One of the things I love about fashion is things always come back in style. They may have minor tweaks and updates, but most things come back around. I love shopping at thrift and vintage stores because you can find so many great things. Often, they just need minor updates. For those of you that think, “I can’t sew!”, try rethinking. I actually began sewing women’s clothes by just updating things and my passion grew. Some updates are really not challenging. While this project is more involved, many just require quick fixes.
I began with this sad dress. But I saw something in it- something sassy and fresh. I knew this was the dress to be transformed into my romper.
(If you’re new to sewing, I recommend using a cotton or cotton blend. This was 100% silk and it’s not easy to sew with. So keep that in mind when you’re finding your garment to refashion.)
The first thing you need to do is put the dress on and measure to your natural waist line. Then add about 3 more inches and cut it there.
You will have the reamining skirt piece which we will make our shorts out of. Cut them off leaving them extra long. You won’t know how short you want this piece until the whole romper is done. I also saved the bottom piece of the skirt for a dress. So don’t throw away your scraps!
Ok. Now for the shorts part. If you’ve never done this before, you can do a little more research on it, look at a pattern or take a pair of shorts you already have. Lay them on top of the piece you have. We want this to be flowy and non-fitted, so keep that in mind. Make them larger than a fitted pair of shorts. Fold your skirt piece in half and lay out a pair of shorts and cut accordingly.
Here’s what you’ll have. Two pieces that look like this:
Sew each piece at the innerleg part.
Then sew up the middle seams together making it you shorts!
Now attach it to your top.
Here’s what we have at this point. It’s still pretty frumpy dumpy at this point, right?
It needs definition. Here’s your waist line where you attached the shorts and top.
Make a stitch all the way around the waist band, about 1/4 inch above the waistline.
This top had lining so I just made a little hole in that pocket and ran some elastic through. If yours doesn’t have lining, you can always just shirr it at the waist. (Look here on how to do that.)
How much better is this looking already?
Ok, now try the romper on. Figure out what length you want your shorts and hem them accordingly. The reason why we wait to hem them until this point is because the elastic in the center makes the romper a different length then before.
Now for just a couple more updates to keep it current. First, I cut off the collar. It was too business-y. If you do it carefully you can cut it right at the collarline and it won’t fray.
I thought these sleeves were boring and lacked interest.
I took these little ties that were on the dress and made little pickups for the sleeves.
Finally, I took my leftover skirt piece and made a tie for the waist.
And you are finally finished!
Today is a packing/cleaning day. So there will be no head shots of me
I love it with a black blazer!
Check this tutorial and other great posts over at MODE Bay Area.
Posted in Original Designs, refashions, women's clothing | 20 Comments »