Normally on Tuesday’s I have been doing what I have dubbed Trashformation-Tuesdays, but I actually have a couple outfits that I have been wanting to write about for awhile and just finally got after pictures for it. So not wanting to get behind I thought I would post one today. This dress was actually my very first refashion of this year. I had decided before I started it that I was going to create this blog, and this dress was my guinea pig.
This dress was given to me by one of my best friends, it was actually her mother’s dress. After her mother passed away I was helping her clean out her closet and actually found a handful of dresses that I loved and wanted to refashion. She happily gave them to me knowing that I would give them a loving new life. I loved the blue gingham of this dress which is a great start to a 50’s inspired dress.
Now I have mentioned it before, but vintage reproduction clothes are actually pretty expensive, well at least to expensive for me. I really liked this dress from Pinup Girl clothing, but with a $160 price tag, it’s on sale for $56 now, it was to high for me. But I knew that I could use this gingham dress to create my own.
The first thing that I did was separate the skirt from the bodice, and remove the solder pads. The next thing I did was to take it in on the sides, and accentuate the already created darts for a better fit.
Then I gathered the skirt with a Basting Stitch to gather it and then I reattached it to the bodice. Before I did that though I took a couple inches off from the top of the dress, that way I would save the original bottom hem of the dress. Now I attached it on the bodice where my natural waist fell instead of below it. This was actually the first time I successfully did this, last time I took a dress off the bodice I could not figure out how to reattach it correctly; but I’ll get into that project at another date.
Sewing word of the day: Basting Stitch– A basting stitch is a temporary stitch that’s purpose is to gather material. Set your stitch length at 5, or the longest stitch, and then straight stitch the material you want gathered. Do not backstitch. Once you get to the end and disconnect it from your machine, grab one of the strings and pull, which will gather the material. This is useful when two pieces are different sizes (like a small bodice and wide skirt).
Now that it was fitting better I started making the peter pan collar. So this was my first ever attempt at making them, and though they turned out ok this is not the way to do them. So I will not go in depth on how I did them.
The material I used was actually an old stained work shirt, but I thought the color of it was perfect, so I cut out pieces that were not damaged.
I used a template I made and cut out four pieces, I sewed two pieces right side together and left a hole in the corner so I could turn it right side out. I then hand sewed it shut. Since I didn’t do the collar right, I did my best to attach it with a hidden stitch to the top of the dress.
I also decided last minute to remove the sleeves all together. The last thing I did was create a sash with a bow out of the same material for my waist. I didn’t attach it to my dress, instead I used these snap buttons to attach it around my waist.
I knew the perfect event to wear my very 50’s dress to, which was to watch my friend Sean perform in his play about Buddy Holly. The show was amazing and my friend Sean was the perfect Buddy Holly.
My dress fit in so well with the show that afterwards when everyone went into the lobby to talk to the cast, I had a woman tell me I “did a great job in the show!” I paired the dress with a very long petti-skirt, and Barbie bangs with a high pony to complete the look. I even got to take pictures on the set.
Let me Know what you guys think, till next time!