Birgitta Helmersson ZW Gather Dress PDF

Birgitta Helmersson


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Buy the ZW Gather Dress sewing pattern from Birgitta Helmersson. This is an oversized dress with a dropped shoulder, gathered skirt, side pockets and full length button placket with buttons and buttonholes. It can be worn as a dress or an open jacket. The skirt seam is designed to sit over the bust. The lengths of the bodice and skirt are easily adjustable to your preference. The width of the garment is variable depending on the fabric width you use. It comes with two simple hack options, one of which does not require buttons or buttonholes.


Zero waste pattern cutting is a bit like a puzzle. It is a method of pattern drafting where you utilise a length of fabric end to end by strategically planning your pattern pieces so that everything is used. This pattern does not require printing large pattern pieces. Instead, you draw your pattern pieces directly onto your fabric with the aid of a cutting plan and small templates. This method has several advantages:

1. More flexibility. This method allows for easy changes such as using different fabric widths and making simple fit and design changes yourself. Using patterns that fit into a zero waste square or rectangular block is a very efficient way to work. It means that it is easier to patchwork together remnants or use leftover fabrics you already have lying around.

2. An easy way to learn to self draft your own patterns. Working this way will help you to start building a toolbox of skills, and you will learn an alternative method of self drafting which is super easy for beginners to understand.

3. Less fabric and paper waste!

NOTE: With the exception of some small templates, this zero waste pattern has no pattern pieces. You will draw the pattern directly onto your fabric by following the step-by-step instructions in the pattern booklet and using small templates which you can print easily on your home printer.

This sewing pattern is available to buy in the following format:

– PDF (available to download immediately after purchase). What is a PDF?

Suggested fabrics: Ideal in a woven linen or cotton with a weight of approx. 150 – 200 gsm. Choose something with a bit of drape and something that is not too thick as the gathers can add a lot of fullness.

Fabric requirements: 

Size One: 125 – 155 cm (49″ – 61″) wide fabric: 260 cm (102″ or approx. 2.85 yd).

Size Two: 110 – 145 cm (43″ – 57″) wide fabric: 394.5 cm (156″ or approx. 4.35 yd).

Sizing: Suitable for a bust measurement of up to 156 cm (61″).

This is an oversized ‘one size’ style that comes with two pattern layouts (Size One and Size Two). Choose which layout to use based on your bust measurement and fabric width. Please check the designer’s size chart and finished garment measurements.

Note that due to the zero waste nature of the pattern, the design features are slightly different for the two layouts.

Notions: 9 buttons, approx. 12 mm (1/2″); lightweight fusing for the neck band (optional, only recommended for very fine fabrics).

Additional tools: Chalk or dissolvable pen; long straight ruler or right angle ruler.

PDF pattern includes: Instruction booklet; A4/US letter print-at-home templates (1 page for Size 1, 1 page for Size 2). With the exception of some small templates, this zero waste pattern has no pattern pieces.

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Additional information


Cottons, Linen

Make time

All day

Sewing level

Confident Beginner, Intermediate


UK 6 / US 2 / EU 34, UK 8 / US 4 / EU 36, UK 10 / US 6 / EU 38, UK 12 / US 8 / EU 40, UK 14 / US 10 / EU 42, UK 16 / US 12 / EU 44, UK 18 / US 14 / EU 46, UK 20 / US 16 / EU 48, UK 22 / US 18 / EU 50, UK 24 / US 20 / EU 52

Pattern format


PDF Printing

1 page (templates)

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