How to sew a pinafore dress with detachable bib

Okay, who doesn’t love a 2-in-1? If you love versatile garments and making your wardrobe work FOR YOU, this is a sewing project you have to try. Whether you are into cottagecore or a classic vintage style, a pinafore dress is an evergreen style that is great adventures and daydreaming. Today, I am showing you how to sew a pinafore dress like this one by adding a detachable bib to a skirt. I made my pinafore dress/detachable bib using the same dark pine green fabric that I used to make my half circle skirt from a couple of weeks back. If you would like to make your pinafore dress in the same style as mine, then check out my step-by-step tutorial on how to draft and sew a half circle skirt. Of course, you can also make your pinafore dress by making your personal tried-and-tested skirt pattern, and then make the detachable bib using remnant yardage from the skirt project. However, for the pinafore dress silhouette to be created, you MUST use a skirt that has a close-fitted waistband that sits on your natural waist. Alternatively, you can also find a maxi skirt in a thrift store, alter the length into a shorter version and use the remnant fabric to make the detachable bib! This sewing project requires no pattern and can be made into your own desired style. Let’s get to sewing! Taking measurements Start by taking measurements of your body to figure out the dimensions of the pattern pieces. There will be 2 pattern pieces: (1) bib, (2) strap The bib Height of the bib Tie a 1/4″ wide elastic and place it right where you want the top edge of your bib to be. I placed mine right above the start of my breasts, a few inches below my armpits. Measure the distance between the elastic and the bottom of the waistband Length of the bib Place a pin on the front waistband of the skirt, 2.5″ from the side seams Measure the distance between the pins The strap Length of the strap Place a pin on the back waistband of the skirt, 2.5″ from the side seams Place the start of the measuring on the elastic, then place it over your shoulders either straight down the back or crossed, mimicking your desired placement of the straps Measure the length from the elastic to the bottom of the waistband on the back of the skirt (Note: Get a friend to help if this part is tricky! Make sure you don’t have your back hunched while trying to reach the back because this results in inaccurate measurement.) Summary Here’s an illustration of the required dimensions of the bib and strap pattern pieces. For reference, my measurements are as follows: desired width of straps = 1.25″length of straps (crossed) = 24.5″height of bib = 8.5″length of bib = 7.5 How to sew a pinafore dress with detachable bib Like I said, sewing this bib is quick and easy! Before sewing, you need to cut the fabric according to the measurements of your bib and strap dimensions. You can choose to make your own paper pattern first, or simply draw on the fabric itself and cut accordingly. I find the latter more straightforward for a simple pattern like this one. Abbreviations: RS = right side(s)WS = wrong side(s) Cutting the pattern Cut 4 pieces for the strap and 2 pieces for the bib. Sewing the straps Place 2 strap pieces WS together, then sew them together, leaving 1 short edge open to turn the strap inside out Repeat this for the other 2 strap pieces Trim the corners of the end of the strap that is sewn Using a turning tool or in my case, a finger, turn the straps inside out. Make sure that the corners are sharp and neat! Press the straps flat and topstitch approximately 1/8″ – 1/4″ from the edges Attaching the straps to the bib Start with the right side of the bib piece facing up Using pin, make a temporary mark 3/8″ from the sides of the bib Align the raw edge of the straps on the top edge of the bib and next to the pins. Pin them in place. Fold and pin the straps so they won’t be in the way of sewing for the next step Place the other bib piece on top so that both bib pieces are RS together Sew along the edge, leaving a 2″ opening to turn the bib inside out. (Optional: Slipstitch the opening close) Press the bib flat and topstitch along the bib (Note: Only the raw edge of the strap will be sewn into the bib. When sewing, make sure the sides of the straps don’t get sewn with the sides of the bib by mistake!) Adding the snap buttons Start by sewing the flat half of the snap buttons on the bib Sew basting stitches along the bottom of the bib to mark the width of the waistband of your skirt. The waistband of my skirt is 1″, so the basting stitches are 1″ from the bottom edge of the bib. Sew the 1st and 4th snap button approximately 1/8″ from the sides of the bib and the basted line Sew the 2nd and the 3rd snap button somewhere in between so that the distance between each snap button are about the same With the wrong side of the skirt facing your, place a pin on the front waistband of the skirt, 2.5″ from the side seams Align the sides of the bib next to the pins and the bottom of the bib on the bottom waistband of the skirt Mark the positions of the snap button on the wrong side of the waistband Sew the protruding half of the snap buttons on the waistband in the corresponding positions (Note: When sewing the snap buttons onto the skirt waistband, sew only through the layer of fabric on the WS of the waistband. We don’t want the stitches to show on the right side of the skirt!) Sewing the buttons Sew the 5/8″ buttons on the wrong side of the back waistband of the skirt, 2″ from the side seams Making the buttonholes Put your skirt and bib on inside out, and place your straps over your shoulders. The straps should reach the bottom of the waistband on the back of the skirt. Mark out the button placement on the skirt with a dot. Extend this dot to draw the buttonhole line. The original dot should be the bottom of the buttonhole line, closer to the end of the strap. Make your buttonholes And that’s all the steps to sewing your detachable bib to make a pinafore dress! Want more design ideas for sewing your own pinafore dress? Check out the last bit of my Youtube video where I discuss how to sew a pinafore dress in different styles and how to modify the design for different bodies! Is this something you’d be wanting to make for the holiday season?

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How to sew a pinafore dress with detachable bib