Are you ready to make the Athena Dress Hack? Rachel is here today sharing her knowledge with us. Let’s dive in!
I absolutely love easy-to-wear summer dresses. After I made my first Athena tank, I knew I needed a few Athena dresses in my summer rotation. I’m so excited to share this hack with you! Grab the pattern here.
Cutting out your Front Bodice
First we will cut out the bodice pieces. You’ll notice the lengthen/shorten line for the Athena tank lands at the natural waist. This is where we will be having the dress bodice end, and the skirt attach.
I folded my front pattern piece on the lengthen/shorten line, then flipped the part below the line out of the way so that i could cut my pattern piece out.
If you are using a projector you can simply cut the bottom line of the bodice on the lengthen/shorten line.
Now onto the back. If you are doing view 3, as I did, please note how I altered my pattern piece to create a larger seam allowance between the bottom of the cut out, and where the skirt will attach.
No modifications should be necessary for views 1 and 2. As with the front pattern piece, I folded then flipped my back pattern piece out of the way to cut the fabric out.
Since I freehand modified the lower curve of the back cut out, I placed the already cut piece on top of the remaining fabric in order to cut a mirror image.
Construction of your Athena Bodice
Now, construct the bodice in accordance with the Athena tank tutorial instructions. We will meet up when it’s completed except for the bottom hem step.
Making Your Skirt
In order to make the skirt, we will be creating a tube that will be gathered at the top, and hemmed at the bottom. In order to calculate the dimensions, we will first need to see how wide to make it to accommodate the gathers. I went with 1.5 times the width of my bodice (which is 32 inches around, or 16 inches when laying flat on the table). 1.5 x 32 = 48 inches, so I folded my fabric to create a piece 48 inches wide across the stretch (or 24 inches wide from the fold). I could have instead cut two pieces 24 inches wide and had 2 side seams on the skirt, however, my cut of fabric was large enough to where I could cut on the fold.
To calculate the skirt length, I hung a measuring tape down from my natural waist and noted how many inches down it was to my preferred bottom hem length. I added 1/2 inch for the top seam allowance and 1 inch for the bottom hem allowance. I ended up with 25.5 inches long. To create the tube, place your skirt piece(s) right sides together and sew along the raw edge(s) (with the grain/perpendicular to the stretch).
Gathering the Skirt
To create the gathers at the top, I used the straight stitch thread pulling method (you can use another method if you prefer). Gather your fabric until the skirt is about as wide as the bottom edge of the bodice.
Adding the skirt to the bodice
Insert your bodice down into the skirt, right sides together, with the bottom edges of the bodice matching up with the raw gathered top edge of the skirt.
Matching up the side seam(s) of the skirt with the bodice side seams, pin and then sew the skirt and bodice together using a zig zag stitch or serger to hold the gathers in place.
Hemming your Athena Dress
After the skirt is attached to the bodice, hem the bottom of the skirt as you would hem the bottom of the Athena tank. Turn your garment right side out, and you’re all set!