Thursday, May 28, 2020

Back to Sewing + FREE Serena Baby Dress Pattern!

Annnnddddd....I'm back!  It feels like an eternity since I've had a tutorial to share, but finally the "no free time" clouds have parted a bit around here and I'm actually sewing again (thanks to a few random hours when both baby & toddler have napped at the same time).  Coordinated naps have been VERY unusual until now, so here's hoping that normalizes soon!

Speaking of normalizing, that's the other reason sewing is happening here: my kids are literally running out of clothes thanks to the "new normal" aka lockdown crisis.  We went from wet & cloudy 50s for ages to full sun & 90 days ago.  Months of actual stores being closed, online shops being out of stock/taking nearly that long to ship orders + reduced income has made buying new clothes for 5 growing kids nearly impossible.  You can't keep shoehorning a 2yr into last summer's clothes (believe me, I've been trying).    

Thanks to our witless governor, my new baby will probably be a teen before we're allowed to go out as a family of 7, mask-free, to a mall or store to shop without an appointment.   Therefore, I'm combing my fabric stash and pattern folders to try to keep my kids clothed...although they may be shoeless soon.  Sigh...ok rant over.  

So first up, in what I hope are a number of projects & ideas to share, is my 
Serena Baby Dress Pattern:

This fully lined/reversible dress is an easy sew and super versatile.  I'm providing sizes for 0-6 and 6-18 months as dresses, 
but the larger size could also be worn as a tunic top for up to 2T.

It's ideal for summer as a sleeveless dress or pair it with a short or long sleeved onesie for the rest of the year.

Sew Can Do Reversible Serena Baby Dress PDF Pattern image 2

It works great with woven cotton, as well as corduroy, minky or lycra knit.  The dress also uses very little fabric, so it's an inexpensive project too.  Heaven knows we could all use some $ savings right now.

I first made this dress for my older daughter when she was a baby and I've just started making some for my new little one. I originally offered it for sale in my Etsy shop with very detailed directions, but now I'm offering a more streamlined version right here for FREE!

For my latest version I paired up two pretty fabrics from my shop,

so it would be cute and sunny, inside and out:

Now let's get to the dressmaking!!

- (2) 1/2yd cuts of cotton fabric 
- (2) snap sets (or 2 buttons)
- 1 yd double fold bias tape
- Scraps of interfacing (or additional fabric)

Download My FREE Serena Dress PDF Pattern

Set printer to actual size (100%), then print, cut out and tape pieces together per the instructions.



After pre-washing the fabrics, press then open and refold as shown to lay each pattern piece along a fold of the fabric.  Cut from lining and outer fabric.  Mark snap placement on front & back pieces of each.

Open up the pieces and press flat.

With right sides facing, pair up the fronts and backs of both fabrics and sew down the sides with a 3/8 inch seam allowance.

Turn the lining dress right side out and slip inside the outer, lining up the straps and side seams and pin all along the top.  Then stitch along the top, from under the arms, around the straps and all the way around using a 1/4 inch seam allowance.  

Trim down seam allowance and clip around curves (I use pinking shears to make this a single easy step).  Add interfacing or additional fabric scraps to each strap area to reinforce it for the snaps/buttons.  Turn right side out & press.

With the lining & outer dress smoothly matched up at bottom, encase the raw edge in the bias tape.

Stitch into place close to open edge.  

When reaching the end, cut bias tape an inch longer to overlap, then fold the raw edge under and stitch over the starting point to finish.  Set snaps or add buttons (on the front) and buttonholes (on the back) at the marking points. 

If you don't have bias tape, you could always fold the raw edges inward 1/4 inch, press and then topstitch the layers together, but the contrast of of tape adds a nice detail and makes it very fast to sew:

It takes less than an hour to make, so go ahead and make lots of sweet dresses!

My little sweetie loves wearing hers:)


  1. Thank you for this - I think I will be sewing some of these as I have a new granddaughter and grand niece who have been born since the start of the year.

  2. Fantastic pattern and instructions. Just made my first Serena! Thank you so much for this!


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