Sunday, February 23, 2014

How To Redesign a Dress

I was fortunate enough to inherit a lot of my grandma's clothes when she passed away a few years ago.  Most people may think, " you want to wear your grandma's clothes?"  Yes!!  This woman had extreme style and class.  I never her saw her not put together...even when she was working outside in the yard!  (And yes, I got some of the cool gardening clothes, too.)  This particular dress was one she wore in the late 80's early 90's, I believe.  I LOVE the lace and floral print and the unexpected color combination!  I had a vision for making this pretty, flowy dress a little more fitted so that I would be able to wear it all the time.   This could apply to any dress that needs a little tweaking.  This is how I did it:

I chose a dress that I already had and used that as kind of a pattern for the top and the length.

I left an extra inch or so at the bottom because I wanted the length to be a little longer, and to allow extra fabric for hemming.

Then I cut off the excess fabric from the length.

Using the top of the dress as my guide, I cut around the edge leaving 1/2" of extra fabric all the way around the edge of the top and stopping where the waistline began.

I then flipped the dress inside out, connected the armpit and the waistline using pins as my guide.  and then sewing in a straight line through all layers from the armpit to the waistline.  I then trimmed the excess fabric to 1/4".

Next, I ironed around the armhole edges folding down 1/4", and then another 1/4" and sewed 1/8" seam all the way around on both armholes.

Doing the same pressing method of 1/4", and then another 1/4", I sewed both the lining and the lace hems of the bottom of the dress.

Using the extra fabric that I had  cut away from the length, I folded and hemmed at 2 1/2" sash to go around the waist.

I like to finish the edges at an angle so they look like a ribbon.

Here is the finished product!!  I love how twirly this dress is!  It looks like a vintage inspired piece that I would buy, but this one happens to be priceless!  I like to think that my grandma had a hand in helping me make this little beauty.  I hope you enjoyed this tutorial, I would love to see what kind of dress redesigns you come up with!!

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