Vintage Dress Refashioned/ Upcycled to Shirt and Skirt

I inherited a vintage floor-length dress from my mom when she passed away in April 2015. I've had this dress in my possession for months, not knowing what to do with it. It was in colors and a pattern I love, and it fit. But, it was way too long, and not practical for my life. 


Oh, what to do.... I trawled Pinterest for ideas, and I came upon this photo, but with no instructions. Tie-dyed Denim Skirt

But, I had my inspiration, and I knew what to do with my dress. I decided to honor my mom, and update the dress to fit my lifestyle.... separates... a top and a skirt.

Step 1: Gather the Materials
Step 1 is pretty simple... gather your supplies: Dress, jeans, pins, scissors, color-matching thread, iron, ironing board, dressmaker's dummy.

I selected the button-fly jeans because I wanted to have a different type of denim skirt. I've seen a lot of them with zipper-fly fronts, and the skirt material just slapped on the bottom. I didn't want that; I wanted any easy transition with a completely buttoned front. I already had this pair for many years, and I have been losing weight, so they were starting to get loose.

Step 2: Cut the dress and make the top
I selected a length just below my butt, and cut the dress apart into a top and bottom, with my pinking shears. No unraveling allowed here. Then, I rolled up the hem at 1/8", pinned, and ironed it. I sewed the hem and repeated the process.

The shirt is now done, and ready to wear either by itself or with the skirt.

Step 3: Cut the jeans and pin the skirt together
The next step was a little bit more challenging. I cut the jeans just below the base of the zipper. (Save the legs for another project.) Then, I lined up tie-dyed dress bottom with the jeans.... I had to line those buttons up and the side seams up. The bottom of the cut-off dress already had sexy side slits and a bottom hem. Score on those details! I also had to make sure that bottom hem was nice and straight.... that dressmaker's dummy comes in very handy here.

Step 4: Sewing it all together
This step is pretty straightforward. I had to shorten the pockets, because I could see the "white spots" when I tried on the dress after pinning it. Then, I sewed the dress bottom to the jeans. I trimmed off the excess leftover dress fabric with the pinking shears and sewed just over that raw edge to prevent unraveling.




Then, I turned the dress right-side out and top-stitched it twice. I had to really make it durable.

Step 5: Wear and enjoy
Here we are at the last step: wear and enjoy. Remember Mom fondly. These can be worn mix and match. Separately or together.




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