UPcycled: old dress to new dress

There’s a great little  thrift shop here in Charlottesville that’s located in the back of a baptist church- When you walk in, you are handed a plastic grocery bag.  It’s only $2 to fill the bag, which pretty much feels like you’re stealing.  I actually felt guilty stuffing my bag and then handing over a couple of bucks to the nice old church lady (who was so sweet- she kept bringing me little kid’s clothes to see if I liked them).  I wouldn’t say this place had the greatest selection of clothing, but I was really looking for things to repurpose anyway- I found a bunch of old vintage dresses that had some interesting prints (but not such interesting style).  This one in particular caught my eye:

Ain’t she purty???  I liked the stripes a lot, the fabric is nice and thin, and it moves easily.

It was really had to part with those sleeves…. but I decided to hack it up and just use the skirt. 

Basically, I cut off the skirt and attached it to a black T-shirt that I had.  I tried on the shirt, pulled the skirt up to where I thought the waist should be (I opted for a high-waisted dress here).  I marked where I thought the two should come together, then cut the bottom half of the shirt off.  I then did two rows of gathered stitches on the top edge of the skirt.  I stuffed the shirt into the skirt and lined up the raw edges (you end up sewing the right sides together).  I used my serger to keep the seam nice and neat inside.  Then, I pulled the shirt back out to reveal my new and improved dress.  No hemming required.

I had to make a little belt out of the top part of the old dress, because the seam where the shirt and skirt meet looked a little bumpy.  I put a couple of buttons (taken from the shoulder of the old dress) off to the side and sewed a couple of buttonholes.  Caroline suggested that maybe I add a couple more buttons to the other side so it looks symmetrical- what do you think?  I kind of like it off center, but maybe it would look better?  Do the buttons to the side look intentional or does it look like I need to adjust my belt? 

I’m very happy with my thrifty find, and my new dress.  It’s comfortable and it was pretty much free.  And I’m all about free these days!  Amen!


15 thoughts on “UPcycled: old dress to new dress

  1. I think the off-center buttons look on-purpose, not accidental. What a good eye you have, Chef! I am not a good re-imaginer…

  2. I LOVE the new dress! What a great design eye-I would buy the new dress in a heartbeat.

    PS. I usually like things totally symmetrical but I love the offset buttons.

  3. Stunning! Nice dress.

    Hey I have 2 fine ladies who want one of your bags. One is totally serious-I told her $35 would do. Call me 🙂

  4. Hi Erin,
    I love this repurpose! The skirt you made from that “vintage” dress looks so good. Personally, I love the off-center look of the buttons. I wouldn’t add more to make it symmetrical. I think it looks great as is. Impressive work!

  5. Oooooooooh it’s so cute ! I love it !
    Your buttons are the little tiny detail that mke it perfect !!! It’s great like that.
    Thanks for this inspiration moment !
    Have a good week-end 😉

  6. Love how you re-purposed the dress! You have a great eye to come up with that! Wish I did!

    I love how you added the belt with the offset buttons, completes the dress.

    Thanks for the inspiration!

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