shabby apple knock-off dress

Just a re-post of my knock off originally posted here.

So, without further ado…Here is my knock off dress! Patterned after this one. (couldn’t get a pic from the site, sorry)
I love the graphic qualities of the dress, and the green with the black and white would have never been something I would have done on my own! It’s a simple v-neck bodice, lined and made with muslin, with a large pleated flower sewn to the front. It has a wonderful circle skirt for the bottom and zips up the back with an invisible zipper. 
So here’s the tutorial!
Click below for more details!

You’ll need:
1/2-1 yd muslin or white fabric
1/4 yd green fabric (mine is some home dec from Joann’s)
polka dot fabric or other print (I got mine here)
button to cover
invisible zipper

First I made a pattern for the bodice by tracing around a shirt that fits my daughter-adding in seam allowances, and drawing in a v-neck for the front, and slight scoop for the back of the bodice. I then used that pattern to make my sleeve pattern-like the picture shows.
I then cut out of my muslin-
2 front pieces on the fold, with the v-neck, 4 pieces of the back-with 1/2″ added for the zipper, and 4 sleeve pieces.
I used this tutorial for my inspiration for the pleated flower!

Then I made the pleated flower for the front. I cut 2 strips, one 2″wide and one 3″ wide, both about 30″ long. I folded them in half lengthwise and ironed them for a crisp edge. Then I started making little pleats (with the 2″wide piece) in a twisting shape like so.. and tacking them down with my hand needle.

Kept going til that ran out, folded it under and tacked it down…then did the same with the larger strip-only made my pleats a little farther apart. I then layered them and tacked the layers all together securely.
Then I placed and pinned it to one of the front pieces.
 And sewed it on with my machine, hiding the stitches right under the second layer of “petals”.
Then, right sides together, I laid out the bodice pieces like so, and pinned and sewed the shoulder seams together. Then ironed the seams open…
 Then I pinned (RST) the bodice pieces together like so and sewed around the neckline.
I clipped the few curves and snipped a little bit right at the v-neck.
Then turned it right sides out, ironed well, and top stitched along the neckline, then basted the layers together at the arm holes.
Next I doubled up the sleeve layers, then basted them together along the sides and curve of the sleeves.
Then I ironed the bottom over 1/4″, then another 1/4″.
Then sewed that down. (no pic of this next step, sorry!)
Then I pinned the sleeves into the arm holes, RST. I did put a few gathers in the top to make it fit just right.
Then I sewed the sleeves in, and top stitched around the top of the sleeves.
Next I pinned the back and front RST, and sewed the sides up, then finished those seams.
For the skirt-I used Dana’s circle skirt tutorial-(I just about knocked-off everyone for this dress! lol) and for the waist measurement I measured around the bodice and used that. I also cut one of the sides open to sew up later on after the zipper. Hemmed it up per her instructions as well.
Then I gathered it to fit the bottom of the bodice, then pinned them right sides together and sewed that up-finishing the seams.
For the sash, I cut a long piece 4″ wide, folded it in half lengthwise, sewed down one long edge, turned right side out, and ironed it flat.

Then I pinned it around the waistline, matching up the back. I then inserted my invisible zipper (using my tutorial) and was done!

A cute dress for a cute girl-she looks so grown up in this dress!


  1. Super cute! Thanks for the tutorial. I’m bookmarking this for later.
    Jill Made It

  2. I can’t wait to make this except I am using holiday colors for Thanksgiving and Christmas dresses.

  3. Gosh, I want to make this dress! I’d have to do some number crunching, of course (I’m 13 years old, and almost 5’6″!), but this is adorable. What is it about little girl clothes that makes them so cute, and so… wearable? Love your blog, and love your tutorials! (:

  4. Oh so cute! I might have to make one of these for my daughter. Thanks for the tutorial!

  5. Just need to put in the zip, which of course is still at the store, but I’ll take care of that detail tomorrow. Turned out really cute, easy to follow your tutorial even though I was uber nervous about not have a ‘real’ pattern to work with. Once this grandma goes to Frankfurt she will photograph the little doll in my spin on the Knock Off dress.Thanks for sharing your ideas and talent with us!

  6. Love this! Is there a way I could pull this off without the zipper? I am fairly new to sewing and really worried about the zipper part. Any suggestions would be wonderful! Thank you for sharing this!!

  7. Marie Danneels says

    Again, a big thank you for this beautiful tutorial ! Your instructions are always so comprehensive, love it .


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