How To Sew A Swing Dress That Fits

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I love a great swing dress. I especially love a maxi length swing dress. They are easy to wear, a breeze to sew, a simple to fit. I’m going to share with you how to sew a swing dress that fits using Silhouette Patterns #4000 Swing Dress pattern.

If you need further sewing help, I offer online private sewing classes. I can help you take your garments from handmade to custom fit, high-end.

We have lots of sewing patterns in our pattern stash. I’m sure you even have a few dress patterns that you like, that just need a little tweaking.

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Consider this blog your personal sewing class! A quick and easy make that will have you floating in your perfectly fit swing dress.

The fabric for this dress is from They offer a huge selection of garment fabrics and notions. This John Kaldor Portia ITY Silky Knit Fabric is soft, floaty, and a breeze to sew.


Once you have chosen your dress pattern, and you are happy with the way it fits, you need to determine the finished length. You need a straight measurement from the underarm to the floor. I step on the tape then pull it up to my underarm. Once you know the finished length of your dress, you can add the hem allowance. For a knit fabric I use 1/2 inch; I either serge and turn a 1/4 inch, or double fold 1/4 inch.

How To Sew A Swing Dress That Fits
Decide on the finished length


Transfer your desired length to your sewing pattern. I don’t always make a new pattern, I find that it’s easiest to just use rulers. If you are queasy about cutting freeform, you can use chalk to get a straight line.

Start by laying your pattern down on the fabric. Secure your measuring tape at the underarm and at the desired length of your dress. At this point, I add a ruler across the bottom and then angle a second ruler down the side to intersect with the hemline. Keep the angle of the dress for a flowy feel.

Start measuring at the underarm
Use rulers for cutting lines

For this garment, I altered the sleeve on the dress pattern. You can review how to give your sleeve some flutter in my sewing class post — How To Make A Flutter Sleeve.


Just follow the sewing pattern instructions to complete your garment. Nothing has changed except the length.


Bias binding neckline

On this garment, and on most of my garments, I use a bias binding to finish the edges. It gives your garment a high-end look. Purchased bias tape is never the same color or hand as your fabric and making bias binding is simple and easy. You can check out this YouTube video on making bias binding.

Ready To Wear

Happy Sewing!


11 thoughts on “How To Sew A Swing Dress That Fits

  1. I love a maxi length dress! Easy way to elevate an outfit. This makes me want to find some beautiful fabric and give it a go.

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