcycled t-shirt dress via

Boo loves it:

Upcycled and hand stamped Halloween pieced t-shirt bubble dress via

Update: I always get asked what Serger I recommend. I have a few but the one that is the most bang for the buck is the 2034D by Brother. You can get one for under $200 and you can run it into the ground.  I have two 1034Ds… for serging and I keep one modified for a 3-thread lettuce edge. The only upkeep is you may have to change the blades once a year…..just make sure not to tighten them too tight and they should last a long time.

Want to buy a serger?  This one is under $200.  Great for a beginner or experience seamstress. via



Click the image below to see the full tutorial on stamping with foam stickers!

Stamping with Foam Stickers via



  1. Karen says

    That is really cute, thanks for the tutorial. May I ask what you are using for a pattern weight? Would sure love one of those.

  2. Amy K. says

    Gotta get me some of those fancy stamping tools you use!! =) Thanks for sharing your secrets with us!

  3. Sylvia says

    Love this dress. What type or brand serger do you use ? I want to buy one but wasn’t sure what brand is better. I will only be making things for my little “grands” so I don’t need a heavy duty one.

  4. Megan P says

    I love this and would want to use dinosaurs and cars (my daughters favs) but on a dress how adorable would this be!

  5. Joy T. says

    I predict a run on foam stickers at crafts stores everywhere 😛 Awesome idea! I can’t believe I missed the original post on this concept, so glad you gave it a twist and shared again!

  6. Allison says

    Love the tutorial, especially the sticker stamps. Genius! Almost as good, Boo’s boots!! Where o where can I find them for my little Boo( seriously that is our little girl’s nickname, too)

  7. says

    I could not figure out how to make this type of dress! Thank you for the help. I have twin girls who love dresses for each holiday!

  8. Sydney says

    I made my daughter a Christmas dress just like this except I used a t-shirt for the top. It was so cute, everyone commented on it and loved it. I think I’ll make another this year since she outgrew that one. :)

  9. Irene says

    I’m not sure if I missed something in your tatorial but did you make the top of the dress or us it a shirt ? The one lady mentioned that’s what she did for her daughters Christmas dress …

  10. Krista says

    That is really cute! You make it sound so easy, but I know it’s definitely not! She looks so pretty in that dress with the boots and knee highs, love that look! Now I really want a daughter, boys clothes just aren’t as cute.

  11. Whitney says

    Love this! It really does look super cute! I adore how it’s totally Halloween yet not overkill!

    Question: is there a good ratio for the band to make it a bubble dress? I’ve got a niece I’d love to make something like this for, but she’s too far away to try on and alter.

  12. Chelle says

    Hi!! I have that exact serger and I love it too! It’s not the best one out there, but it sure gets the job done! ♥

    Question: Which pattern of yours do I need to buy to make this Halloween dress. I need the pattern and the how to’s on the chest and arms…:)

    Enjoy your blog!

  13. Linda L says

    This is adorable Ashley! Boo is getting so big!! I have the Sienna pattern but I might need that aline pattern too. You are so creative. Thanks for the inspiration!

  14. jessi says

    Let me know if you are interested in selling it, when Boo outgrows it!
    My girls would love this!