DIY Ruffle Wrap Dress

When I decided I wanted a wrap dress with ruffles, I don’t think I fully appreciated how tough it would be to start completely from scratch, build my own pattern, and teach myself how to make the dress at the same time. I had never made a wrap dress before this project. Jumping into projects with both feet seems to be my thing these days though, so in I went and the result, while definitely not perfect, is also not half bad.

To make this pattern I blended two existing bodice patterns I already had. One I liked the length of and one had sleeves that went with it. I slashed a and spread the sleeve pattern to make flutter sleeves, which was easy enough, but my bodice blending only got my so far. The rest of the dress I drafted from scratch including:

  • cross body front bodice pieces;
  • skirt with back darts;
  • waist band; and
  • ruffles

I pretty pleased with my work on the ruffles (even though I am not sure if I like them). I also did a good job on the skirt I think. I semi-based it on a quarter circle skirt but had to modify it to fit on the fabric I had. The fabric was a Value Village find from a few weeks ago so it wasn’t measured to fit this project and I was down to scraps by the end. I jumped in though… and I’m quite happy with the result!

What I learned:

  • Bust dart placement on a wrap dress is tricky (and I didn’t quite get it right)
  • Slashing and spreading looks like way too much when you are doing it but I could have spread these sleeves more to really get the flutter look I was after
  • Ruffles aren’t difficult but they may not have been the right choice for this project (they sort of make the dress look like a bathrobe I think)
  • I’m going to get a proper pattern for my next wrap dress (I’m thinking of trying this Highlands Wrap Dress from Indie Sew) so that I can learn proper dart placement and front bodice shaping. When I wrap my dress, the armholes pull forward too much and I’m pretty sure that there is a thing or two for me to learn about fitting a wrap dress!

Despite all of these things, I kind of like how this turned out and knowing that I went for it all on my own makes it that much neater.

I’ll report back when I try the Highlands Wrap Dress pattern and let you know what I learn. Thanks for stopping by!

~ Lindsay

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