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Friday, 13 January 2017

Sewing Conversions: Turning A Skirt Into A Dress

Having seen what I did with the sewing conversion in the previous blog, my mom handed me a skirt from her wardrobe that she no longer wore. As my niece was already present to fit and model the skirt I had made, it followed quite naturally that this newly arrived skirt would also be converted into an item of clothing to fit her. We draped it this way and that and finally agreed upon a dress that we both liked. I walk you through the steps of converting an existing skirt into a girl's dress in today's blog.


This is the skirt I had to start with. I decided to use it as is, but to simply add stuff to it, rather than taking anything away.


I cut two coordinating strips of satin to make shoulder straps from.


My niece loved this shiny fabric, but had no idea how we could use it. I cut two mock sleeves from it, deciding to keep the use of this a secret with which to surprise her when it was done.


I cut two lengths of elastic to fit around her chest, although as I was making the dress, I realized that I would only need to use one of these.


I sewed the ends of the elastic together.


I divided the elastic into quarters, as well as the waist of the skirt.


I then pinned the quarter markings on the elastic to those on the skirt. (Here I still believed I would need to use both lengths of elastic.


It was time to sew the elastic to the skirt. I need both hands to stretch the elastic with, and can't show you a photo of me doing this. Basically it means that you will pull the elastic to match the fabric as you sew.


I sewed two stitch lines onto the elastic. This is where I finally realized, upon my niece fitting it, that adding a second elastic would be both uncomfortable to wear, as well as being unnecessary.


I found the centers of the strap as well as the mock sleeve and lined them up.


I then folded the sleeve in to make sure it does not get caught in the seam when I start sewing.


I then folded the strap into a tube with one edge of the sleeve caught in between the two layers of fabric.


Sew the tube.


Pull the fabric right side out.


This is what it looks like when pulled through.


By folding it, the added piece of fabric forms a mock sleeve on the strap. I sewed the other strap the same way and ironed both flat.


Once again fitting the dress on my niece, I pin the straps to the dress to make sure they are the required length.


Sew the straps onto the dress.


With that, the dress is finished.


I could not get my niece out of the dress again after the final fitting. She was very happy and kept commenting on how freely the dress moves and how the sleeves sparkled in the light. That spells success at age 10!


Marietjie Uys (Miekie) is a published author. You can buy the books here:
You can purchase Designs By Miekie 1 here.
Jy kan Kom Ons Teken en Verf Tuinstories hier koop.
Jy kan Kom Ons Kleur Tuinstories In hier koop.
Jy kan Tuinstories hier koop.
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