For day 1 of Red & Black Week, a tutorial on turning a shapeless dress into a skirt.
Sack-shaped dresses (with big shoulder pads, of course!) were fashionable in the 1980's. (Remember Andi's prom dress from "Pretty in Pink"?) I see lots of these dresses in thrift stores. One such find was this red and black dress. The top half looks like a baggy t-shirt, but the bottom half has tiered ruffles and would make a cute skirt.
Oversized dresses can also be rescued by making them into skirts. If you find a size 16 dress but you're a size 6, turning it into a skirt may be easier than altering the entire dress. The technique described below will work on most loose-fitting, pullover-style (no zipper) dresses. The only notion you'll need is a piece of 3/4" wide elastic cut to your waist size.
First, determine where you want to cut the dress. Measure and mark a line. Typically, you'd measure up from the hem. Because my dress had tiers, I measured up (7") from the top of the top ruffle.
Next, measure and mark a piece of fabric from which you will make the waistband. This piece should be 4" wide and the same length as the waist opening. It's easiest to take it from right above the waist cutline.
|lines marked at 7" and 11" from the ruffle (11 - 7 = 4" for the waistband)|
Cut along the lines.
|middle piece will become the waistband|
If you took the waistband piece from right above the waist cutline, it will already be sewn together into a loop. Stitch over the original stitching line for the 2.5" and .5" seams, then snip out the original stitches to form the 1" opening.
|black thread shows my new stitches; original red stitches were then snipped to create the 1" opening|
Guide the elastic all the way around and back out through the opening so that both ends are sticking out of the waistband opening. Remove the safety pin and stitch the two ends of the elastic together. The elastic can then disappear into the waistband.
|make sure the elastic hasn't twisted inside the waistband before stitching ends together|