FREE Pattern and tutorial: The Eriqua Dress

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SergerPepper Eriqua Dress FREE sewing pattern

Some time ago I shared with you The Mod Dress free pattern: it was the dress I designed and sewn for me for my friend’s wedding. Today I’m sharing my daughter’s dress for this occasion, one more FREE pattern: a pinafore sized 5 years old, born from a Zara dress you’ve seen several times, if you’re Pinterest addicted at least half of me, this one:


I’m not sure where it comes from, I’ve linked it to Zara’s site because it’s here that Pins and Google search for Images points…

It’s a really simple pinafore, fully lined, with an invisible zipper on the back (check here how to shorten a zipper and how to apply it with a standard zipper foot).

The stunning detail are those inverted pleats, with embroidered bar tacks in contrasting thread (I made it in violet, because wedding Dress Code was Violet!).

It’s a size 5 but I can say it should be ok for any girl aged 4-6 years.

I decided to call this FREE pattern Eriqua Dress in honor of my friend, the Wife of the wedding!

Would you like to have this FREE pattern?

I’m sharing this pattern with all my subscriber by email, so if you’d like to receive your PDF copy of this FREE pattern, please subscribe by entering your name and email in the box at the beginning of this post!

And now, the tutorial!

What you need:

– fabric (mine is light wool)

– lining

– invisible zipper

– contrasting thread

– the FREE pattern size 5yo (follow me by email and I’ll send it to you)

See the pattern layout here: SergerPepper – The Eriqua Dress – size 5y0 ALL

How to create this dress

First of all, let’s create inverted pleats; if you have no idea about how to do that, try reading this Craftsy tutorial, is perfect!

I started marking pleats lines of folding basting with a long stitch because my Frixion Pen would not be visible after the first turn of pressing…


I usually try not to baste, but this time you’ll achieve a much more better result doing it: so baste the inverted pleats and press well (I left my front piece below three heavy books all night long, just to be sure pleats were creating and lasting well!).


Serger-Pepper-Eriqua-Dress-sewing-free-pattern all pinned

After basting, you can mark bar tacks (keep them evenly distributed and perfectly aligned – use your Frixion Pen for a perfect result).

Now sew bar tacks using the widest but shortest zig-zag you have.

Serger-Pepper-Eriqua-Dress-sewing-free-pattern bar tacks

Tip: try several settings on scraps before deciding which is your favorite, then sew on your dress!

Be happy, the hardest part is done!

Let’s put together this simple lined dress! I’m doing this in a nice way, which does not involve any hand stitching (lazy girl!) and it’s the same I used on my Lined Foldable Market Bag.

First of all, apply your invisible zipper on back (here you can find my tips on shortening zippers and applying it without a specific foot).

Then sew lining front pieces, gathering between marks the skirt piece and stitching it to the top piece. Press the seam allowances toward the top.

SergerPepper Eriqua Dress FREE sewing pattern lining

Serger-Pepper-Eriqua-Dress-sewing-free-pattern lining complete

Sew then shoulders together on both main fabric and lining (separately!).

Serger-Pepper-Eriqua-Dress-sewing-free-pattern sew shoulders

Press seam allowances opened, using your tailor’s ham or, even better, your point presser/tailor’s clapper.

Serger-Pepper-Eriqua-Dress-sewing-free-pattern press seams

Now put lining and main fabrics together along the neckline, right sides together (RST), and pin (I like to baste here too, just to have a nice and perfect neckline).

Serger-Pepper-Eriqua-Dress-sewing-free-pattern neckline

Serger-Pepper-Eriqua-Dress-sewing-free-pattern neckline sewn

Sew all around, clip curves and press seam allowances toward the lining, understitching.

Serger-Pepper-Eriqua-Dress-sewing-free-pattern understitching

Tip: pay attention to the zipper upper endings, you need to be really accurate to obtain right and left sides equal!

Serger-Pepper-Eriqua-Dress-sewing-free-pattern zipper lining

Serger-Pepper-Eriqua-Dress-sewing-free-pattern neckline sewn

Here’s the tricky part: lay flat (wrong sides together) the dress and start rolling one side toward the other, until you reach the opposite armhole.

