How to Make a Dress in One Hour (or less!)

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Want to make a dress in one hour (or less?)  Well I have good news for you!  I have just updated my pillowcase dress pattern to include larger sizes!  This latest pattern will fit girls sizes 2 to 16.

free dress pattern

The old pattern only went up to a size 8, which we were long past fitting into.

What’s great about a pillowcase dress is how easy and fast they are to make.  These little dresses are perfect project for those of us who have maybe lost our sewing mojo.  Nothing better than making something adorable in less than an hour.

Yes, you can totally make a pillowcase dress in less than an hour!

sew a dress in one hour

In fact, after I finished sewing my daughter’s dress, I sewed up a 2nd one (in different fabric) for our little niece.

I made the second dress in less than 50 minutes and that includes cutting out the fabric, looking up the measurements on my web page, cutting the straps twice because I was rushing and did it wrong the 1st time, having to stop to wind a bobbin, ironing and finishing the dress completely.  I even paused the process to take a few photos to document a step missing in the original tutorial.

The only time saving step was to use premade bias tape around the armholes.

Watch me make the dress in this fun little time warp video. Please excuse the no hair, no make up, house dress version of me – If I waited ’til all was perfect I would never do anything, lol.  (This is just a fun video, not a how-to video.)


My missy is asking for me to add elastic around the waist of her dress.  Stay tuned, I may do a little tutorial on how to add an elastic waist to a pillowcase dress.  (It’s easy and the older girls prefer it.)

Make a Girl's Dress in an hour or less with this free Dress Pattern. Fits girls size 2 to 16!

Free Pillowcase Dress Pattern

I’ve had this fabric in my stash for years.  I was planning to make placemats with it, but since it was one of my few cuts of fabric that was 2 yards, I went ahead and used it for her dress.

Sure wish I had a bit more to make something for myself.  It’s just so pretty.  (The fabric is called So St. Croix by Jennifer Paganelli from Free Spirit Fabrics.  Almost impossible to find now.)

Don’t forget to grab the latest version of the pattern here and sew your missy a pretty dress for Mother’s Day!

I included the next photo, just to prove they are never too old or dressed too pretty to play in the dirt, lol.

Also, we left the back door open and both kitties decided to join us!

Make a Girl's Dress in an hour or less with this free Dress Pattern. Fits girls size 2 to 16!

If you end up making one of these, be sure to come back and share an image to my facebook page or tag me on instagram using #scatteredmompatterns.

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  1. I’m making a dress for my grand niece. She wears an 18 child and she’s only 9. That’s a very hard size to find. Would the adult version Sm work if I tweaked it?

    1. Jamie Sanders says:

      The adult version would definitely work. However, this patter could too. You easily size this pattern up. Here is a nice to torial on how to increase a pattern size.

  2. Kristine Unger says:

    I’ve made 122 of these darling dresses. Most of them have been sent overseas, about half of them to Guatemala. When I watched your video, I noticed your serger. I serge the arm holes without the blade and then just turn it under. This saves a lot of time and I think it looks just as will finished as the seam tape. I’d send a few pictures, but I don’t see a way to download them.

    1. Jamie Sanders says:

      I love the tip! Sergers are such a time saver!

  3. Debbie Rohleder says:

    Hi, I was just wondering for the print out of the pattern, do you print it with your home printer with regular paper or do you need to take it to an office store with larger paper. If you print it at home how do you tape it all together. Never did this before. My granddaughter who is 11 would like to learn to sew so I thought this dress would be great. Also want to make one to match for her American Girl Doll.

    Thank you

    1. Jamie Sanders says:

      Yes, just print on regular paper, cut out around the grey boxes and tape together. Then cut out the pattern.

  4. Goldilocks says:

    Is the seam allowance included?

  5. I was wondering if there is any way to download your patterns without using the chrome converter . I sew with my Sew For Kids group to make dresses for Africa at my Woman’s club and also for the Native American girls on the Indian Reservation thru my SFK group . I have a lot inexperienced women to work with and is an easy pattern . I used to download with adobe reader. My husband does not want me to use the converter as he worries would cause problems with the computer as they state that it possibly can. I have been following you for many years and love your patterns and watching your kids grow up. Cute kids. Just asking about other possibilities Have a few in the smaller sizes that can use but wanted some larger sizes. Thanks in advance.

    1. Jamie Sanders says:

      I am not sure what converter you are using. I don’t recommend any pdf reader other than the free adobe reader. (In fact, in many of my posts (when I remember to mention it) I say DO NOT use the chrome pdf reader as it causes the patterns to potentially print too small.) Adobe reader is the only one that I can guarantee the patterns print at the appropriate size.

  6. Karla Jarvis says:

    I already get your emails. this is the first time I tried to get a pattern. I put it in the cart, placed the pillow dress order and received nothin. can u suggest how to get the pattern

    1. Did you “check out” If you did, they you would have been directed to a thank you/ download page. also, if you entered your email correctly, you should have gotten and email with the link. I searched my customer list for your name and did not find your name as someone who checked out, but I could have searched wrong of course. Her is the link to my frequently asked questions page and there are some images there for you to refer to.

  7. Live in S FL…very, very hot in summer months. Looking for simple pattern for floor/mini dress for lounge wear…not “outside” wear. Love ur posts but no little girls in my life. 🙁

    1. I live in loungewear, lol. I actually have a few I would love to do and share on the blog. It’s just a matter of finding the time. Of course, having to be my own model holds me back a little bit as a hate the way I look in photos!