Hey there! I am beyond blessed to be the wife of Mark Andrew and the stay-at-home-mommy of Quinn and Morgan! I love to decorate, create things, and generally make life more beautiful! Come join me, and let's see what we can make today!

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Red, white, and blue Bustle Dress

I am not a seamstress.  Until two days ago I had never even attempted to make something that one would actually consider wearing!  That being said, I DID make a dress for my daughter on Monday, and I am quite pleased with the result.  Here is  view of the back. What do you think?

I originally spotted this dress on Pinterest, from Cami over at Tidbits.  Cami is clearly a very talented seamstress, and she has a great tutorial on how she made her daughter's bustle dress.  I highly recommend checking out her instructions!

The dress I created was made from one of Mo's old dresses, two of my old T-shirts, one shirt that was used on a dress form for a craft show for my tutus, and a scrap of one of my hubs T-shirts that was doomed for the rag pile.  Everything was already in the GoodWill pile, so this dress cost me nothing but time.  And since Monday was rainy all day, it was a great project to occupy the time!


The first thing I did was cut the top of the dress off, just leaving the skirt, and cut the bottom of the T-shirt off. (***This is not really a tutorial since 1) I didn't really know what I was doing and, 2) I don't have great pics of all the steps because I didn't really know what I was doing! Feel free to just look at the pics and stop reading now!***)

I set those pieces aside and started cutting strips, about 4" wide, of my red and white T-shirts.  I cut the seam on one side so that I had a nice, long piece.  Then I made a stitch across the top of each piece, and pulled the bobbin thread to ruffle the strip.  This step took awhile.  If you have a machine that will ruffle your fabric for you, I highly recommend using it! ;) Once I had enough strips cut and ruffled, I started sewing them onto the scrap of fabric that I cut slightly larger than the back of the skirt.  (Sorry if this makes no sense!)

I started sewing at the top.  When I completed a row, I just flipped up the previous layer(s) and sewed the next row on.

When all of the ruffles were on I ended up with the piece that would become my bustle.

This next step was the hardest part for me.  I practically failed geometry, and even with my tools, I had a very hard time figuring out what angle to cut my skirt at.  In the end, it wasn't as hard as I made it out to be, but I was so nervous about ruining the skirt that I was arfaid to make the wrong cut.  The skirt had an elastic waist that I wanted to keep.  Anyhow, I ended up just measuring a few inches in from each side at the bottom, finding the middle at the top where I wanted the cut to end, and cutting a line between the points. 

I don't have pictures of the next parts, but I will very briefly explain what I did, although I don't think anyone will be trying my method! :) I flipped my skirt inside out and pinned the bustle where it needed to go.  I then sewed a seam across the top and down the sides.  The bustle was on.  Next, I sewed the shirt part onto the skirt.  It was my first time sewing "in the round", but I just went nice and slow, and the shirt was attached.  I had a dress, but it looked a bit unfinished, so I cut some more pieces of the red T-shirt and made a sort of waistband and bow.  Here is the final product.

I really cannot believe I made that!  So, if I can do it, I KNOW anyone can do it!  Give it try and let me know what you created!  I am going to link this up to some of my favorite linky parties! Check 'em out!

******UPDATE:  I cannot believe I was the number one project over at CSI this week!  Crazy!  Glad I stepped out of my comfort zone and tried something new!  Thanks for hosting, ladies!****

 Visit thecsiproject.com

Visit thecsiproject.com 

Enjoy the Son!

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Reader Comments (61)

I saw this on Pinterest, it is adorable!

June 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterRachel

This is the by far the CUTEST 4th of July dress I have seen!!!! I am going to have to make one for my little girl!!! I couldn't believe it when you said you are not a seamstress. You had me fooled!!!!

June 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterNancy's Couture

Cutest dress ever! You have a great eye for putting fabrics together!

June 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAndrea@addicted2tutes

LOVE! Just featured this on our blog! http://holidaysnobs.blogspot.com/2011/06/ahh-patriotic-on-pinterest.html

June 27, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterHoliday Snob

Super cute! I love the ruffles!
(but, haha- the first pic of the back of the dress looks like the stool legs are her legs! lol Her little legs are too short for her feet to show. How funny and cute!)

June 27, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterNicole Eades

Thank you EVERYONE for all of the lovely comments! I am working on replying to all of you personally, but I am having trouble finding some of your e-mails! If you don't get a personal note from me, please accept this note of sincerest thanks! I truly appreciate your very kind words! Thank you!

June 27, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterHolly

What a cutie pa-tootie in that dress. What a talented mommy you are, Holly...by the way, we should get together sometime!

June 27, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSherri

How adorable is this?! My son wouldn't like it too much, but cute for my kid sis! And for the francophiles, it could be recycled on Bastille Day!

June 27, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKat

Super cute! And, for this not being a "tutorial," it sure made sense to me! I' no seamstress either, so your lingo was perfect! :) Thanks for sharing, and nice job!

June 27, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAubrey

It's absolutely the cutest thing EVER!

June 27, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMichelle

That is adorable! You did an awesome job.

June 27, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJeannette

I just found your blog and am your newest follower. This project is fabulous! Thanks for leaving me totally inspired.

June 27, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterBrandy .

I really love this! You did such a lovely job! I think that I'm going to have to try this. Thanks for the inspiration!

June 28, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterTwins Squared

You did a great job! If my little girl wasn't 20 I would make her one.

June 29, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterHearts & Home

I LOVE this! I'll be featuring it on my blog today.

June 29, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterCrystal

You will be featured tomorrow during my Linky Party! Thank you so much for taking the time to link up with the frog last week! It truly was an honor having you!!

June 29, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJenni

i super love it. thanks for sharing. fabulous

June 29, 2011 | Unregistered Commentermekei

This is very cute and I applaud you for going for it and making this.
My only question is on the bustle part. It doesn't look like you put a hem on the ruffles after you cut them from the t-shirts. Was there any fraying on that part after you washed it?

June 30, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterStephanie

This is amazing and I am definitely making this for my daughter to wear when my husband come home from his deployment.
Does anyone know where I can find some blue polka dot knit fabric for this project? Unfortunately I don't have anything similar to repurpose.

July 2, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshleigh

Lovely! Makes me wish my little girl was not quite so big... I'd whip one up for her tonight!
I didn't read all the comments, so I'm not sure if anyone shared this trick already, but you don't need a fancy-pants machine to ruffle. Just set your tension to the highest letting and your stitch length to the highest. Then just sew. The fabric will automatically ruffle. Hurray!

July 2, 2011 | Unregistered Commentersimply heidi

Ugh - when will I ever learn to proofread?
Just set your tension to the highest setting and your stitch length to the longest.

July 2, 2011 | Unregistered Commentersimply heidi

I did it! I used your tutorial and made adorable dresses for my girls. People were shouting "I love your dress!" out of cars as we walked around DC on the 4th, and the girls absolutely loved the dresses. Comfortable knit and a ruffle bustle that's fun to swish and wiggle--what could be better? Here's the picture of my version:

A pretty dress like this will surely be enjoyed by any kid. It's cute and adorable.

July 31, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterkids shoes

I love the ribbon bustle dress and the penelope double ruffle skirt patterns. I just adore the the little girl dresses, but since I don't have a little girl I would like the headband and Corienne flower pattern!

August 30, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterParty Bags

This is just too cute for words! I wish my daughter wasn't too old to wear something like this! :)

September 27, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterNickoliolia

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