Finding Dory Dress with New iBroidery Designs

Everyone loves Disney/Pixar’s Finding Dory. With your Brother embroidery machine, 4"x4" frame or larger
, you can delight children as they find Dory and her friends on their garments, pillowcases, and other accessories. In a flash, you can download this unlikely school of marine pals at Brother’s
. Each fits in a 4"x4" frame. With sewing pattern New Look #6219, view A, this dress shows Dory, Nemo, Baily and Hank swimming in a sea of blue. Ruffle waves on either side feature a Finding Dory print fabric.


image 1 panned finished Dory dress - crop top


Brother Disney embroidery machine
, 4"x4" frame or larger. THE Dream Machine
was used to make this dress.

Accessory feet:

Embroidery designs from
For back yoke: Sea Otter (FDR04)
, water and sun were extracted from retired Brother cards. For skirt front: Dory (FDR01)
, Nemo (FDR02)
, Hank the Octopus(FDR03)
, Bailey the Beluga Whale(FDR05)
  New Look pattern 6219Free Downloadable FREE Seashell Seaweed Design (EXE01_31)
for 5"x7" frame, edited. BE ADVISED: For this dress, the bottom border and top two sprigs of seaweed from the FREE Seashell Seaweed Design (EXE01_31) have been eliminated when you embroider in order to fit the 4"x4" frame. If those elements are included, the design is too tall to fit between the hem and the “waves.”


  • Pacesetter stabilizer SA5815
    medium weight adhesive tear away, Pacesetter stabilizer SA5810
    medium tearaway stabilizer, Pacesetter stabilizer SA541
    7"x7” square of water soluble stabilizer
  • embroidery threads
    , sewing thread in pastel blue and navy blue for construction, monofilament thread for yo-yo sun attachment
  • 7” zipper, hook and eye closure, 60” scrap ribbon ⅛” wide, 1-2” orange button, approximately 12” orange rick rack or other trim to simulate sun rays
  • New Look pattern #6219, view A, shown at right
NOTE: Directions and measurements are given for size 4 dress.


  • 3/4 yd. blue piqué for skirt front, yokes, yoke lining, straps
  • 1 yd. Finding Dory print fabric 44” wide for skirt back, ruffles, bias tubes
  • 7"x7” square yellow cotton for yo-yo trim


Cutting out: Skirt back, ruffles, and piping are cut from Finding Dory print fabric. Remaining pattern pieces are cut from blue pique. Pattern modifications: [caption id="attachment_1977" align="alignright" width="400"]skirt fold line moved Step 2: Pattern piece #4, center fold moved.[/caption] 1. Omit waistband. Do-it-yourself Finding Dory piping is used at the waist as well as along top of bodice. 2. Fold pattern piece #4, skirt front, 2.5” from fold line. This reduces front skirt width by 5” leaving a nearly flat canvas for embroideries. See photo at right. 3. Cut ruffles, pattern piece #6, width of Finding Dory fabric which is 44” wide. This allows a few extra inches to get the narrow hem started. 4. Align side of skirt back pattern piece next to side of already cut blue skirt front. Mark line for ruffles on each side of skirt front. This is for placement of bias tubing. [caption id="attachment_1978" align="alignleft" width="400"]wave lines drawn Fr_cropped Step 5: Wavy lines drawn, shown with flexible French curve.[/caption] 5. Draw waving lines from one side to the other with the use of a flexible French curve or draw by hand. See photo at left. 6. Mark fold line at bottom of skirt for ⅝” hem. This marked line helps when placing the embroidery designs. 7. Arrange skirt gathers near side seams. The skirt’s reduced width leaves very little excess to be gathered. Placing the few gathers within the inch next to each side seam gives a nice flat surface for the Finding Dory embroideries. [caption id="attachment_1983" align="alignright" width="94"] scan tubing_cropped Steps 9 & 10[/caption]

Finding Dory Bias Tubing

8. Cut 42” bias from Dory fabric, 1 ¼ ” wide. Approximately 13” are used for each of the front “waves.” Three 13” tubes may be made or one 42” tube can be cut into three lengths. 9. Press in half lengthwise, right sides together, rendering a piece ⅞” wide. 10. Insert ribbon along fold. Stitch very securely at top of fold. Note: Take care to keep ribbon snug against fold in order to avoid stitching into it as shown in photo at right. 11. Attach J foot. As shown in photo below, Engage the laser function on the Dream Machine and set width at 1.5. Select straight stitch #1-01. Set the straight stitch width at 1.5. [caption id="attachment_2019" align="alignleft" width="300"]laser icon - Marked Step 11: Laser icon, selected[/caption] 12. Align bias fold with right edge of J presser foot. Stitch ⅜” from fold, exactly on the laser. TIP: Stitch ½” from fold for first ½”. This leaves a wider opening for turning the tube right side out. Then angle stitching to meet laser at ⅜”. See this shown in Step 13 photo at right. [caption id="attachment_2025" align="alignright" width="94"]tubing cropped with TEXT Step 13[/caption] 13. Turn tube right side out by pulling ribbon tail. After tube is turned, cut away ribbon. 14. Press tube with seam at center. Apply glue stick to seamed side of bias tube. Press bias tubing in place over marked lines. 15. Attach open toe foot, SA 186. Select zig zag stitch #1-09, W 1.5, L 1.5. With navy thread, sew along outer edges of bias tubing, with zig stitching into the bias and zag stitching into the blue base fabric. 16. Repeat with other two waves.

