Make it Work

From time to time I may acquire clothing that is too big, but I really like the fabric or style OR I may find a something I love for SUPER CHEAP but just isn’t my size.  That’s when I get all Tim Gunn up on its bizniss.
large lace dress

My mom gave me this dress because she knew I could make something out of it. It sat around my house for weeks before I finally decided to tackle it.The sleeves fit perfectly so I can’t imagine what the correct size would have felt like. I came pretty close to sewing up the sides because it was just way to big to use the ol’ belt trick on. Sewing up the sides was just a bit more work than I wanted at the time.   Enter forgotten but genius idea.

tying dress

Here’s what I did:

  1. Loop first side
  2. Loop other side
  3. Tighten & pull ribbon back
  4. Tie and embrace the ruffles!

dress fitting

You may already do this, so don’t be insulted by the simplicity. Even if a dress isn’t exactly your size doesn’t mean its a total loss. Now it’s perfectly fitted without have to touch the sewing machine! Success! I love that I can change the ribbon in the back to be any color I want.

Here’s another…

blue dress

Admittedly, it doesn’t look so bad on the left, but see how sad I am??? I’m so sad on the left. Trust me, it didn’t flatter. It was the prettiest potato sack you will probably ever see. Obviously I photoshopped it a little bit, I don’t have a before picture with the original length. The dress was less than $10 and 3 sizes to big and  hard to tell in the photo but DEFINITELY not in person.

This is what I did:

  1. Cinched the waist in with a belt to make it fitted and less floppy.
  2. Chopped off a few tiers of ruffle to make the length something I would actually wear.

Both these dresses are from Kohl’s which I absolutely recommend stalking the clearance racks. With a coupon, you can get 30% off of the clearance price making it insane cheap. I think I’ve paid only 10% of the original retail price on items before, plus they have really cute clothes!

Here’s a dress I made… like, from scratch:

There once came a day that I realized I had outgrown my American Eagle t-shirts. Not is size, but in style. I also desperately wanted a specific dress from Anthro but didn’t want to pay over $150 for it so I used it as inspiration. It’s not a direct copy, but it totally filled the craving for the other dress. I don’t have a tutorial on this, but I numbered the first photo to show how many t-shirts I used. 6 TOTAL!!! The light blue was a shirt that was too short, so I just chopped off the top and kept it the same which made it so much easier than cutting and configuring the sleeves. I kept it simple and just patched the shirts together as I went. I wish I had more time to sew.

It’s so hard for me to throw things away when I know it could have a second life. I feel like that closely relate to my home DIY, repurposing. I do it all of the time with furniture, so why not let that overflow into other areas as well.

What else do you repurpose? My aunt washes aluminum foil and reuses it like 5 time before throwing it out, is that weird?

Linked up at:Somewhat Simple


Filed under Before and Afters, Clothes, My Life, Simple Ideas

13 responses to “Make it Work

  1. Awesome! I want you to teach me every single thing you know, please.

  2. totes weird… I sometimes reuse ziplock bags, but that’s about it…

    WOW! I sssso love all of these dresses!!! GREAT JOB.
    And so creative on the last one made from tshirts… How does one’s brain come up with that stuff??? Awesome!

    • Gloria

      Haha! I always say “totes” to Caleb and he does that thing where he looks down and slowly shakes his head. I think it’s called utter embarrassment. As for the reason my brain comes up with these things, it’s mostly because I’m CHEAP and determined.

  3. I’m impressed. I’m too afraid to tackle any kind of clothing sewing related project. That last dress is awesome!! Seriously impressed.

    • Gloria

      I’m no expert at sewing, but when it comes to something I can live without, I’m not afraid to take a chance on things. I remember thinking no one at goodwill would even want those t-shirts. It was either a dress or dust rags.

  4. I need to make the anthro knock-off! I’m loving the idea of not contructing new sleeves! Awesome work.

  5. Kat

    You have some mad skills, girl! Love all the dress revamps. My fave is the Anthro one:) Stopping over from Remodelaholic.

    • Gloria

      Thank you! I’m so glad everyone has such nice things to say, I was worried it all might come off a little “homely” for lack of better words. Glad you stopped in!

  6. Wow! I wish I were this creative with my wardrobe! Well done!
    Thank you so much for linking up at Savvy HomeMade Monday. We are partying again and I hope you will stop by! :)

  7. Great post! I love all three dresses. That first trick with the ribbion is Genius!! Oh, and you’re gorgeous by the way!

  8. Pingback: The Artist’s Dojo | A Little Paint

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