‘Cause you’re never too old for a pinafore dress…

(So excited to be finally blogging this one!)

A couple of months ago I got the opportunity to pattern test the new Tilly and the Buttons pattern – an adorable pinafore dress called Cleo. It was perfect timing when I got that email as literally the day beforehand I was daydreaming about making myself a pinafore dress… Fate was definitely working in my favour!

This is another one of those simple but effective patterns. A really great quick project with a nice end result, you know? The instructions show you how to make a pinafore style button closure and a dungaree buckle style as well as coming in 2 lengths for either a mini or midi version. I, of course, opted for the mini version with pinafore buttons. 

I made mine with a navy blue ponte jersey with a white grid print with gold buttons. 


(The pattern has been changed slightly since I made this one – the straps are a bit wider now as is the front bodice panel and the hems are a little longer than shown.)

I love this dress (despite my rubbish pattern matching – I really tried though!). Mostly because I can actually get it to fit me unlike every single RTW pinafore dress I’ve ever tried on… I’ve got a very short torso so everything is always a little too long in the shops. This is definitely one of the reasons why I love making my own clothes!

I’ve already got plans for a black needlecord version of Cleo next!


  1. For some reason I think we’re the same height? (5.3 and a half???) did you shorten the pattern? I’m a bit too lazy to toile and I’m afraid I’ll take too much off! Thanks x

    1. I’m 5ft2 so you’re pretty close! I didn’t shorten anything but this was the sample pattern not the finished version. The finished version has been lengthened by 4cm at the hem I believe, so if you’re happy with how the body looks on me, I’d cut it as is and then trim any extra of the hem if you want it shorter.

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