Today is the day! This free girls sewing pattern is now available for everyone to sew. I call it the Skirted Sweatshirt pattern and it is for sizes 18 months to 8. It is meant to be slightly oversized making it extra comfy. In fact, I knew it was good when my oldest put it on and said so, haha, and she can be hard to please now.
Another great thing about this pattern is that you can use a larger sweatshirt you have sitting in your closet, or one you thrifted, instead of buying sweatshirt fabric. In fact, the tops on my littlest girl (miss E) and her friend (in the pink) were made using sweatshirts that have been sitting in my closet for years without being used. I used some sweatshirt fabric on miss J’s that I happened to come across in a thrift store. That fabric is what actually inspired this pattern as I wanted to figure out a way to use it.
- Large sweatshirt (see tips further down if doing this) or 1 yd of sweatshirt fabric
- 3/4 yd of Fabric for skirt part (the more movement the fabric has the better! Try not to use stiff fabrics for this as it won’t lay nicely.) *if fabric pattern is horizontal to the fabric width, then get 1 yard*
- Free pattern (download here)
- Sewing machine, coordinating thread, etc.
*Notes: Use 1/4″ seams for sewing. Back stitch at the end of sewing. Remember, this is a slightly oversized pattern, so if your child is more on the smaller side of the pattern it might be larger on them. In the pictures the oldest girl is wearing a 7/8 and wears a 7 or 8 in store clothes. The girl in the pink is in the 5/6 (and I accidentally stretched the neck out…oops!) and fits perfectly in a size 5 normally (also note I did not hem up the bottom of the skirt since it was knit fabric, making that part longer). The littlest, in the lamb hat, is in the 3/4 and wears a 4 or 5 normally.
Sizing Chart Chest Measurement
18 mo/2 19″-20″
Let me begin with a printing tip. PDF patterns print most accurately when opened in Adobe reader. Sometimes the “preview” of a pdf pattern doesn’t print it out quite right. Also make sure to choose “actual size” in the printing options.
Cut out all the pattern pieces and tape them together. From here you can trace the desired size you need on something like wax paper so you won’t have to keep reprinting the pattern. Or you can also just cut out the size you need. Page four is a list of the pieces of fabric you will need to cut for the sweatshirt bottom band and the skirt ruffle.
Take note of the direction of stretch on each pattern piece when cutting out fabric. I also suggest cutting the bottom band with the direction of stretch going horizontally as well. It doesn’t matter for the skirt fabric since it will be gathered.
Match the front and back pieces at the shoulders, right sides facing, and pin. Sew together at each shoulder. I finished the edges of my shirts with a serger, but it isn’t necessary. You could also go over the edges with a zig zag stitch if you like.
Take one sleeve and pin it into one armhole, right sides facing. I always find it easiest to pin the middle of the top of the sleeve to the middle of the shoulder. Then attach the sides around the curves.
I want to share a few tips real quick if you are using an already made sweatshirt. In the picture above you can see that I reused the bottom band so it is a little smaller than what the pattern size is. That’s okay. Just make sure the width is the same. Now, I was tempted to sew on the bottom band before sewing the sides, but it doesn’t work because then you sew the side seams over that band seam and it makes it hard to get the fabric skirt sewn on.
You can also just cut off the sleeve of an existing sweatshirt and not have to sew up the sides. If you do this, have the bottom of the sleeve pattern be at the bottom of the sleeve, the fold on the outer fold of sleeve, and cut the top curve. You will just have to attach the sleeve after you sew up the rest of the shirt. Just sew up the sides and then pin the sleeve in place, right sides facing. Match up the bottom seams and the tops to sew in place..
To make the ruffle, sew two separate rows, with a very large stitch (I make it as big as my machine lets me) at the top of the skirt making sure to leave long tails at the beginning and ending of each roe. Make sure to not overlap stitches at all for this.
Now this part is a little different. You are going to sew the skirt ruffle onto the seam edge of the bottom band/sweatshirt. Really look at the pictures to make sure it makes sense In the above pictures, you see the wrong side of the fabric skirt is facing up. The sweatshirt is inside out. The right side of the top of the fabric skirt will be pinned to the seam allowance. See below pictures for a better picture of this.
To finish the neck you simply turn it in about 1/4″ and sew in place. I finished the raw edge with my serger before doing this for a more finished look, but it isn’t necessary. I also sewed two rows around the neck to keep it down better.
It’s really a quick sew and you can customize it in a lot of ways. You can make the sleeves shorter, add more layers to the bottom skirt, and whatever else you can come up with. I hope you enjoy this free girls sewing pattern! Please be sure to share your creation that you make using this pattern either here (by sharing a link to a blog post in the comments), on the Happy Together facebook page, or using #happytogetherbyjess on social media.
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