Thursday, July 25, 2013

Towel Cover-up Mini How To

When I was sewing up the girls' towel cover-ups for the Roller Skate Dress FLIP, I took a few pictures so that I could write up a tutorial.  But I didn't take very many pictures so this is more like a mini how-to.  Hope it helps anyone thinking of making one!

What you'll need:
  • cap sleeve dress pattern or a tshirt to use as a guide
  • 22"zipper (for 3T)
  • double fold bias tape
  • towel - for sizes larger than 3T you may need an extra long one, or a basic size towel plus hand towel for the hood
To begin, I cut out and pieced together the size 3T front and back dress patterns of the Roller Skate Dress.  I then folded the towels I got from Walmart lengthwise and cut out the pieces on the fold.  If you have a pattern in the towel, take extra care when cutting out the pieces if you'd like to match it at the seams.  But my pattern was crazy-swirling and I didn't see how it would be possible to match the dots without having to buy a second towel. 

The remaining of the towel in the bottom of the above picture was used to make the hood.  I used the already finished towel edge for my hood edge.  The size was roughly 12" x 9".  (Somehow the hood I cut out of the second towel was 8" x 11", but it still worked.  I just had to trim some more out of the middle of the front dress piece).  The pieces cut out are all in the picture below.  I cut the front dress piece down the middle to add the zipper later. 

Step 1:  Hood
This part was super easy!  All I did was fold the hood piece in half right sides together and sew a line lengthwise that curved at the top.  I secured the seam with a zig-zag stitch to prevent fraying.

Step 2:  Hood Attachment
Then I sewed the front and back dress pieces right sides together at the shoulders (finishing the seams with a zig-zag stitch).  Place the hood and dress pieces right side together around the neckline and sew together (finish seam with zig-zag stitch).  You can see in the picture below, the hood was a little smaller than the front pattern pieces, so I had to trim them (leaving 1/2 for zipper placement). 

And this is where I ran out of pictures!  I didn't have many to begin with anyway - hopefully I can explain the rest well.

Step 3:  Zipper Placement
Sew the zipper onto the front pieces using a method you prefer.  There are tons of tutorials online - I like this one, though I don't usually go through the trouble to get it that perfect.  The zipper length I chose went the entire length of the dress pieces.  I used a regular zipper instead of a jacket like zipper, so it doesn't unzip all the way.  This turned out to be better for us, because the girls could get them on and off themselves.  If the zipper was to separate at the bottom like a jacket zipper, they'd be asking me to fix it over and over!  Here's a couple views of the finished zipper if that helps:


Step 4: Sew up the Side Seams
Place the back and front dress pieces right sides together and sew (finish seams with zig-zag stitch).

Step 5:  Attach the Bias Tape
Sandwich the bias tape around the towel at the arm holes and sew it on.  Then do the same around the hem. 

That should be it!  If anyone attempts this and it doesn't work out, let me know!