I am actually the black sheep of our crafting family. I cross-stitch but have never learned any more about crocheting than making a simple chain. :-) I have done other projects here and there (some simple folksy painting on decorations, etc) but I am no where near the skill level of my family. So I'm happy to report I've stepped up to the plate and can lay claim to the family inheritance, at least a little.
I got my inspiration for this dress via one of HijabiMommy's links. It was for tutorials on a blog called Craftiness is not optional. Super talented woman, btw! I spied her re-fashioned skirt to dress here and couldn't wait to try it out! I did a little step by step, not a tutorial or anything but just so you could see what was going on.
It was 50% off Wednesday at my local Salvation Army. I picked up this awesome blue and white striped Banana Republic skirt for a cool $2.50. Yeah, read 'em and weep! I felt a pang of guilt for taking this super-cute skirt to remake into a dress for Aaminah. ONLY because as it was, it was beautifully made and that was gonna change as soon as I got my hands on it! Here it is, pre-transformation:
|Skirt before I got my hands on it! Notice the chocolate wrapper on the floor. :-D|
So I took Aaminah's measurements and started a-cuttin'. :-) I turned it inside-out and made my measurements. It had a nice hidden zipper on the side but because of the oh-so-pretty pleats in the front I had to cut equal amounts off both sides. I briefly considered re-inserting the fabric strip with the zipper in the back but... I just didn't. :-) It fits over her head so alhamdulillah it wasn't necessary. I might kick myself later but for now...
|close-up of the pleats. How pretty! This fabric is really nice too, btw.|
|Hahahaha... I cut sooo straight! Alhamdulillah I sewed a bit better. lol|
Also in the tutorial the lady folded her skirt in half and cut through both at one time to ensure it was symmetrical. Ummmm yeah. I didn't. :-) Like I said, end result I don't think you can see but it sure looks funny here!
After sewing the side seams, this is what we have:
Ready for me to make the straps. Now that's another issue. Honestly, I have to get a board and good scissors! I just kinda eye-balled it; alhamdulillah they were really close in size but it could have been a lot better if I would have just slowed down. I always feel rushed when I sew (the too-busy mom guilt) so I tend to hurry myself.
Anyway got the straps sewn in and then decorated the front (mostly to hide the stitching) with some hand-made yo-yos. Cute I think.
|I sewed in the straps in a V-shape in the back to keep them from slipping off her shoulder. :-) They are pretty spot-on but the dress was folded a little.|
Here is the complete dress:
|Notice the awesome details on the bottom of the skirt.|
1. It's great to have a zipper in it but make sure it's in a place you can keep it and use it. Otherwise you might want to get a different skirt.
2. Keep any decorations (such as the center pleats) centered. Alhamdulillah I remembered that gem!!!
3. Have good equipment! Really. That includes good thread (I bought cheap cotton and it's annoying me!).
4. Take your time. If it says it takes an hour, plan on 4 so you do things exactly right.
5. Decide how to handle the skirt liner, if there is one. In my case, I went ahead and just sewed it into the dress seams but it would have been better to have take it out and done it separately.
6. Don't forget steps! I forgot to serge/zig-zag my raw edges. I don't have a serger but I could have used the zig-zag function on my machine. I didn't remember to (novice mistake) and I just pressed my seams flat. Oh well, live and learn!
I also bought a couple of other super-cute skirts/dresses/shirt to make into clothes for her. It's really fun for me and it's much cheaper to use $2.00 items from the thrift shop than to waste fabric at $7 a yard. :-)
If you make this, please let me know! I would love to see it. :-) Ma salaama ya'll..