Serger-Pepper-Eriqua-Dress-sewing-free-pattern lining armholes

Pin along marked seamlines, from side seam to side seam:

Serger-Pepper-Eriqua-Dress-sewing-free-pattern pin

Now sew and clip seam allowances on curves. Turn inside out and give a good press and be careful to keep the lining inside and not showing outside!
Repeat on the other side:

Serger-Pepper-Eriqua-Dress-sewing-free-pattern armhole lined

Now you can sew the lining along the zipper (by machine), putting RST and sewing on seam allowances and zipper tape only.

Serger-Pepper-Eriqua-Dress-sewing-free-pattern zipper

Serger-Pepper-Eriqua-Dress-sewing-free-pattern back


Sew together along the center back seam the rest of the lining below the zipper.

Now into the side seams: match front and back side seams in the lining and in the main fabric and sew them all in once, starting from main fabric hemline, matching the underarms where lining meet main fabric and ending on lining hem (make it twice, one for left, one for right side seam!)

Last (but not least) let’s hem!  This is where your handstitch comes… in hand! Being a posh dress, I like to stitch a blind hem by hand on the main fabric, then a second blind hem for the lining too!

Serger-Pepper-Eriqua-Dress-sewing-free-pattern hem

Tip: remember to let the dress on a hanger for a day or more before hemming, so the fabric can “relax” and the hem will lay flat!

Now sit down with a cup of coffee, relax, and enjoy your little one jumping on her bed wearing her Eriqua dress, some ruffled leggings (pattern and tutorial coming soon) and dark HelloKitty-ed sunglasses!
I hope you liked my Eriqua Dress, if you sew one or more, please share some photos on the Serger Pepper Patterns FB group.

Serger-Pepper-Eriqua-Dress-sewing-free-pattern jumping

Serger-Pepper-Eriqua-Dress-sewing-free-pattern music

Serger-Pepper-Eriqua-Dress-sewing-free-pattern little dancer

Serger-Pepper-Eriqua-Dress-sewing-free-pattern love this dress




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About the Author:

Hi there! I love sewing, creating my own patterns and refashioning pre-loved clothes... If you love the same things, why not be friends? See you on Pinterest


  1. Amy Mayenmayendesigns October 21, 2013 at 03:12 - Reply

    This dress is a little work of art! I’ve shared it everywhere! Hugs!

    • Mamma Nene October 21, 2013 at 12:57 - Reply

      Thank you Amy, I’m so happy you like it… and I hope you’ll end sewing one!
      Thanks for the sharing, it means a lot for me <3

  2. […] MammaNene from Serger Pepper shares a free pattern for making her Eriqua Dress.  It’s a little girl’s sleeveless A-line dress with inverted pleats across the bodice.  Contrast bar tacks accent the pleated bodice.  The pattern will make a little girl’s size 5 dress.  If you need another size, you can make your own by altering a favorite sleeveless A-line dress pattern, using her free pattern as a guide for adding the pleats.  Go to Serger Pepper for the free pattern. […]

    • Using Analytics to find the answers:You need analytics to help you understand what’s happening on your site. To gain that information, you need some way to track the analytics. Since there are plenty of blogs with detailed information this is only an overview:

  3. Sharon October 22, 2013 at 20:03 - Reply

    That dress is so adorable! I wish my youngest child was a little bit younger so that I can make stuff for her. Mostly, when taking out my machine, I’m taking clothes in that are too large. Now, my kids are at that age (preteen & teen) where I can’t seem to figure out which items of clothing they like and wouldn’t dare try making. Of course, I know they must like mines since something is always missing from my closet.

  4. Pam @Threading My Way October 23, 2013 at 10:12 - Reply

    Love the simplicity of this dress combined with the pleats and the stitching is the icing on the cake… beautiful, Irene!!!

  5. Melissa October 23, 2013 at 15:54 - Reply

    So cute – love the contrast stitching. Pinned!

