How to Make a Chopsticks A-Line Dress for Girls
The perfect dress for your little fashionista—and easy-breezy as a summer day. Combining the simplicity of flat construction with a touch of fancy in fabric selection, this A-line dress is so super-simple to sew it will become your go-to pattern for the season.
- Chopsticks Dress Pattern (see link below)
- 3/4 to 1-1/2 yards outer shell fabric: chiffon, lace, voile, or other lightweight apparel fabric
- 3/4 to 1-1/2 yards of lining fabric: lightweight to medium-weight woven cotton
- 4″ of 1/8″-wide elastic
- One button
- Approximately 3 yards of ribbon (optional)
- Scissors or rotary cutter and mat
- Coordinating thread
- Standard presser foot (BERNINA Reverse Pattern Foot #1)
Step 1) Create your pattern pieces.
Download the free Chopsticks Dress pattern:Chopsticks_Dress_pattern_pieces_and_size_chart_121314.pdf
Print the pattern at full-size, using the 2″ test square to ensure proper printing.
- Print all pages on standard letter-size paper. If you live outside Canada or the US, print the pages to your standard paper size.
- Make sure that “Auto Rotate and Center” is checked and that “Scaling” is NOT checked. If you have a newer version of Adobe Reader, your options might be “Fit to Size” or “Actual Size.” If that is the case, make sure you choose “Actual Size.”
- To make sure you’re printing the right size pattern, measure the 2″ by 2″ inch square. Do your troubleshooting here so you don’t print out the wrong size pages.
To connect the pages, trim each one to the gray border (do not cut the gray border off), and match the letters in the corners of the pages.
Tape the pages together, using the Pattern Image Map as your guide.
Once the whole pattern is printed and taped, cut along your selected size line. (See size chart.) Note that the gray rectangles are part of the Exterior Front and Back; do not include them in the Lining Front and Back.
Note: ½″ seam allowances are included.
Step 2) Gather the Exterior Front and Back necklines.
Transfer the marks from the pattern pieces to your fabric.
Sew a gathering stitch between the two ruffle marks on your Exterior Front dress fabric piece. Pull the bobbin thread to gather. Repeat for the Back Dress Pattern pieces, sewing a gathering stitch between the ruffles mark on the Exterior Back neckline.
Step 3) Construct the outer dress and lining.
Pin the Exterior Front and Exterior Back pieces right sides together at the shoulders; stitch using a 1/2″-wide seam allowance.
Repeat for the Lining Front and Back pieces.
Place the Exterior and Lining dresses right sides together, matching necklines and armsyces; pin.
Stitch using a 1/2″-wide seam allowance. Clip the curved seams.
Turn dress right side out and press.
Fold the dress with the Exterior Front to the Exterior Backs.
Flip up the lining, so that the outer dress pieces are right sides together, and the lining pieces are right sides together, with the seams matching at the armscye; pin.
Stitch using a 1/2″-wide seam allowance.
Finish the seam edges as desired (overlocker/serger, sewing machine overlock or zigzag stitch, or pinking shears).
Repeat for the other side of the dress.
Press. Your dress is coming along nicely now!
Step 4) Sew the center back seam and button closure.
Flip over the dress so that the back is facing up. Take one side of your back dress and flip the back center seam upwards so that the lining and exterior of the dress are right sides together ABOVE the neckline. Pin.
Sew from the neckline down to the back mark dot indicated on the pattern, using a ¼″-wide seam allowance.
Repeat for the other side, flipping up the fabric and pinning the lining and exterior of the dress together, but DO NOT SEW yet.
Take your 1/8″-wide elastic and create a loop with it. Insert the loop 1″” down from the neckline between the exterior and lining, with the ends of the elastic sticking out; pin. Sew from the neckline down to the back mark dot, using a 1/4″-wide seam allowance. Stitch back and forth over the elastic a few times to make it extra secure. Snip off the excess elastic ends.
Flip both sides of the back center down and press.
Turn the dress wrong side out. Place the exterior dress back center seams (the bottom unsewn parts) right sides together. Pin all the way up to the ‘back mark’ on the exterior fabric only. Flip up the lining so that it too is right sides together, and continue pinning until you get to the lining hem.
Sew, and finish seam edge as desired.
Turn dress right side out and press.
Step 5) Add the finishing touches.
Sew the button to the dress opposite the elastic loop.
Hem the bottom of the lining by turning under ¼″ towards the wrong side and pressing. Then turning under again ¼″, pressing, and sewing.
Repeat for the outer dress.
Tip: If using chiffon or lace for the outer dress, a rolled hem foot such as BERNINA Rolled Hem Foot #62, could be used for the hem. Or it could be finished with an overlocker/serger rolled edge.
Add a ribbon belt if desired. I used about 3 yards of ribbon and wrapped it around the dress twice.