Finding Dory Embroidery

Now let’s have some fun with machine embroidery! Front skirt panel w embroidery
There are many ways to accomplish the embroidery. Here are a few tips.
  • a. Use the largest hoop available for your machine.
  • b. Mark positions for EXE01_01 designs (seashell and seaweed) with templates.
  • c. Enable the scanning function
    on the Dream Machine. This will allow you to select the design and then use the stylus to drag and rotate it to the desired position.
  • d. Enlist that perky snowman sticker
    for placement, after noting the size of each design.
  • e. Use the trial feature to insure that the design you have placed does not overlap the waves.

Let’s do some embroidery.

1. Hoop medium weight adhesive tear away stabilizer
in chosen frame. The Quattro's
8"x12" frame will accommodate the embroideries in the lower two “waves.” That frame also fits THE Dream Machine. Alternatively, each design will fit in the 4"x4" frame while both Dory and Nemo together will fit in the 5"x7" frame. 2. Use one of the methods above or a printed template of EXE01_1. Print a second template with the design mirror imaged. Position these designs at the bottom of the skirt just a smidgen above the marked hemline and on either side of center. Reserve 4” at the center for Hank the Octopus whose design requires 3.5” width and 2.1” height. Mark design centers for placement. 3. Check measurement of design. Because you cannot print out a template of Disney embroideries, you can still get accurate placement by cutting a square the size of the complete design and placing that over the pattern piece. Use the trial feature to be certain. See photo below marked Step 5 where the Trial Feature button is noted. 4. Apply skirt area against sticky stabilizer in chosen frame. Float tearaway stabilizer under the frame. Embroider three designs below the bottom wave. Note that the designs must be rotated 90 degrees if the skirt is positioned horizontally, as shown below. [caption id="attachment_2031" align="alignright" width="800"]Scanning screen with embroidery Step 5: Scanned Skirt with Embroidery Designs shown on screen.
Also: Trial Feature icon noted.[/caption] 5. Scan the hooped skirt front with THE Dream Machine. After the skirt front is scanned, use your stylus to drag the design into position. The scanning feature is the most precise way to place the design accurately. One of my favorite features of THE Dream Machine
, the scanner is especially useful for the embroidery of Bailey, the Beluga Whale. That design must be rotated approximately 107 degrees (90 because of the position of the skirt + 17 degrees) so that Bailey will not overlap the waves. For other machines, use the Trial Feature to make certain the design doesn’t overlap the waves. I've noted the Trial Feature icon in the photo above so you know what to look for. Repeat the hooping and placement process with each of the other 5 designs. NOTE: The two sprigs of seaweed which were deleted from EXE01_01 were saved and scattered across the skirt. Tiny marks were made as placement for the sprigs. The designs were stitched during each hooping. 6. Place designs as shown on finished dress.
TIPS: a. Bailey, the Beluga Whale, has to be rotated approximately 107 degrees to fit between the waves. b. The Seaweed and Shells FREE design, EXE01_01, is positioned just above the marked ⅝” hemline. It is stitched as shown on the right side of the skirt, and mirrored on the left side. I chose more subdued colors so as not to compete with the bright embroideries. c. Hank, the Octopus, sits just above that same marked hemline. d. Remove embroidery from stabilizer and soak to remove the adhesive.
[caption id="attachment_2084" align="aligncenter" width="800"]image 1 panned finished Dory dress - crop top Step 7: The Sea Otter embroidery on back yoke.[/caption] 7. Embroider the Sea Otter on one back yoke. Combine Sea Otter (FDR04) with water and sun components from your design library or select them from iBroidery. The designs shown were taken from retired Brother cards. The back yoke is a very small area, so snug the individual designs together. Because you cannot print out a template of Disney designs, you can still get accurate placement by cutting a square the size of the complete design and placing that over the pattern piece. Use the trial function to be certain. 8. Hoop stabilizer in 4"x4" frame. Embroider Sea Otter design. 9. Remove all embroidery from stabilizer and soak to remove the adhesive. 10. Press flat when dry.

