DIY Hand Stamped Dip Dyed Maxi Dress 30 Days Of Sundresses

DIY Hand Stamped Dip Dyed Maxi DressToday I’m sharing my hand stamped, dip dyed organic cotton maxi dress tutorial for the 30 Days Of Sundresses Series at Melly Sews, a month long bonanza of sundress tutorials for those looking for summer sewing inspiration! sundressgraphic-copy-300x300You can visit Melissa’s blog to enter her  fabric giveaway and see all of the month’s sundress projects.

DIY Hand Stamped Dip Dyed Maxi Dress

A couple of years ago, I bought some wooden stamps at The Rose Bowl Flea Market. Recently, I was sent a few yards of beautiful natural colored organic cotton with lycra from Organic Cotton Plus. It was an undyed, organic cotton jersey with just a hint of lycra, in a perfect weight for dresses.  I absolutely love the quality. Being organic, as well as cotton, it was a perfect canvas to hand dye and stamp. Polyester blends don’t take dye very well. This was the perfect opportunity to finally try out my Indian fabric stamp! DIY Hand Stamped Dip Dyed Maxi DressTo make the pattern, I simple traced a store bought maxidress I already had.stampeddress1I ironed the cotton lycra and then pinned the red dress to it. I traced around it and added 1 inch seam allowances.stampeddress2

Whenever I copy store bought clothes little things surprise me. For instance, this dress was quite expensive for a simple cotton/ poly ruffle fabric maxi dress. I can buy this exact same fabric in downtown LA at Micheal Levine’s for 5 dollars a yard, yet the dress retailed originally for around 150 dollars.  I bought it at the outlet for more than half off in a moment of weakness. Yes, I love to shop sometimes, too!

 But, I was surprised that this Max Studio dress had serged necklines and armholes, a sign of shoddy in my book. Maybe that’s OK for a Forever 21 throwaway dress but this higher end dress? Back in my day…yadda yadda yadda…stampeddress3

When copying store bought clothes to make patterns, it’s a good idea to add extra ease. Not all knits stretch equally and some need a bit more room than others to be comfortable and look good.


Once I got the fit down on my dress, I finished it off with a self faced neckline and armholes and got busy with the fun part. Stamping!

After a bit of experimenting, I found that rolling fabric paint onto the stamp with a sponge roller worked well. A fresh coat had to be rolled on after each stamp, making it a bit time consuming to do the whole dress.stampeddress5 stampeddress6

Once the stamps were dry, I used Coca brown RIT Dye and added some to a pot with hot water, until it was about 8 inches high. I got the whole dress wet with plain water, then I dipped the bottom of the dress in about 1 foot deep , then took it out.  I poured out most of the dye and then added more water so the dye  was really diluted.  I quickly dipped the dress back in a bit deeper. I used pins to pin across the dress so I would have a guide to dip evenly across the hem .

DIY Hand Stamped Dip Dyed Maxi DressI love my new dress!

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  1. says

    This is so great – the fit is perfect on you and I love that you created your own textile. Thanks for sewing along again!

  2. says

    Love this! What a gorgeous dress. I have started tracing a lot of RTW clothing and making duplicates, only better! This dress would bring high dollar in a boutique for sure. You make me want to buy stamps to do this!

  3. says

    This dress was simply beautiful on you!!! I was truly impressed, and feel honored to have been able to see it in person!!! Gorgeous Justine!

  4. says

    Beautiful! This is stunning – the stamp, the dye, everything. And I know what you mean about the shoddy construction. It seems like even higher end designer clothes are cutting corners lately – but luckily we can sew! If your dress was in a store it would cost WAAAY more than $150 because it’s that pretty *and* well made.

  5. Olga Becker says

    This is amazing! I would have never guessed you made the whole stamping/dying thing yourself to make this gorgeous dress! Looks gorgeous on you!

  6. cindy coven says

    I love this dress. I am a stamper and can’t wait to stamp a dress. What a fantastic and easy idea. Thanks for sharing

  7. Angela Rosenthal says

    Just a tip for anyone dying fabric. Make sure fabric has been washed and NO form of fabric softener used. There will be less fading and spots. When fabrics are manufactured a oil gets on them and creates a barrier, making it hard to dye fabric. I love procion dyes.