When summertime comes and the temperatures rise, I feel the urge to break out my dresses (even though I am much more a jeans-and-T-shirt kind of woman during other seasons). For summer, I prefer knit dresses — they hug my body, forgiving any winter weight gain and don’t need ironing. It’s a win-win situation in my book! These free summer dress patterns made with knit fabric will get your wardrobe ready for summer.
6 easy & FREE summer dress patterns
At least one Little Black Dress must exist every woman’s closet. You can’t go wrong with this sleeveless beauty, made of a basic bodice sloper sewn on top of a circle skirt. Wear it with or without crinoline (to add volume to your lower half of the body and balance your bust), to double the fun. A black fabric would give the dress a timeless appeal, but I can see it in a knit fabric with a huge flowers print that screams “summer!”
2. Paula Dress
Here’s another popular shape for a knit summer dress: the faux wrap dress made of a crossover bodice on a half-circle skirt. The pleated waistband that adds a modern touch to a classic dress. For a fresh color block–inspired twist, try sewing the left front bodice in one color and the right one in a different one for a color.
3. 5-Minute Maxi Dress
While this is not technically a dress “pattern,” I think it’s really interesting, at least as for a last-minute date. I might try it in a plain color and with a lettuce hem to add little interest to the bottom. And what about cinching the waist with a belt to highlight the waist?
4. 15-minute Convertible Dress
Don’t have much time to whip up an outfit? Try this convertible little frock you can wear at least in 10 different ways. The designer also has a video tutorial showing all the steps and how to wear it. It is so simple that it’s almost unbelievable, and it is made using your own measurements (no pattern pieces are included). Beginner friendly!
5. Swing Dress
This fun mini-dress with a ’70s vinyl vibe may be worn as shown, but I would add something to (partially) cover legs or lengthen it at the hem for added modesty. What I like about the shape of this dress is how it hugs the upper curves of the body and freely hangs from them, hiding anything at waist and hip level.
6. Simple Wrap Dress
You can put this convertible infinity dress together in one afternoon. Since it uses just two yards of fabric, you may even decide to batch-sew two (or more) of them for a whole summer’s worth of dresses! It can be worn in 20 different ways, just wrapping it around your body following the pictures.
Many readers write me telling me they’re scared to sew knits, but they actually shouldn’t be. I always suggest starting with Linda Lee’s The Ultimate Guide to Sewing Knit Fabrics Craftsy class to learn all the secret and feeling the urge to stitch some knit fabric. (I even wrote a review of this class.)