April 9, 2009

Easter outfit!

So I've been having this wardrobe problem lately: I'm craving bright, springy colors, and my wardrobe isn't cooperating. Or, I should say, the weather isn't cooperating. We're having a rather cold spring-- and I'm not just saying that, I was looking at the weather.com page yesterday at work, and the high temperature was easily 20 degrees below the average for this month around here! Which, being a warm-weather loving girl who hates being cold and gets into such a state ridiculously easily, means I'm still stuck wearing my winter clothes. I haven't even been able to manage 3/4 sleeves too often yet! Sigh.

Anyway, since Easter is on Sunday and I had nothing to wear that fits my two requirements (warm enough that I won't get frostbite in my perpetually cold church building, but still something cheerful and springy), a refashion was definitely in order. (And perfect timing, too, since bathroom renovations in the house means that the pool table I usually cut out on is covered in stuff related to that, and I can't cut patterns!) So I took this hand-me-down that my mom made/passed on to me when she decided it was too frumpy and dresses aren't her thing anymore anyway....
(Yes, this was a two-layer dress!)

...and turned it into this, which I finished on Tuesday.
I borrowed the bodice (with a modified neckline) from Simplicity 7072, since I'd made it before and knew the fit. The skirt was actually the part that came first-- I cut the bottom off of the original overdress and draped it into a somewhat pleated skirt on the dummy. The original underdress on this one shows up as the band around the waist:

(Yeah, I know, it doesn't look like the fit on the waist is too great here.)

And this is that zipper I had that big fight with! Take that!
So what happened to the rest of that underdress, you may ask? Well, I turned it into a shrug...which isn't actually finished because it was kind of a fail with this dress. I made a shorter one because I didn't think I'd have enough fabric to make the shrug both longer and with longer sleeves. (I didn't.) But the empire-waist shrug with the regular-waist dress just isn't doing it for me. I may go back and finish this at some point....if I can figure out what else could possibly be worn with it!
So, since sleeveless dresses in cooler spring weather and an overly air-conditioned church still isn't a good idea for me, I spent the last two days turning this....
(white knit top banished to the refashion pile because it was just too short and a bit too see-through for my comfort)
into this.
(As modeled by my lovely dress form with the dress.)
It would have been such a simple fix--all I did was cut it down the middle, trim off the neckline, turn it under and stitch. Ok, so it was still a simple fix. It just took me longer because I decided to hand-sew the facing down. It's a very stretchy knit, and I figured the machine would probably just make it all stretched-out and ripply. Not to mention I pretty much had to stitch it right on the edge of the turned-under part, and thought hand-sewing would give me more control. So it's not perfect-- there's definitely some crooked stitches here and there. But at least it's not all stretched out. And the hand-sewing wasn't bad, actually-- it was kind of relaxing, surprisingly. I was originally going to add buttons and buttonholes too, but taking 2-3 inches out of the middle means it would just look like I was wearing a size smaller than I'm supposed to if I actually did button it. So I think I'm going to leave it.
So there you have it-- my almost completely recycled Easter outfit. The only thing I had to actually buy for this one was the lining-- the dress fabric would not have been good without it, a bit too see-through!


  1. Yay! So pretty! We felt 95-degree heat yesterday so I will try to send some your way in time for Easter. :)

  2. Oh, my gosh, who'd ever think that dress came from the first one? You're really amazing, kid. And you're going to look beautiful on Easter, no matter what the weather is.

  3. Wow--that's a great refashion! Very pretty.

  4. Awesome refashion work!!!!


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