Tutti Frutti Summer Ruffle Toddler Dress

Dressing a toddler is a science. Goal: quickest way to put on clothes with least resistance. Buttons - the fewer the better, less to snap, less to get in the button hole. Zippers - these are pretty quick but if your toddler knows how to unzip like mine, it negates the whole putting on clothes in the first place because the clothes will come off shortly.


These beautiful, easy to make, easy to put on ruffle neck summer dresses!

The neck line is elastic, creating a girly ruffle that also fit a dual purpose as pseudo-cap sleeve to protect baby shoulders from the summer sun. They're also easy to take off (by the adult, not by the child...well, not yet) when it comes time to change or it's meal time.

The first one took me about 90 minutes but after that I made four more and they took about an hour each (this Tutti Frutti dress was the second one). Looking forward to creating a whole collection!!!

Inspired by Once Upon a Sewing Machine: Ruffle Neck Peasant Dress Pattern and Tutorial.
For the pattern, I used the 12-18 month size and only cut out the pieces for the body. For the ruffle, I cut a rectangle of 30 x 5 inches but wasn't exact about it. Some of the other ruffle dresses I used a width of 6 inches and plus or minus a few inches for the 30" just depending on how much fabric I had left and how "ruffly" I wanted the neck to look. Instead of an elastic casing for the arm holes, I just did a double hem. To make the arm holes smaller on another dress, I trimmed an inch off the top of the front and back pieces of the dress since by doing a double hem in the arm holes instead of adding on elastic, it makes the holes bigger. 15" of elastic seems to be enough for this munchkin but adjust as needed (Once Upon a Sewing Machine tutorial suggests 16" to 17" elastic length for 12-18 month size dress).


  1. She's so cute! I'm so glad we could give you a starting point. My first goal with small toddlers, and ok preschoolers too, is to be able to get it on fast! -Rachel


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