    • Mamma Nene October 23, 2013 at 20:53 - Reply

      Great, thank you Melissa 🙂
      It’s such an honor being pinned from you!!!

  6. cucicucicoo October 24, 2013 at 11:17 - Reply

    It’s beautiful, Irene! Great job! Out of curiosity, what software did you use to make the pattern file? Even that is beautiful! 🙂 Lisa

  7. Jenya October 24, 2013 at 11:57 - Reply

    Oh boy! Cuteness alert! I LOVE this dress!

  8. […] was sewing a new dress for LilPotato (PDF pattern to download for FREE !) while I needed to shorten a zipper… I bet most of my readers can do that but I’m sure […]

  9. […] As usual, I try to adapt my sewing projects to my necessities (and not vice versa), so it rarely happen that I sew something that I don’t truly need!  One other goal I achieved with this dress is to release my very first pattern and tutorial for a woman dress: it’s my first time working in a big PDF pattern, so I hope you’ll understand if something isn’t perfect: I’m planning to release some more FREE pattern soon, so any kind of feedback (again, please be patient!) will be more then appreciated! UPDATE: check my daughter’s Eriqua dress FREE pattern here! […]

  10. […] Dress Tutorial at Serger Pepper Blog […]

  11. Abby October 31, 2013 at 15:18 - Reply

    This is such a cute dress, and your little model is adorable!

  12. […] of you asked about the ruffled leggings LilPotato was wearing under the Eriqua dress (FREE pattern delivered to all newsletter subscriber’s email): there they are! You can […]

  13. anastasia November 10, 2013 at 12:26 - Reply

    So sweet dress,dear!!!Very nice tutorial!Well done!
    big hugs

  14. Annie November 14, 2013 at 22:19 - Reply

    Beautiful pleats work! Your model is so cute too!

  15. […] (hint: it’s a girl!), and it will be one more time for subscribers only (like I did for the Eriqua dress, that you can still download if you’re a subscriber)! Do not miss this opportunity, fill now […]

  16. […] related… you won’t miss any new tip, plus there’s a FREE pattern to download (my Eriqua Dress) and more are coming really […]

  17. […] Create the inverted box pleats and pin in place (eventually you can also baste in place by hand, like I did on The Eriqua Dress). […]

  18. […] Before going on with the tutorial… Would you like to sign up for SergerPepper’s weekly mail? There are two exclusive patterns: The Mary Skirt and The Eriqua Dress… […]

  19. […] that the better way to stay in touch and receive two exclusive and FREE patterns (The Eriqua Dress and The Mary Skirt), is to sign up for our Weekly […]

  20. […] do it with our Monday’s Newsletter you can have two (and counting) Exclusive FREE patterns: The Erika Dress and The Mary […]

  21. […] this box, I have two sewing patterns I share exclusively with my monday’s newsletter readers (The Eriqua Dress and The Mary Skirt) PLUS: you could suggest me what draw next… maybe a woman pattern? Let me […]

  22. Made with hugs and kisses January 19, 2014 at 01:47 - Reply

    Hi, I am in the midst of setting up a crafting community blog where I will be sharing tutorials that will help people learn to sew and craft. Would you mind if I featured this dress? All this would mean is I post about it sharing an image and a link back to your original post for readers to click through to. Thanks
    Hannah smith

    • Mamma Nene January 19, 2014 at 08:40 - Reply

      Obviously yes, Hannah, thank you!
      I think sometimes fate is strange… I answered to your contributors request 5 minutes ago (I read your newsletter and decided I had to try my chance!!)
      Good luck with your new blog, can’t wait to see it 🙂

  23. […] signing up to our Monday’s newsletter and you’ll receive two exclusive FREE patterns: The Eriqua Dress and The Mary […]

  24. […] signing up to our Monday’s newsletter and you’ll receive two exclusive FREE patterns: The Eriqua Dress and The Mary […]

  25. […] one I wore with my Mod Dress (FREE pattern available for download), matching to my daughter’s Eriqua Dress (one more FREE pattern) and her Self-Drafted Ruffled Leggings I shared last […]

