This racerback A-line dress is called NINA and is the second project in a small line that I'm sharing with you. My goal is to show you how to make beautiful garments with simple material all the way from the print to the finished product.
Why is it called NINA? This is a curious name, but in fact, you can find someone named NINA in more than 122 countries across the world. The same goes for the shape of this dress. A racerback A-line dress can be found in just about every designer's portfolio.
Why is that? Made with bias tape, it is perfect for woven fabrics (like the very lightweight linen that I chose). Cut on a straight grain-line it can be sewn on a knit fabric. Cut on a jacquard knit it will make a perfect dress for midseason wear in the spring or autumn. And, made on heavy jacquard knit or wool, it will make an excellent dress for the wintertime.
This dress has two pockets in the front to carry your phone. A soft V-neck to elongated your neckline. An A-line shape to give you freedom of movement. It ends above the knee so it's suitable for a pair of boots, sneakers, or sandals. Additionally, you can choose to make it slightly shorter in the front than the back so you can use it as a top with your favorite pair of leggings.
- 2 1/2 yards of lightweight linen or silk
- 2 1/2 yards of bias tape 3/8″ wide
- Thread to match
- Sewing Machine
- Stitch in the ditch presser foot. I am using Foot #5 on my Bernina 350
Sewing Level: Advanced Beginner
Technically speaking anyone could make this pattern, however, you need to know how to cut fabric on a bias and sew bias tape around a neckline. You must know how to fold a box pleat. I will add the tutorial in the video but I am not adding it here simply because I forgot to take a picture when I did it. Uppsss…
I suggest you read the following articles before you decided to purchase fabric for this project. Read all the instructions and if you do not understand them do not try this project alone. To help you further your knowledge read the following articles:
Fabric Suggestions From Fabric.com
How To Download Your PDF Pattern
We're going to continue to use the new PayHip Webstore to distribute our patterns. As most readers know, Craftsy (Bluprint now) is closing and they have stopped designers like us from publishing new patterns on their site, so we've had to move to another service.
Our patterns are still free, but now you now have the option of making a small contribution if you like our work! We'd really appreciate it and it will help is keep going with new and fun designs like this. Even a dollar or two really goes a long way. Maybe you don't know it takes an average of 26 hours of work to make a post and that does not include a video.
Thanks so much in advance for helping us out. You can use any credit card and you don't need to have a PayPal account, although you can certainly use one if you have one.
The instructions are free on this site and will be for as long as we can remain online. So I thank you for your support over on KoFi, your kind donations mean the world to me.
How To Print Your Racerback A-line Dress
Use Adobe Reader to download and print the pattern. Print on Landscape and use the Actual Size setting. Do not scale at all.
The most important measurement on this dress is the bust measurement.
How To Sew Your Racerback A-line Dress
You need to add a 3/8″ seam allowance to the pattern. Use a 5/8″ if you do not have a serger and want to use a french seam. Add 1/2″ for the hem.
If you are beginner sew the bias tape to the collar and armhole separately. If you are an advanced seamstress or want to improve your sewing skills, sew the pockets first then sew the dress at the shoulders then add the bias tape.
Sew the sides then add the bias tape. Finally, hem the dress.
Below are the easiest instructions for a beginner.
Step One: Sew The Pockets
These are unlined patch pockets. The easiest way to sew them is to follow the tutorial I have already made.
I did double stitching around the pocket mainly because I like the looks of it and it is a very strong way to sew a pocket down. It is also the perfect seam for a very casual dress which is what I'm intending racerback A-line dress to be.
Step Two: Sewing The Back Together
Join the top part of the back with bottom, right sides together sew at your chosen seam allowance and serge.
Step Three: Add The Bias Tape
Add the bias tape sewing the smaller side of the tape to the right side of the fabric.
Turn the tape and sew the tape down using either the stitch in the ditch technique or sew very closed to the edge with a matching thread.
Step Three: Sew The Shoulders
Rights sides together sew the shoulders.
Step Four: Sew The Sides
Step Five: Sew The Hem
Serge the hem and turn the hem 1/2″.
I hope you have enjoyed the second project on our series from print to finished product. Join me next week and I will be sharing a top with the same print but we will be mixing it with embroidery. I'm sure you'll love it.
See you next week and happy sewing! In case you missed the first project here is below.
As always, please feel free to leave your questions, comments, and suggestions in the comment section below.