Collage Gather Top Dress Hack


Simple patterns mean simple hacks and this one couldn't be easier. Turn our Collage Gather Top into an easy to wear summer dress. If you've never hacked a pattern before this is a great place to start.




Collage Gather Top



Matchy Matchy Sewing Club Linen Fabric


Step 1 

Add equal lengths to to following pattern pieces:

  1. The Front Center Panel
  2. The Back Center Panel
  3. The Gathered Panels

You can add anywhere between 13 inches (33.2 cm) to 15 inches (38.1 cm) in length depending on where you want you dress to land. I am 5" tall and I like my dresses short so I found that 13 inches works best for me.

If you are not sure what length will work for you start with 15 inches, you can always trim down later. For a maxi length dress you can start with adding about 30 inches of length.

Step 2

Cut out all pattern pieces as normal replacing the front center panel, back center panel and all gathered panels with your new adjusted pieces.

Step 3

Sew your dress following the same instructions provided with your Collage Gather Top Sewing Pattern.

Alternate Hem Width

I like my dresses to have a wider hem so when hemming I turn up the hem by 1/2" and then by another 1 1/2". Remember to take this into account when adding length on your pattern pieces. I find that 13"-15" is plenty even for this wide hem detail.

Alternate Sleeve

I also like omitting the cuff when making the dress version. I find it more modern and less fussy. To do this, do not cut the cuff pieces of the pattern. Instead fold under the raw edge of your sleeve once by 1/4" and again by another 1/4". Edge stitch and repeat for other sleeve (It's just like hemming the bottom of your shirt or dress but on the sleeve instead). Try this sleeve finishing method on the Collage Gather Top as well you'll see it gives a totally different look.


A Note on Sizing

I have found that many people can wear more than one size. It really comes down to how you prefer your dress or top to fit. You'll see that in the first set of photos Chelsea is wearing a size XS and the dress is more fitted on her. In the second set of photos Chelsea is wearing a size M which is a looser fit. Both look great on her but each provides a different look. I'm wearing an XXS but I can also wear a XS or a S. 

Can't wait to see how you hack your Collage Gather Top!

The Sewing Club is about sharing and supporting. Please share your thoughts, ideas or tips in the comments. We are ready to learn as much as we can from each other. Happy sewing!


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The length of the dress is shorter in front than in back. The pleating of the side piece is not straight because of my chest which is not big. Is it normal?
Matchy Matchy Sewing Club replied:
Hi! The dress is the same length in the front and the back. The shoulder pattern pieces are longer in the back to accommodate for a front shoulder adjustment so the neckline does not pull backward during wear. The overall length of the garment evens out once you sew up the side seams. If you are having trouble just send us an email and we can help troubleshoot! <>.

Manon Barrette

If you wanted to extend the sleeves to make them 3/4 length, would a gusset be prudent?

Mary Schweikher

For the collage gather top pattern, is it possible to know the rectangular size for the gather piece? That way I can save paper & won’t need to be taping pieces together to get a rectangular piece. Hope to hear from someone who had made this before.
Matchy Matchy Sewing Club replied:
Hi Nita,

Here are the measurements for the Gathered Panel piece, depending on the size you are making: XXS — 11.5 × 11″ XS — 11.75 × 11″ S — 12 × 11″ M — 12.25 × 11″ L — 12.5 × 11″ XL — 13 × 11″ 2XL — 13.5 × 11″ 3XL — 14 × 11″ 4XL — 14.5 × 11″ 5XL— 15 × 11″ 6XL — 15.5 × 11”



Non si riesce a stampare o scaricare il modello….

Silvana Lanza

About how much extra fabric will I need to hack the original pattern?
Matchy Matchy Sewing Club replied:
Hi Molly, You will need 3/4 to 1 yard extra fabric depending on your size. Thanks!

Molly Davidson

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