How to Crochet Baby Dresses

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It's not difficult to crochet a bit of yarn into an adorable baby dress.
It's not difficult to crochet a bit of yarn into an adorable baby dress. (Image: Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images)

Baby dresses are adorable and not hard to crochet. They make a wonderful gift for a baby shower or to present on a baby's homecoming from the hospital. Using a soft baby yarn, you can make them in an assortment of colors. This project features a round yoke and a lacy skirt and flounce, and is worked all in one piece, eliminating seams. It makes a newborn size, but can easily be sized up.

Things You'll Need

  • Crochet hook, size E
  • Baby or fingering weight yarn
  • 1/2-inch satin ribbon to match or contrast with the yarn color
  • 3 small buttons (optional)

Bodice

Chain 76. Single crochet in third chain from hook; half-double crochet across; chain two and turn. Half-double crochet in the first single crochet; work two half-double crochet stitches in each single crochet across; chain two and turn.

Half-double crochet in same stitch, and then half-double crochet in the next 12 stitches. Make a shell stitch in next stitch. A shell stitch is three half-double crochet, chain two, three half-double crochet in the same stitch. Half-double crochet in the next 37 stitches; shell in next; repeat; two half-double crochet in the next 13 stitches. Chain two, turn. You should have four evenly spaced shell stitches in the row.

Half-double crochet in the same stitch, one half-double crochet in the next stitch, two in the next; then alternate one stitch and two stitches until you reach the shell stitch. Make another shell stitch in the center of the shell. Repeat to the end of the row. Half-double crochet in same stitches, one half-double crochet in next two stitches, two in the next; repeat until you reach the shell stitch. Shell in shell. Repeat to the end of the row.

Half-double crochet in same st, one half-double crochet in the next three stitches, two in the next; repeat until you reach the shell stitch. Make a shell in the center of the shell. Repeat this step to the end of the row. When you reach the end of the row, do not turn, but join to the top of the first stitch of the row. Chain two and begin to crochet in rounds.

Continue the same pattern as before, increasing by one more stitch between shells until there are 10 half-double crochet between each shell. In the next round, half-double crochet in the first half-double crochet, skip the next half-double crochet, half-double crochet in next half-double crochet. Half-double crochet in every other stitch, skipping over the shells; this will make the armholes. Join at the beginning of the round.

Skirt

Make a shell stitch in each chain one space in the next round.Join. Make a shell stitch in the chain two space of each shell in the following round. Repeat this round until the skirt measures seven inches

Make a ruffle by crocheting triple shells in the next round: slip stitch to the chain two spaces; chain three (chain three counts as the first double crochet), make two double crochet stitches, chain two; make three double crochet stitches, chain two; make three more double crochet stitches. Repeat a triple shell in each chain two space all the way around.

Make double shells in the next round, only with double crochet stitches instead of half-double crochet stitches. Continue for another 3 inches. End off and weave in loose ends.

Sew on small buttons or ribbon ties at the back opening. Thread the ribbon through the stitches where the bodice and skirt meet, and tie in front or back as preferred.

Tips & Warnings

  • Make the dress one size larger by switching to a size F crochet hook; to increase further, add another four stitches to the foundation chain for each size increase, and add one more stitch between shell stitches.
  • Use a variegated yarn to add color and interest.
  • Experiment with different stitch patterns in the skirt or ruffle.

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