  26. […] signing up to our Monday’s newsletter, where you’ll find two exclusive FREE patterns: The Eriqua Dress and The Mary […]

  27. […] signing up to our Monday’s newsletter and you’ll receive two exclusive FREE patterns: The Eriqua Dress and The Mary Skirt (PS: a third one is coming […]

  28. […] signing up to our Monday’s newsletter and you’ll receive two exclusive FREE patterns: The Eriqua Dress and The Mary […]

  29. […] signing up to our Monday’s newsletter and you’ll receive two exclusive FREE patterns: The Eriqua Dress and The Mary […]

  30. […] signing up to our Monday’s newsletter and you’ll receive two exclusive FREE patterns: The Eriqua Dress and The Mary […]

  31. Emily Thompson April 12, 2014 at 04:08 - Reply

    just gorgeous!! I want to make it with a light summer fabric and see how it works ;o) I just want wanted to let you know that I’ve put together a post called 20+ free sewing patterns for kids and this is part of it!! I’ve spread the word all around and I hope you will see some extra visits ;o) Emily

    • Mamma Nene April 13, 2014 at 00:07 - Reply

      Thanks Emily, it’s one of my favorite too 🙂
      Don’t forget to add some photos to Serger Pepper’s Flickr group board, if you’ll sew it, I’ll be more thn happy to see them 🙂

  32. […] Here are the ruffled leggings LilPotato was wearing under the Eriqua dress […]

  33. Cidys Marquez August 8, 2014 at 18:05 - Reply

    Hola, hace poco tiempo me suscribí a tu Blog. me gustaría obtener este patrón Gratis. la verdad me encanta, y en el tutorial lo explicas muy bien, me quiero animar a hacerlo. Gracias

  34. Laura Svaluto February 3, 2015 at 14:33 - Reply

    Bello! Sembra semplice ma d’effetto 🙂

  35. Inês February 27, 2015 at 16:25 - Reply

    just arrived!
    i’m from Portugal and i was looking for a pattern for winter dress to give to a little girl when i found your blog and this lovely tutorial.
    sooo preety !
    do you think i could do it with some princes sleeves?
    thank you so much

  36. Deedra October 26, 2015 at 03:22 - Reply

    Gorgeous little designer dresses – and it’s the love that counts! Yours spreads as an inspiration to others, so that they can experience the joy of creating beautiful things. If only these skills were taught to all young people these – there would be far fewer on antidepressants! You are a clever lady!

  37. Lina February 21, 2018 at 14:55 - Reply

    Hi Irene,
    I recently found your website and absolutely fell in love with the gorgeous Eriqua Dress <3
    I've signed up for your newsletter to get the pattern, but unfortunately I only ever received the "confirm subscription" e-mail. I confirmed but never got any other e-mails.
    Could you maybe send me the pattern directly? That would be so lovely!
    Thank you so much and have a nice day 🙂

    • Irene February 23, 2018 at 08:52 - Reply

      Hi Lina!
      I’ve just sent you an email… thanks for contacting me <3

  38. Linda Maillis March 13, 2018 at 09:32 - Reply

    I am having a hard time assembling this pattern for the Eriqua dress. Maybe a diagram could help please!

    • Irene March 16, 2018 at 14:50 - Reply

      Hi Linda!
      The diagram is already there, just scroll down the page and you’ll find it, under the “What you need” paragraph, where it says “See the pattern layout here: SergerPepper – The Eriqua Dress – size 5y0 ALL”… just click on the pink text and you’ll get your diagram!
      I hope this helps!
      Happy sewing,
      Irene // Serger Pepper Designs

  39. Sum October 8, 2018 at 21:13 - Reply

    Hi, this is a really cute dress and I really want to make it but when I download theand pattern, it is downloaded as one page in A4 size which cannot be right, right ? Could you help figure out why?

    • Irene January 9, 2019 at 15:51 - Reply

      You need to subscribe to our newsletter to get the actual size pattern…

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