DIY Lace Dress Tutorial: How to Make a Cute Bell-Sleeve Shift Dress

by Oaishe
7 Materials
3 Hours

The lace trend is still going strong! Not like the tablecloths of yesterday worn as dresses, this DIY lace dress tutorial uses a modern shift dress silhouette and pretty lace to make a lace dress with bell sleeves. Here’s how to make a lace dress you can wear to a party tonight!

Tools and materials:

Pinning the pattern piece to the fabric

1. Prepare the pattern

I used a bodice and sleeve pattern from a top to make the shift dress. Print and cut out the pattern.

I didn’t really measure the dress because measurements can be adjusted to make it narrower or wider depending on how you need it to fit. I used the basics from this pattern and extended the bodice down to make it a dress.

Lace fabric for the dress

2. Cut the fabric

Cut the fabric in 3 rectangles: one rectangle for the front, another for the back, and the third for the sleeves.

Cutting the front bodice piece

I pinned the pattern to the rectangles. At the front bodice pattern, I went in a bit at the waist and flared out the rest, marking it with chalk. Cut the lace. 

Follow the same technique for the back piece.

Carefully cutting around the lace design

For the neckline, I wanted to show the lace pattern, so I carefully cut around the rosettes. 

Attaching interfacing to the neckline

3. Attach interfacing

I used 2 layers of tulle as interfacing by the neckline to give that area some strength. I sewed it together and trimmed the tulle to match the rosettes.

How to make bell sleeves

4. Make the sleeves

I folded the last rectangle in half to cut the sleeves. I laid the sleeve pattern on top of the lace, keeping the top shape but then cut on a slant on the rest of the fabric to make a wider, bell-shaped sleeve. The wider the slant, the more flowy the sleeve will be!

Pinning and sewing the lace dress

5. Sew the lace dress

I matched the shoulder seams of the front and back pieces. I placed the pieces right sides together and sewed the seams using a straight stitch, then I sewed the side seams. 

How to make lace sleeves for a dress

I folded the sleeves together and then sewed the side seams of the sleeves.

How to make a dress with lace

I didn’t like the way the neckline looked so I folded in the petals to make a clean line and sewed it inside. 

How to sew bell sleeves

I attached the sleeves by placing them inside the armholes of the bodice with their right sides facing out while the bodice stayed right side facing in. After pinning, I sewed them in place using a straight stitch.

Hand-sewing bugle beads onto the bodice

I love beading so I hand-sewed these gorgeous bugle beads to the top to make it extra-fancy!

How to make a lace dress

DIY lace dress tutorial

DIY lace dress tutorial

There you have it! A beautiful modern lace dress with bell sleeves! Let me know if this DIY lace dress tutorial helped you decide what to wear to all the holiday parties coming up. It's super beautiful and easy to make. Please comment below if you made this!

Suggested materials:
  • 1 yard or more lace fabric
  • Tulle for interfacing
  • Sewing machine
See all materials

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