Skirt Ruffles

[caption id="attachment_2085" align="aligncenter" width="800"]Narrow hemmer Step 11: Narrow hemmer[/caption] 11. Hem both edges of each ruffle with narrow hemmer. NOTE: This is very easy for some people, but I am not some people. I needed more instruction. After viewing this YouTube video
and this one
, I learned several techniques which helped me conquer this useful foot. [caption id="attachment_2087" align="alignright" width="271"]gathering foot settings screen-crop Machine settings for the gathering foot.[/caption] Narrow hemming is a skill worth learning. Like riding a bike, it is easy, once you know how. 12. Gather each ruffle to measure 27”. Only 26” are needed for size 4, but it’s easier to have a little extra to work with. Use one of these methods: a. Gathering threads: straight stitch 3 rows of lengthened stitches. TEDIOUS but do-able! b. Ruffler attachment SA143: for help see this video.
NICE EVEN PLEATS c. Gathering foot SA177: for help see this video
. On my Dream Machine, the settings shown in the photo at the left rendered a 28” ruffle which was close enough for me. Remember, the ruffle was cut width of fabric (44”) rather than 40” as per the pattern piece.    
TIP #1: Gathering threads are placed 1” below hemmed top of ruffle. Again, the laser function can be used as in step #4. Another technique is to place painter’s tape 1” from the needle and guide the ruffle against the tape as you gather. TIP #2: Take care to leave a thread tail of approximately 5” at the beginning of the gathering row as well as at the end. [caption id="attachment_2092" align="aligncenter" width="800"]Gathering foot ruffle Gathering foot with lengthy thread tail.[/caption]


1. Make 1 ¾ yds. of piping from Finding Dory fabric.
TIP: Long ago in another place and time, a very well known sewing expert announced to her class (in which I was fortunately sitting) that fabric strips for piping do not need to be cut from bias. Only if the print of the fabric, such as gingham, would offer a design benefit, is bias required. The trick to using straight-of-grain piping is to make frequent clips (every ¼” or less) in areas which even suggest a curve. Those cuts need to be made perpendicular to the seam line and absolutely, positively right up to the stitching. I’ve used straight-of-grain piping for at least 30 years with no problems. All the piping on Dory’s dress is made that way.
[caption id="attachment_2100" align="alignright" width="259"]sidecutter screen settings Step 4: Side Cutter screen settings.[/caption] 2. Follow pattern instructions by joining side seams of front and back yokes. 3. Apply piping to top and bottom of bodice at waist. Continue with pattern instructions all the way to skirt hem.

Side Cutter

4. It's time to prepare to hem the skirt. Keep in mind, we've only got ⅝” allowed for the hem. Rather than turn that hem up as directed in the pattern instructions by folding the curved edge twice, the side cutter SA177 was used to finish the raw edge of the hemline. On THE Dream Machine, first you must select a stitch from the opening utility menu which has an S at the bottom of the stitch diagram. There are several from which to choose. I've shown you the settings I used for mine in the photo to the right. 5. This handy little accessory plays the part of a mini serger, rendering a clean edge which is not bulky. View this video
for clear instruction on its use. [caption id="attachment_2099" align="aligncenter" width="800"] sidecutter in action Step 5: Sidecutter in action.[/caption] This very handy little accessory gives a neat, clean finish with less bulk than a serger. [caption id="attachment_2098" align="aligncenter" width="800"]sidecutter result Side Cutter foot result.[/caption] 6. Attach hook and eye at top of zipper, inside or out. I love the look of this vintage orange hook and eye so it was sewn to the outside of the garment.

Yo-Yo Sun

Make a big, hot, yo-yo summer sun to shine over Dory and her friends. Here’s a quick and easy method. You will need a 7 ½” square of yellow fabric, a 7 ½” square of lt. weight water soluble stabilizer, 6” bowl or jar for a template, and a water soluble marker. [caption id="attachment_2107" align="aligncenter" width="800"]yo-yo supplies Supplies you'll need to make your yo-yo.[/caption] 1. Draw a 6” circle on right side of yellow fabric. I used a 6” wide cereal bowl. [caption id="attachment_2112" align="aligncenter" width="800"]draw circle Step 1: Draw circle.[/caption] 2. Place a piece of water soluble on marked yellow fabric. 3. Straight stitch directly on the drawn line with matching yellow thread. Dark thread was used in this image for better visibility. [caption id="attachment_2108" align="aligncenter" width="800"]stitched circle Step 3: Stitched Circle[/caption] 4. Trim approximately ¼-⅜” from seam line. [caption id="attachment_2109" align="aligncenter" width="800"]yo-yo circle trimmed Step 4: Yo-yo circle trimmed.[/caption] 5. Slit water soluble stabilizer and turn the 6” circle right side out, just like a pillow. 6. Press flat. Hurray! This leaves a perfect circle with no raw edges. 7. Remove as much stabilizer as possible. 8. Hand stitch with strong thread around the circle. Make deliciously big stitches, approximately ⅜”. Leave a long tail at the beginning and at the end. [caption id="attachment_2110" align="aligncenter" width="800"]hand stitched yo-yo circle Step 8: Hand stitched yo-yo circle[/caption] 9. Draw circle up by pulling both threads tightly together. Knot. [caption id="attachment_2111" align="aligncenter" width="800"]yo-yo complete Step 9: Yo-yo complete.[/caption] 10. Secure sun yoke at center front with a safety pin at the back of the yoke. 11. Slip rick rack or other trim under yo-yo edges. 12. Zig zag in place with monofilament thread. 13. Stitch large orange button in yo-yo center. Your Finding Dory dress with machine embroidery designs is finished! Finished Dory dress
  • New Look pattern is a product of Simplicity, Brother International Corporation makes no representations or warranties regarding such products.