Sunday, March 17, 2013

I turned two dresses into skirts.

I had these two dresses sitting in my closet. Well, one of them was actually in a sewing basket all folded up. Allow me to clarify something: I do not like strapless dresses. 

One, I have nothing with which to hold up said strapless dress. 

Two, they create these weird indentations above my chest (or lack thereof.)  I think they serve as a reminder of how not well endowed I am. 

Three, it is not cute to be constantly pulling up a dress or top, which is why I decided against a strapless wedding dress. I had one encounter with a strapless dress for prom one year. I was so ill equipped to wear this dress that I had to be velcroed into it, like 1/4" thick velcro strapped into that thing, and it still kept falling down. 

Anyway, I knew I would never wear these dresses as dresses, but I could part with neither the lovely black and white striped silk nor the blue and white striped seersucker fabrics. Finally, after allowing these dresses to sit around unworn for YEARS, I decided to bite the bullet and make skirts. If the mission failed, I really would have lost nothing since I wasn't wearing them anyway.

I went on a hunt and found this tutorial that didn't require removing the zipper in order to fashion a skirt. 

She does a fine job of instructing, so I'm not going to tell you how to do it. I will tell you a few tips/notes/things I learned during the process.

1. Try on the dress first and zip it up to where you want it to be as a skirt. Make sure it would look normal; otherwise, this dress might not work for your purposes. 

2. I have no idea how this process works on non-zippered (haven't taken that venture yet) or non-strapless dresses. 

3. If you have two layers to the dress, make sure that, after you chop off the top, you sew the layers back together again. (I made this mistake, and it was not fun to fix.) 

4. If your seams aren't perfect, just wear a wide belt over the top and no one will know. Muahaha. 
A good "seamstress" is even better at hiding her mistakes. 

Here is a "before" shot of the seersucker dress. I didn't put it on because I couldn't actually zip it up over my ribcage, so I took the before shot while it was on a hanger. 

Before (Seersucker "dress"):
The top felt all crinkly. No me gusta.

After (seersucker skirt):

My "sort of" before picture of the striped silk dress:
You can see the top of the dress poking through the shirt. The problem? You can see the dress straight through the shirt. Plus, the top was still uncomfortable.

After (striped silk skirt):

One of my attempts to prevent myself from shopping is to refashion my unworn clothes. 
I think these two attempts were successful, and now I've been bitten by the sewing bug!
Do you have a favorite? If you think they look horrible, don't tell me. I want to float on my "I sewed something that's not falling off of me" cloud for awhile longer.


  1. I think you did a wonderful job! Now you've got the hang of it, and there'll be no stopping you! There's a local fabric shop here, privately owned, and they do classes, and such on the weekends. Mainly quilting, but they always are quick to offer help with a problem. They've saved me a time or two!

  2. you are going to get so much use out of those new skirts! the first one is my favorite - it'll be great for summer.

  3. I'm not a huge fan of strapless either. The skirts look great :)


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