Thursday, May 10, 2012

Box pleated jumper dress pattern and tutorial

Free Sewing Pattern: Box Pleated Jumper
Box pleated jumper pattern

This jumper dress stayed in my 'unfinished' projects pile for so long that I almost gave up any hope of ever completing it. But then I happened upon it while looking for something else and decided that the blue damask fabric was way too cute to let go to waste. So I finally finished this jumper dress. Just in time for some spring summer fun. I'm expecting a lot of wear from this dress this spring and summer.

Front Bodice
Back Bodice

  • Half yard each of two coordinating wovens for the dress
  • quarter yard of another coordinating woven for shoulder straps and elastic casing
  • 1 inch wide elastic - 10 inches
  • buttons - 2

  • Measure all around the waist + 5 inches - Lets call it W
  • Divide W by 6 =  lets call it SW

  • Measure the desired length from waist + 1 inch - lets call it L2
  • Measure the desired hieght of yoke from waist - lets call it L1
  • Measure the length of shoulder straps from back waist to front yoke = SL


sew strips together to make a pleated skirt

Cut 6 strips of width = SW and length = L2 from each of the bigger fabrics. That will give you a total of 12 strips. Now join these strips along their longer (L2) sides in alternating manner. (Right sides together). When you join the last strip sew it back to the raw side of first one, creating a wide tube

2. Sewing the box pleat

sewing box pleats

box pleat tutorial
Sew box pleats in the skirt such that fabric2 is hidden in the pleats. Here's a detailed tutorial on how to sew box pleats.


Repeat the process with all the black strips making 6 box pleats in total.

4. Sewing the front yoke:
sewing the yoke

I forgot to take many pics while attaching the yoke to the skirt so I'll try to explain it verbally and with some diagrams.
Measure the skirt waist after all the pleating. This is the final waist of the dress before we add elastic to it. The front of the yoke will cover about two-thirds of this length and the back will cover the remaining 
First cut 1 piece of front yoke from each of the coordinating fabrics from the skirt. Sew along the top edges (right sides together). Cut notches along the seam, take care not to cut into the seams.

finished yoke

Turn out. Smooth the edges. Iron.

5. Sewing the shoulder straps:
sewing shoulder straps

Cut two strips 4 inch X 10 inch each from the third fabric. Fold them in half along the longer side and sew a seam with right sides together.

6. Sewing the back band:
Cut two strips of length = 2.5 inch X width= Remaining width of the skirt after the front yoke+1inch. Place them one over the other ( right sides together). Sandwich the shoulder straps between the two strips such that the raw ends of shoulder straps line up with the raw edges of back band
You could place the shoulder straps close together or about 2-3 inches apart.Sew a seam along the width of the back band.

7. Open the front yoke and align the ends of back band with the ends of front yoke and sew at the sides with right sides together.

8. Line up the front of jumper bodice (raw sides)  with the center front of pleated skirt we had made earlier ( Right sides together). Sew along the periphery of skirt. The bodice is now attached to the skirt.

9. Fold the raw ends of inner layer about half inch on itself and iron.

10. Sew a seam right next to the bodice, making sure you're catching the inner fabric that you folded in step 9. Leave two gaps on either side of the front bodice to insert elastic.

picture from some other project, just to illustrate the process

 Insert elastic through one of the gaps with the help of a safety pin. Pull it out from the other end.

12. Pull the elastic such that the total width of jumper is about 2 inch less than child's waist.

picture from some other project, just to illustrate the process

Fix the elastic in place with zig-zag stitches at the ends. Go over the elastic 2-3 times with zig zag stitch to reinforce. This seam will be under a lot of stress when the jumper is worn so you want it to be strong.

14. Sew the openings shut.

sewing buttons and buttonholes on the jumper

15. Sew two buttons at the ends of shoulder ties and two buttonholes on the front bodice.


16. Hem the skirt by folding twice. Iron the pleats well for the nice peek-a-boo effect.

PS: If you make it don't forget to share the pics with me. I love to see your creations. Also if any step is unclear please let me know in the comments.

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  1. Adorable dress, thanks for the great tutorial!

  2. What a pretty dress, who wouldn’t love it!

  3. great tutorial! Thanks for linking up to Sew Woodsy!

  4. How fun! I love the colors. I'd love for you to link it up to Crafty Cousins.


  5. Gorgeous little dress with fabulous fabrics too!

    Thanks for linking to a Round Tuit!
    Hope you have a fabulous week!
    Jill @ Creating my way to Success

  6. So cute! Thanks for linking up! Hope to see you again this week.

  7. Thank you for participating in Show Your Stuff Blog Hop, You are invited to come back:

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