The Gnome Dress

A simple dress made from a t-shirt, similar to this post.

  • 1/2 yard of fabric
  • small bit of skin colored felt
  • embroidery floss for gnome eyes
  • Coordinating sewing thread
  • t-shirt

Cut the t-shirt just below the chest and armpits, adding 1/2" seam allowance. Cut off the bottom hem of the t-shirt. Cut remaining t-shirt fabric in half. Remove one seam on each t-shirt section, and leave one hem attached for two long strips which will reserve for step 3.

Fold your fabric in half, we measured straight down 15".  

Sew t-shirt strips together forming one long border. Fold bottom half of strip over 1/4" and hem. Attach to the bottom of the dress fabric by placing right sides together and using 1/4" seam on top. 

Place right sides of dress fabric together and sew a side seam, leaving 1/4" at top free of stitches. 

Sew a running stitch at the top (this is just regular straight stitch, without back stitching at the beginning or end and leave some slack for pulling the thread later).  Pull on the ends of the threads slightly to gather the dress fabric. Set aside for step 7.


If desired, sew on Gnome applique onto the shirt and shirt pocket. We used a piece of peach felt for the face, some of the dress fabric for the hat, and black embroidery thread for the eyes.

Attach the dress fabric to the t-shirt by placing right sides together and sewing a 1/4" hem. You may have to adjust your running stitch gathering to fit the bodice before sewing the hem.  

These dresses only cost us $4.50 to make and you could save even more by recyling your children's old t-shirts. We love cuteness on a budget. 


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