Overalls are back! When I was six years old, I had a pair of pink gingham overalls that I wore once a week for two years. I was pretty in love with them. Sadly, I grew out of them and never got another pair, since they “stopped being cool.” Good news is that overalls are trendy again, and today we’re showing you how to DIY your very own overall dress.
If you’re getting a little intimidated, don’t worry — I was too at first. But it actually wasn’t that hard. It took me a couple of hours, and by the end, I was doing a little jig in my new dress! I do recommend a little sewing experience before taking this on, so if you want to get a quick sewing course, take our Sewing 101 class. Let’s get started!
Materials and Tools:
First, draft your pattern. Measure the width of the bib, from the top of the bib to the start of the skirt, from the top of the bib to the bottom of the skirt, and the width of your hips. Above is a diagram of everything you need to measure. You want to be generous with your measurements, because it’s better to overestimate than underestimate when measuring fabric. Below are my measurements.
Fold your fabric in half. Since the fabric is in half, you’ll want to divide your bib width and hip length by half when measuring your measurements on the fabric. Measure out your bib width divided by two. (For example, if your bib width is eight inches, you would measure four inches.) Then measure the full length of your bib to make a rectangle. Leave a little gap after the bib rectangle, and then measure out your hip width divided by two, and measure the full length of the skirt. See my diagram below for reference.
Draw a curved line from the middle of the bib to the top right corner of the skirt rectangle. This is the shape you want to cut out. Cut out the shape, but leave at least half an inch around the outline for easier sewing.
Place the shape on top of another folded piece of fabric, folded sides together. Trace the shape on the fabric. Measure the difference of your butt measurement to the width of the skirt part. For example, my butt measurement is 20 inches, so divided by two is 10 inches. 10 minus 9 ½ (my hip width divided by two) is ½ inches. See my diagram for reference. Cut the second shape out, leaving at least half an inch around the outline.
Your shapes should look something like this.
Unfold both the front and back pieces. Lightly draw the shape outlines on the other halves of the pieces for easier hemming when sewing.
Hem the bib edges of both pieces.
Place the front shape on top of the back shape, right sides facing in. Pin together the left skirt side and sew. With the right sides together, pin together the other side of the skirts and sew.
Hem the bottom of the dress.
This is what your dress should look like!
Time to make the straps! Cut strips of fabric that are a little larger than the width of your buckle. My buckle is 1 ¼ inches, so my straps are 2 ¾ inches wide and 21 inches long. Hem the edges of the straps. Pin the short ends to the top corners of the back side of the dress. Sew down.
On the front of your dress, install your overall buttons to the top corners of the bib. Your buckles should have directions on the packaging on how to fasten to fabric. Loop the straps through the buckle. At this point, try on your dress to see if you want to make alterations. I ended up taking mine in a little.
Sew a pocket by cutting out three pocket shapes and hemming the top edge. My side pockets are six inches wide and seven inches long.
Fold the other edges down 1/4 inch and pin to the front of the dress. Pin one in the middle of the bib and the other ones at the sides and sew down.
Woo! You’re finished!
Disco ball tumblers and corduroy dresses foreva.
Oh look, my twin showed up!
We’re really feeling our looks.
DIY Production and Styling: Irene Lee
Photography: Chris Andre
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