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DIY Off the Shoulder Fitted Dress (Perfect for a wedding!)

DIY Fashion Aug 21, 2017

DIY Off The Shoulder Fitted Dress

The fun, flippy dress that you’ve always wanted… Is totally something you can make yourself.

Never ones to tire of the off the shoulder style, this time we decided to experiment with a fitted waist. Recently a few of you asked us to create a dress that could be worn to a wedding, or a more fancy event – and I think this dress totally cuts the mustard, particularly if you make it in a slightly luxe fabric like a brocade or heavy silk. Here I’ve gone with a casual beach look, but it would be perfect dressed up with heels and rattan clutch. Throw on a hat and you’re races ready too!

DIY Off The Shoulder Fitted Dress

Pattern For The Dress

Below is the pattern for the dress. Use a bodice pattern drafted from scratch or copied from a t-shirt, a technique we use a lot to create well fitting top. For this one you might want to make sure the bodice is a size larger than you are, so it can be pull over your head.

Cut the pattern halfway through the armhole, you will only need the lower part. The width of the shoulder ruffle and skirt pieces are twice that of your waist measurement. But you can also increase the width if you’d like more gathers. Finally, the skirt length can be made as long as you like – we went with mid thighs but this would also be lovely knee length or even midi length!

How to



The first step is to cut your fabric. You will end up with front and back bodice and skirt pieces, and a long strip for the ruffle, after cutting. Sew the side seams of the bodice and skirt together.


The edges of the armhole will need to be tidied up. First, cut notches into the edges (seam allowance), this will make the curve much smoother and easier to fold.





Pin and sew a straight stitch. For this you could also do a bias-cut binding out of the same fabric, or use bias tape to finish the raw edges.



Now to attached the ruffle to the top of the neckline. Flip your bodice onto the right side, and your ruffle onto the wrong side. Pin together so that the bodice and ruffles' wrong sides are facing each other. Pin and sew the ruffle to the top edge.


Flip the ruffle out again, you should have a clean seam on the top edge of the bodice.
We also did a rolled hem on the bottom edge of the ruffle for a neat finish.



Using the seam allowance, sew a tunnel for your elastic to go through. The length of the elastic can be found by looping it around your shoulders, and tightening the elastic until it's at a comfortable tightness.






Don't close up the tunnel when sewing it. Leave an 2cm or so open, for threading in the elastic.


Poke a small hole through one end of the elastic and insert a bobby pin, it will act as a guide for threading the elastic. Continue threading the elastic through the tunnel, then sew the ends together, before sewing the tunnel closed.






Even out the gathers, and you'll have a nicely gathered top edge.


The final step is to attach the skirt to the bodice. Before you do this, create an elasticated gathered skirt using the above technique, then flight right side out and sew to the bodice.
Lastly, finish the hem of the skirt, and you're done!


If you’re loving everything about the ease of throwing on a dress, you should definitely check out this DIY Off The Shoulder Arm Tie Dress and DIY Cross Back Dress


Enjoyed this DIY? Pin it on Pinterest!

Tags DIY Dresses Instructionals sewing Skirts Summer Tutorials

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