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MN2301 Jarrah / MN4301 Mini Jarrah / Sewalongs

How to make a Jarrah (and mini Jarrah!) sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves

How to sew Jarrah as a dress with bishop sleeves

Hi everyone, Holly here again! I’m here today with a fun Jarrah hack for you, creating a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves. It’s a two-in-one! I’ll be showing you how to lengthen the pattern to dress length (secret pyjamas, anyone?), as well as alter the sleeves to voluminous bishop sleeves. Two very simple hacks that create such a different look for Jarrah! And bonus – it’s really cute on Mini Jarrah as well.

how to make a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves using the Jarrah sweater pattern by Megan Nielsen PatternsFor the bishop sleeves, you will need to use the sleeve view with the cuffs.

For the dress length, I suppose it would work with any of the views, really. Straight hem, banded hem, and even a tie hem, could all be cute as the bottom edge of a sweatshirt dress. But I personally think the curved hem works best! So that’s what I’ll be showing you today.

how to make a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves using the Jarrah sweater pattern by Megan Nielsen PatternsOne more note – for this tutorial, I’m going to use Mini Jarrah for the step-by-step photos. Only because it’s easier to work with and photograph on a smaller scale. But just know that it is the exact same process for both the adult and mini versions. I will note anytime there is a difference between the two (just in measurements).

Ok, let’s just get started!

Altering the bodice pattern to dress length

how to make a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves using the Jarrah sweater pattern by Megan Nielsen PatternsOn both the front and back bodice pieces, cut straight across the line that says “lengthen or shorten here”.

how to make a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves using the Jarrah sweater pattern by Megan Nielsen PatternsStarting with the front bodice, tape the upper half to a blank piece of paper, so that the centre front edge lines up with the straight edge of the paper. Tape in place.

how to make a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves using the Jarrah sweater pattern by Megan Nielsen PatternsDetermine how much you want to add in length. I can’t give you an exact measurement, because it will vary by size and personal preference. For reference – I added 6″ to the mini pattern for a 3-year-old, and 12″ to my women’s version.

Once you know how much you want to add, measure that far down the straight edge of the paper from the bottom of the upper half. Draw a horizontal line at this point, so that it is parallel to the bottom edge of the upper half.

how to make a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves using the Jarrah sweater pattern by Megan Nielsen PatternsPlace the bottom half of the front bodice along this line, again making sure that the centre front also lines up with the straight edge of the paper. Tape in place.

how to make a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves using the Jarrah sweater pattern by Megan Nielsen PatternsUsing your ruler, connect the upper half and bottom half together smoothly at the side seam.

how to make a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves using the Jarrah sweater pattern by Megan Nielsen PatternsCut out along your new side seam.

how to make a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves using the Jarrah sweater pattern by Megan Nielsen PatternsRepeat the same process for the back bodice, making sure that you are adding in the exact same amount.

When they are all done, the side seams should still line up perfectly.

Altering the sleeve pattern to a bishop sleeve

how to make a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves using the Jarrah sweater pattern by Megan Nielsen PatternsDivide your sleeve pattern into 6 sections by drawing 5 parallel lines evenly divided from the top edge of the sleeve.

how to make a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves using the Jarrah sweater pattern by Megan Nielsen Patterns how to make a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves using the Jarrah sweater pattern by Megan Nielsen PatternsCut along these lines. Start cutting at the bottom edge up towards the top edge. Cut to, but not through, the top. This leaves a “hinge” to move each section around.

how to make a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves using the Jarrah sweater pattern by Megan Nielsen PatternsPlace a large piece of paper underneath. Starting at one side, tape down the first section.

how to make a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves using the Jarrah sweater pattern by Megan Nielsen PatternsSpread each section an equal amount, taping as you go. How much you spread each section will determine how full your sleeve is.

For the mini version, I spread each section 1″.

For the adult version, I spread each section 2″.

You can see in our finished photos what each of those resulted in.

how to make a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves using the Jarrah sweater pattern by Megan Nielsen PatternsOnce you have each section spread and taped down, connect and smooth out the bottom edge.

how to make a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves using the Jarrah sweater pattern by Megan Nielsen PatternsCut out your new sleeve pattern.

As you can see, the new bishop sleeve pattern (right) is now a different shape than the original sleeve pattern (left). It actually looks like an inverted version of the original.

how to make a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves using the Jarrah sweater pattern by Megan Nielsen PatternsThis part is optional. But if you want your bishop sleeve to be really blouse-y and balloon-y, you may want your cuff to be tighter on your wrist. To do this, I removed an inch from the cuff pattern piece. (I did this on the adult one only and not the mini. I knew she wouldn’t like it being tight on her wrist.)

