Free Pattern Download | Adjustable Dress Pattern | Sewing Slice of Life Dress Tutorial

Slice of Life Dress Tutorial | An Adjustable Waist Dress | Pinafore Dress

Welcome to Ko Fabrics, I'm Sarah Tomko and I'll be talking you through how to make our newest free adjustable dress pattern, the Slice of Life Dress. We were inspired to make this adjustable dress pattern after going through our Capsule Wardrobe process, and deciding that a summer pinafore dress or an adjustable waist dress was something we wanted to add into our collection.

A few notes on this pattern and tutorial. You can download the Adjustable Dress Pattern Instructions and PDF for free by heading over to our Patterns page and downloading the pattern, it'll be delivered to your email after checkout (no credit card required).

Our tutorial and written instructions aren't 1:1 lined up sequencing wise. We hadn't quiet figured out the optimal way to assemble this dress at the time of filming, so in order to have the best experience please follow the written instructions. And use the YouTube chapters to jump around to each section, we've tried to name each step the same.


Trillium bloom and the liminal
breeze: under the new sun

you take a breath. Different
here, now, the field

of grass you find yourself in
impossibly full of color.

Later the weekend mimosas
but for now it’s okay

to just be free and alone,
to stand in this field 

and let the last rime
of winter finally melt

from your skin, your mind,
your spring-starved heart.

Poem by Dan Gualtieri


Watch the Adjustable Dress Pattern Tutorial:

If you want a quick way to shop for this tutorial we recommend purchasing our Adjustable Dress Pattern Sewing Kit

Materials Needed:

  • 2.5-3.5 Yards of fabric (see pattern)
  • 4 Buttons
  • Sew in interfacing or fusible interfacing. Roughly 2.5" strip that is your waist band +6", and another strip that is about 8".
  • Matching Thread
  • Sewing Machine & Needles. Although you can hand sew this project as well.


Purchase our adjustable waist dress pattern kit:


TLDR Pinafore Dress Assembly Instructions:

If you are familiar with sewing wrap dresses, or pinafore dresses. And want to quickly assemble this Adjustable Dress Pattern, this quick guide will give you the fastest overview of assembly. Without all the details. This pattern uses a 5/8” seam allowance. Finish all seams after sewing together.  For comprehensive instructions please download the PDF Adjustable Dress Pattern below.

  1. Cut out all pieces marking dots, notches, and darts. If the skirt is too big for your fabric, please fold the pattern along the line, and use the gore piece. With scraps cut out 4-5 strips of bias. (Fold twice to make 1/2” bias tape)
  2. Stay stitch the armholes and the necklines. Then Sew all the darts together.
  3. Add the interfacing to the placket areas. Fold placket, baste, then stitch in place.
  4. Add button holes. (wait to add buttons till end)
  5. Sew the shoulders and side seams together of the top. Test fit.
  6. Finish the neckline and armholes with the bias tape. After attaching clip curves, under stitch, then trim down. Fold to the inside. Stitch down.
  7. Baste interfacing to outside waistband pieces.
  8. Add Waistband holes to the outside band. Cut a piece of scrap fabric and place on outside of hole. Sew around edge. cut the hole open, and flip scrap to inside of waistband.
  9. Sew front and back waistband together at the sides, then sandwich outside and inside waistbands to the top. Line up dots on top and pin together. Stitch around edge. Keep inside waist band folded up till later. Press outside waistband down.
  10. Add pockets to 1 panel. Fold under top edges on lines and stitch down. Then line up to dots on skirt and stitch down.
  11. Add Gores to one panel of skirt. Clipping close to the dot.
  12. Sew 2 skirt panels together.
  13. Baste the top edge of skirt panels, running 2 gathering lines. Then Gather.
  14. Attach the waistband to the skirt. Lining up notches. evenly space gathers. baste, fix any areas that you don’t like, then stitch in place.
  15. Try on and ensure hem is where you want it. Then fold up Hem and stitch down.
  16. Tie: With spare bias, unfold, and cut a piece roughly 1.5 your waistband size. Sew right sides together, leaving a hole in the middle. Trim, Flip inside out, Whip stitch hole closed on the drawstring.
  17. Before sewing the inside waistband down. Add tie run between the holes and around the dress.
  18. Optional: To reinforce the pockets, cut strips of muslin and sew together using the method for the drawstring. Tack to top corners of pockets on the inside. Then sew into waistband during the next step.
  19. Fold down inside waistband and whip stitch to the seam allowance from the skirt. Sew on buttons.
  20. Then you are done with your adjustable dress pattern instructions and can wash and wear your dress! Please following washing instructions for the fabric you purchase.


For comprehensive instructions please download our free adjustable dress pattern.

We hope you enjoy sewing this Adjustable Dress Pattern as much as I did. If you end up making this pinafore style dress please tag us @ko.fabrics on Instagram or Facebook! We love to see the creations you come up with.
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