Rainbow Princess Dress Tutorial

How to make a quick and easy rainbow dress - Rae Gun Ramblings

I am a big fan up upcycled shirt dresses. I’ve shared my own adult version as well as one for the kids. But today I’m sharing a remix for a rainbow princess version. What I love about these dresses is that they are SO fast and easy and this little tweak is just a couple more steps and just a few more minutes. So worth it.

Easy Rainbow Princess Dress Tutorial - Rae Gun Ramblings

I made this Rainbow Princess dress for L’s birthday. It was actually a surprise party. Funny enough she wanted a surprise party. Now just think for a second how reridiculoust is to give throw a 6 year old a surprise party. In a family where we love talking and planning birthday parties for months. Ha, it was a bit comical but in the end she was totally surprised and had a blast. It was so fun.

Rainbow Princess Dress Tutorial - Rae Gun Ramblings

I think this dress would be a great costume base, I can see a Chiquita Banana version or just throw a crown on top and use the right colors fabric and it could be so many different sorts of princesses. In fact you could use my Snow White Sleeve tutorial a navy tank top and yellow for the skirt and have a super easy  snow white!

Easy Rainbow dress tutorial - Rae Gun Ramblings

What You Need

  • Tank Top
  • Fabric for sleeves (about 5X10 inches for each color)
  • 1 Yard Top Skirt Fabric (My skirt length is 22 inches so 1 yard works if your need it longer than your fabric folded in half get 2 yards)
  • 1 Yard Bottom (same as above)

Rainbow Princess dress from a tank top - Rae Gun Ramblings

What to Do

  1. Measure how long you want the bodice to be and then add 1 inch for sewing and cut your tank top to that length.
  2. Cut your self some sleeve pieces. Mine are 10 inches long and then I curve one side. I wanted two layers of sleeves so I have the width on the two layer more shallow than the bottom ones.
  3. Finish the straight edge of the sleeve pieces. I did this by doing a rolled hem on my serger but you can just do a narrow hem.
  4. Gather the sleeves along the curved edge. I like to layer the two sleeve pieces and then gather them up as if they are one piece.
  5. Next using a stitch that can give a a little, like a 3-step zig zag sew the sleeves onto the tank top.
  6. To make the skirt measure how long you want it and trim the fabric to that length. Mine is 22 inches so I just cut along the fold for how the fabric came on the bolt. So for each skirt layer I have two 1 yard by 22 inch pieces.
  7. Sew the short ends together.
  8. For the top skirt cut the bottom edge off in an angle. Lay it over the bottom piece and see if you want to cut any more.
  9. Hem the skirt. I used a serger to do a rolled edge but you can use any hem you prefer.
  10. Now layer the two skirt pieces on top of each other and finish the edges with either an overlock stitch or zig zag.
  11. Treat both layers as one and gather the skirt. This is my favorite gathering technique.
  12. With right sides together pin the skirt to the bodice and sew to attach.
  13. Turn right side out and you’re good to go!

How to make a rainbow dress in just 1 hour - Rae Gun Ramblings

I really love how this turned out. I think it’s one of my favorite dresses that I have made for L and it’s just a bonus that it’s also one of the easiest!

DIY Rainbow Princess Dress - Rae Gun Ramblings

I kinda want to make myself one :)

DIY Rainbow Dress Tutorial - Rae Gun Ramblings

Let’s connect! You can also find me hanging out here.





  1. You are the best aunt EVER!!! That dress is sooo fabulous!! I’ve got a Craft Gossip post scheduled for this evening that links to your tutorial:

  2. It cracks me up that she wanted a surprise party haha! Kids are the best. The dress is so fun though. My girl insisted on being a “rainbow princess” for halloween last year and though I accommodated her by making a rainbow bimaa and puffy “cloud” skirt, it would have been a lot easier to use this tutorial :)

  3. I know this. a couple years old but I just found it love the dress but I have a question how to you cut top skirt layer do you cut the same as bottom on the fold sew together. Short ends then cut on an angle do I have to fold fabric again before I cut on an angle sorry it’s probably really easy and im making it complicated in my own mind im a very novice sewer and don’t get me wrong all your free patterns are great very cute stuff but some of us newbee need some more visuals maybe if ya take more pics it would help

    • If I understand your question right, I did cut the top layer on the fold so the short ends matched up perfectly BUT since you’re serging the edges (or you can hem them) anyways if they aren’t perfect you can just trim them up after you sew them together

  4. I get lost around step 6. I’m not sure if I’m just stupid or what… How do I make the skirt? I dont understand the “sew short ends together” , that just makes a tube. I don’t know. I know this is older but are there more pictures or a drawn pattern? :( I want to make it so bad but I don’t think I am smart enough.

  5. Kitty beitz says:

    Thanks so much for this tutorial. I love the dress. Im making 3 different sizes for our grandaughters. The youngest is the size you have here but when I make them bigger will there be an issre for the larger ones to fit over their heads. Just wondering? Thanks so much for your time and free pattern.
    with much gratitude.
    Nana Kitty

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