Sewing the bishop sleeves

how to make a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves using the Jarrah sweater pattern by Megan Nielsen PatternsSew together the shoulder seams and neckband (or funnel neck) as directed in the instructions.

how to make a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves using the Jarrah sweater pattern by Megan Nielsen Patterns how to make a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves using the Jarrah sweater pattern by Megan Nielsen PatternsAttach your sleeves to your bodice as directed in the instructions. Just remember that the shape is different now, and the shorter edge is the edge that you sew to the bodice.

how to make a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves using the Jarrah sweater pattern by Megan Nielsen PatternsNow also sew the side seams together as directed in the instructions (are you sensing a theme here haha).

how to make a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves using the Jarrah sweater pattern by Megan Nielsen PatternsNow for the fun part- bringing the bishop sleeve to life!

Set your machine straight stitch to the longest length and sew a line of basting stitches around the bottom edge of the sleeve, 1/4″ away from the raw edge. Starting at the seam, sewing around, and finishing on the other side of the seam. Do not backstitch, and leave long thread tails.

how to make a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves using the Jarrah sweater pattern by Megan Nielsen PatternsSew your cuffs together as directed in the instructions.

how to make a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves using the Jarrah sweater pattern by Megan Nielsen Patternshow to make a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves using the Jarrah sweater pattern by Megan Nielsen PatternsGently pull on the thread tails to gather the bottom edge of the sleeve until it lines up with the width of the cuff.

how to make a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves using the Jarrah sweater pattern by Megan Nielsen PatternsPlace your cuff over your gathered sleeve, with the right sides together, lining up the raw edges. Pin together

how to make a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves using the Jarrah sweater pattern by Megan Nielsen PatternsSew, using a zig-zag stitch, 1/4″ from the raw edge. It’s easier to sew from the inside/gathered sleeve side.

how to make a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves using the Jarrah sweater pattern by Megan Nielsen PatternsFinish the raw edge with your preferred method.

how to make a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves using the Jarrah sweater pattern by Megan Nielsen PatternsTurn the cuff the right way around and ta-da! a perfectly blouse-y voluminous bishop style sleeve.

All you have to do now is hem your dress according to the instructions and you are good to go.

how to make a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves using the Jarrah sweater pattern by Megan Nielsen PatternsHere is a good look at the mini version! As you can see, her bishop sleeves are not as blouse-y and pronounced, because I didn’t tighten the cuffs around her wrist. Still super cute, though! Very comfy and casual.

how to make a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves using the Jarrah sweater pattern by Megan Nielsen Patterns how to make a sweatshirt dress with bishop sleeves using the Jarrah sweater pattern by Megan Nielsen PatternsAnd here is the tighter cuff around my wrist! I love how this little detail dresses up a comfy casual sweatshirt dress.

I hope you enjoy it, and we would love to see if you make a version for yourself!


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About Author

Holly writes part time for the Megan Nielsen blog– sewing like crazy, creating tutorials and sewalongs. She has been sewing since she was a little girl, and has her degree in apparel design. Now she’s a stay at home mama, and spends all her free nap times at her sewing machine.

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Tammy
Tammy
2 years ago

This is an excellent alternative for a contemporary design. Your detailed blog posts with various iterations of the pattern are fantastic!

Katie Vander Donk
Katie Vander Donk
2 years ago

How much additional fabric would we need to add the 12inch length to the shirt? Would I add 12 inches to the required length of fabric listed on the pattern?
Thank you.

Chris
Chris
1 year ago

How much material do I need to use a different fabric (as shown) for the curved hem version?

Meg
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Meg
1 year ago
Reply to  Chris

Hi Chris, I’m not sure I understand. You would need to add 12″ to your fabric requirements if using this tutorial to make a dress. If you are planning to make it from two different fabrics then you would need to figure the split out depending on where you slash your pattern pieces.

Meg
Admin
Meg
1 year ago

Hi Katie! Yes you should be fine to add 12″ to the required fabric if you are able to lay your pattern pieces side by side. If not you may need to add 24″. Hope that helps!

Katie
2 years ago

I was looking for a pattern to make a lookalike of a super expensive Russian designer’s dress (Alena Akhmadullina’s Sweet Syrup) and I think this will work beautifully! Thank you!