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Molly's Sketchbook: Embroidered Cotton Jumper 

Last fall I espoused the simplicity and versatility of the huipil with my Embroidered Denim Jumper. Its timeless shape is easy to sew and even easier to wear, but my favorite part of the huipil is, of course, its unique and beautiful hand embroidered yoke.

This summer I wanted to make one for my year-old daughter. There is no better warm weather outfit, and there’s no one I’d rather sew for than her! For Lupe’s dress I used breezy Kona Cotton in bright white and adorned the neckline with playful zig zag embroidery in a candy-colored rainbow of DMC floss.

I can’t wait to put little Lupe in this crisp summery Embroidered Cotton Jumper! It’s classic and one-of-a-kind, just like her! --Molly

The Materials

To make one 6-month or 12-month sized jumper you will need: 
You will also need:

The Pattern

Pattern Notes

  • The pattern below will show you how to make the jumper from start to finish, but for even more details and photos please see my previous Embroidered Denim Jumper project here.
  • All the embroidery is done using three strands of the DMC floss.


For the 6-month size cut:

  • A  rectangle 12 inches wide by 13 inches tall. This is the Bodice.
  • Two rectangles 14 inches wide by 12 1/2 inches tall. These are the Skirt Pieces. 

For the 12-month size cut: 

  • A  rectangle 14 inches wide by 15 inches tall. This is the Bodice.
  • Two rectangles 16 inches wide by 14 1/2 inches tall. These are the Skirt Pieces.

Embroidering the Neck

Fold the Bodice in half width-wise so that the shorter sides meet each other and press. Mark the center of the folded top edge.

Center and trace the Neck Template below the folded edge, as shown above.

Cut along the marked line to cut out the neck. 

The cut neck edge will be finished with a rolled hem and secured with a blanket stitch.  

Roll the cut edge of the neck approximately 1/4 inch towards the wrong side of the bodice. Using the floss color 892, blanket stitch this fold down. The stitches should be approximately 1/4 inch long and 1/4 inch apart. For a detailed description of how to do this please see my Embroidered Denim Jumper project here.

To start the diagonal neck embroidery, thread an 18-inch length of floss color 3706 and tie a knot at the end. Pull the thread from the wrong side through to the right side, 1/4 inch directly below the end of one of the blanket stitches. Then, inserting the needle into the bottom tip of the next blanket stitch to the right, exit the needle 1/4 inch directly below that. This will create a diagonally slanting stitch as shown above and below.

Sew around the entire neck in this manner.

For the next layer of embroidery you will be doing the same stitch, but in the opposite direction. So, using floss color 967, pull the thread from the wrong side to the right side 1/4 inch directly below the end of one of the previous diagonal stitches. Then, inserting the needle into the bottom tip of the next blanket stitch to the left, exit the needle 1/4 inch directly below that. 

Sew around the entire neck opening in this manner.

Sew one time around with each of the remaining embroidery floss colors in this manner, alternating the diagonal lean of the stitches from right to left.

Starting at the blanket-stitched neck edge and working out, the color order of my neck embroidery is 892, 3706, 967, 307, 3024, and 3846.


Note: For a more step by step pictures of this process please see my previous Embroidered Denim Jumper project here!

For the 6-month size: Make two marks on a long edge of both Skirt Pieces, 5 inches from the left and right sides. This will leave you with a 4-inch area in the center of what-is-now the top side. 

For the 12-month size: Make two marks on a long edge of both Skirt Pieces, 6 inches from the left and right sides. This will leave you with a 4-inch area in the center of the top side.

Using a wide basting stitch and a contrasting thread, sew across this 4-inch area with a 1/4-inch seam allowance. Back stitch at the beginning of the row, but not at the end. Instead of backstitching, leave a long tail of thread. This is your first row of gathering stitches.

Sew the next row of gathering stitches 1/2 inch below the first row. Start at the opposite end of the 4-inch center area. Again, backstitch at the beginning but not at the end of this row, and leave a long tail.

