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Girls Tank Dress

By: Victoria for Vixen Made

If you're not sure what to do with old T-shirts, try turning them into cute dresses, perfect for the summer! This Girls Tank Dress tutorial from Victoria Lavertu will show you everything about how to sew a dress and ways to create dress patterns for sewing. This dress is surprisingly simple to make, and a great way to recycle clothes.

Girls Tank Dress


  • An existing tank top (works well with a too small tank top that is too short but still fits fine on top)
  • Fabric for the skirt portion
  • Sewing machine
  • Coordinating thread
  • Scissors and/or rotary cutter and mat
  • Iron
  • Measuring tape


  1. Measure how long you want the tank top portion of the dress to be. It should hit around where the waist is. Mark this on both ends of shirt.
  2. Cut a straight line across the shirt at your markings with scissors or a rotary cutter.
  3. Lay your fabric piece along the bottom of your top piece and measure how wide your fabric will need to be. Be sure to add extra for seam allowance.
  4. Cut your fabric, then zigzag or serge all sides to prevent fraying.
  5. Fold the bottom part of the skirt part for a hem and iron.
  6. Sew your hem, then press with an iron.
  7. Meet up your two short ends of the fabric piece and sew together for your side seam.
  8. Press your seam with an iron.Your bottom portion is done, now you can attach the two pieces. Tuck the top into the skirt piece.
  9. Start pinning together. It's easiest if you line up the hems of the skirt and top parts first.
  10. Keep pinning around. There will be excess of skirt compared to the top, remember, to add some volume to the skirt.
  11. Sew your pieces together.
  12. Iron the seam upwards.

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I have tried to make these dresses so many times but fabric keeps stretching.I could not figure out how to cut the bottom. Always came out way too much fabric and bottom always looked okay but not to my liking.This tutorial on lining up the bottom and cutting using the shirt shows me what I did wrong. Now they should look great. Anyone else have this trouble? Thanks for the tutorial.

What a great way to extend the life of clothes that have gotten just a wee bit small. I haven't sewn since high school (and I admit that was many moons ago) but have a renewed interest now that I have grandkids. Retired, I have more time to re-introduced myself to the creativity, and fun projects.

I think this is a great idea. I volunteer to make soft toys and garments for our Operation Christmas Child project and this will work out perfectly. I am a long time sewer and have so much fabric stash that this will be easy. I'm sure there won't be a problem finding outgrown T shirts from others. I had been thinking about doing this but hadn't seen any directions before until I happened on this one. Thanks!


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