How to Sew Tiered Dress for American Girl Dolls - 18 inch doll clothes patterns

This tiered dress is so adorable and it’s easy to sew. You don’t even need a pattern for the tiered ruffled part of the dress. For this style, I chose a yellow fabric with tiny red floral prints. A quarter yard of fabric would be enough for this style plus a tiny piece for the lining for the bodice. It’s best to use a thinner fabric so the bodice would not get thick.

I also want to thank my Instagram friend, Jaimie of @rainbowdolldreams for her amazing photo of this dress.


free pattern 1

  1. Cut the main fabric and lining pieces using our tiered dress pattern. You can download the tiered dress pattern below.

Tiered Dress Sewing Pattern for American Girl Dolls

free pattern 18 inch dolls


2. With right sides together, sew the main fabric and lining pieces together.

free pattern 18 inch dolls


3. Turn the fabric to the right side and iron to flat it out. It’s also best to clip curves on the seam before turning it to release tension and reduce bulk.



4. With right sides together, sew the front bodice and back bodice together. Serge or zigzag the side seams for a cleaner look.



5. Fold both edges of the straps about 1/8 inch towards the center on the wrong side of the fabric. Then fold one on top of the other. Fold the short edge too about 1/8 inch towards the wrong side. Pin and edge stitch on all sides.


6) Find the center of the front bodice and mark it. Then fold the straps in half and pin it on the center of the front bodice. Topstitch the bodice to secure the strap in place.


7)Set your machine to longest stitch and sew two rows of basting stitch on the top part very close to the top edge. At this point, you can hem the skirt pieces too. Zigzag or serge the bottom edges, fold at 1/4 inch seam and topstitch.

8. Pull the basting stitch of the skirt pieces until it gathers and becomes the same width as the bodice. Place the shorter skirt on top of the longer skirt and sew them together.



9. Sew the bodice to the skirt at 3/8 inch seam to cover the basting stitch.


10. At this point, it’s best to make sure all the seams to serge or zigzag stitch all the seams including the center back seams.


11. Sew the back seam starting at about 1/2 inch below the waistline at 3/8 inch seam allowance.




12. Cut a 1 inch thick velcro in half and sew on the back bodice. I do this by folding the center back of the left bodice towards the inside and sewing the velcro on top of that fold. Then sew the other part of the velcro on top part of the right bodice.



13. The back should look nice and flat like this after sewing the velcro.



14. This is the finished dress and it looks so adorable.

My daughter and I also did a video tutorial on this dress, if you prefer that. Please check out our youtube channel and subscribe.