Now pull on the tails of thread so that the Skirt Piece gathers in the middle. Gather it in until the Skirt becomes the same width as the Bodice.

Repeat for the second Skirt Piece.

Open the Bodice and pin the gathered edges of the Skirt Pieces to opposite bottom sides of the Bodice, right sides together. 

Using the matching thread sew the Skirt to the Bodice with a 1/2-inch seam allowance. Rip out the gathering stitches. Zig zag stitch across the raw edges of the seam to finish the edges. 

Press the seam allowance flat towards the bodice and then sew the allowances to the bodice by topstitching across the bottom edge of the bodice just above the seam.

Turn the jumper wrong sides facing out. Starting 1-inch above the bodice seam pin the left and right raw sides together. Stop pinning 3 inches above the bottom of the Skirt for the 6 month size and 5-inches above the bottom of the Skirt for the 12 month size.

Sew the sides together along the pinned sides with a 1-inch seam allowance, starting and stopping at the first and last pins. This will leave the sleeve area of the Bodice and the bottom of the Skirt unsewn.

Separate the two sides of the seam allowance and press them open, with a 1-inch allowance towards the wrong side of the fabric. When you arrive at the unsewn portions continue pressing the fabric 1-inch towards the wrong side thus leaving those sections open and giving them a folded edge.

Fold the seam allowance 1/2 inch under itself to hide the raw edges all along the entire length of the sides. Press and pin the folds in place, as shown above.

Using floss color 892, sew down these folds using a slip stitch, just as you would a quilt binding. Please see the previous story for step by step instructions and pictures

Press the bottom edges 1/2-inch towards the wrong sides twice and pin the folds in place.

Using a slip stitch sew the bottom hems down, and then turn the jumper right sides out and press it flat.

Reader Comments (15)

Simplicity is so beautiful. I love this! I have two boys, but the next little girl we know who has a birthday, is getting one of these. :)
June 13, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterkristin
Man I want one for myself! Love the colors. I need to finish my unfinished projects so that I can start sewing something.
June 13, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterKnitting with Olof
I would love it in adult size!!

June 13, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterDanielle
Can't wait to see her in this sweet little dress.
June 13, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJosie
I love the dress but white for a baby? There is no way it would survive the first wearing without copious amounts a bleach. Perhaps the same dress in a darker color?
June 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJessica
Would you please post a photo of it on a child? I'd love to see the fit and lay of it! So pretty.
June 14, 2013 | Unregistered Commenteragbear
I would love to see this as a tunic top in adult size as well!!
June 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLeslie
I love the embroidered neckline on this! So beautiful against the white.
June 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterAlexandrea
Just so effective. Love it! xo
June 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterHannapat
Adorable! My teen daughter, who's learning to sew, wants to stitch the top for herself, and I'll embroider. A good beginner sewing project!
June 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJane
Ohhh, I always forget 'jumper' means something different over there. I was expecting an embroidered sweater.
June 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterPaprika
I had to laugh at myself when I clicked on the link... I always forget "jumper" means something different in the US. A "jumper" in Australia is a warm, pullover for cool weather, often made of wool. So, the part of the post that says, "this jumper is perfect for warmer weather" really tickled me!

Gorgeous pattern. I would like one for myself!
June 17, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterDapple & Grey
Please tell me, if I want to make a little larger size, is there some sort of formula, like for a 2T. Do you add a few inches length and a little width? This is too cute!!!!
June 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterMarsha
Hi Marsha-

You can make this in any size you like with a little tweaking. Please see my response to "Amanda" in the comments section of my previous Denim Embroidered Jumper pattern for a loose formula:

Thanks for your question!
June 25, 2013 | Registered Commenterpurl bee
I love this pattern! Here is our version - we made them a bit longer and used a bright vintage plaid. Our girls wear them all the time :
July 8, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJeanne Rondeau

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