Jan 26, 2011

Time for another Refashion…

Straight to it tonight – it’s getting late!

Here’s the original skirt:

full before

(I told you in an earlier post it was a ‘JAG’ brand skirt but I mixed it up with another skirt I have ready for refashioning… this one is actually a size 8 ‘OJAY’ branded skirt.

b skirt refashion

Now I’m going to try something a little different for me with this tutorial and that is it’s predominately pictures with some explanatory text contained within them. You can click on the picture to enlarge it and read the text a little easier… let me know what you think of this type of tute… is it too generalised and lacking detail? does it take to long to load?

So to begin:

aa materials

Cut open skirt:


e open skirt

Shorten skirt to length required for dress:

c skirt refashion

My skirt had pleats on the lower portion… I made sure when I cut it open that my closing seam when I join it back up would be in the hidden crease of a pleat… but as for those pleats:

fa pleats

f cut pleats

Now take your contrasting fabric and get cutting…

d triangles

After cutting all your triangles you are ready to join all those skirt pleats back up…

g skirt triangles


When you get to your last triangle you will also want to join your skirt/dress back up along the opening so that it forms a tube like shape (not an open flat anymore).

I then went ahead and overlocked the hemline to neaten it up and get it ready for hemming a little later… Check this out now… no more boring pleats!

i skirt view

j skirt close view

Now onto the what is now the dress bodice…. My skirt had a zipper and buttons at the centre back which I wanted to keep but because of the pleats I did not want to cut two side seams… the result of which is a seam running down the centre front. Not something I would normally do or like but the skirt had pleats to hide it on the bottom portion and luckily pin tuck pleats on the upper portion.

Nonetheless, I wanted to jazz it up a little so…..

k ruffle making

Using the longest stitch setting on your machine sew a straight line down the centre (DON’T lock stitch the start or end)

l ruffle

Pull the bobbin thread once you have sewn the length of the fabric to make your ruffles.

m end ruffles

Then attach the ruffle to the centre front of the dress…


Super easy spaghetti straps for the shoulder ties… because the dress is now pretty ‘full on’ I wanted really simple shoulder detail but I’m not sure if I’m really happy with it – but more on that later….

o arm straps

p bias

q bias 2

Whilst at the iron you might as well press the hem line of your dress:

r hemline

So, now you’re ready to finish the hem and sew on your spaghetti straps…

s hemline

Well, as I mentioned earlier it’s a little late here (2AM late in fact – lucky for some I’m somewhat of an insomniac…) so I can’t show you a picture of Big Little Miss M wearing the dress. This is a shame because no matter how I photographed it hanging or laid out nothing gave it justice Sad smile. Sure hope it looks good on her….

Here’s the best of a bad bunch of finished photo’s:

Front ruffles…


t ruffles

u finished

I LOVE how the skirt turned out… its fuller than a full circle and I just know it’s destined to become a twirly favourite… As I said earlier though I’m not sure about the spaghetti straps. I wanted simple because the rest of the dress is quite eye catching but somehow the straps just look a little unbalanced with the rest of the dress… I will see how it looks on otherwise I might change them yet!

So, I hope you liked this refashion but do check back in a day or so to see this dress in action so to speak…

Although this tutorial is specific to this skirt you could replicate the idea with any pleated skirt of any size – even if you had a skirt that fits but wanted to give it more twirl factor… Most my refashions are applicable not only to the piece I am reworking but can be applied to any similar type clothing item with just a few modifications. If you ever have any questions or need a little guidance with something you are refashioning from one of my tutes, please don’t hesitate to drop me a line… I’d love to know I’m inspiring you out there to find some unloved clothing and turn it into something special and unique…. oh and if your not already following along, please feel free to follow my blog – the more the merrier

UPDATE: Here is the dress in action – rated a 10 for twirl factor by Big Little Miss M…. Went berry picking today and HAD to wear it (you can see/read more of that in  new post later today…)

in action

Cheers Winking smile

The Spangler


  1. This is FABULOUS! I think I might have to stop at the thrift store on the way home tonight just to make this sometime soon! Thank you for another great tutorial! Loved the pics.

  2. That was a great tutorial and you did a great job on creating something pretty out of the simple gray skirt. Have a great day.

  3. That's adorable! I love the twirl factor! Fun.
    I hope you can join my link party! Each entry leaves you eligible to win $130 from CSN Stores.com. alittleknickknack.blogspot.com

  4. This is so cute! I love it!



  5. I love how the colors work together!!!

  6. Very cute! I have a question: you didn't hem the ruffles? Won't they fray?

    I'm posting a link of this tut to http://www.mysewingcircle.com/ as I know it will be a hit with that sewing community.

  7. Thanks for all the lovely comments... just love feedback!
    I was kind of going for a 'shabby-chic' look on the ruffles, so I tore the fabric strips rather than cutting them and then left the edges raw so that they would fray a little more with wear - but for a neater look you could do a rolled hem or simply serge the edges or to maintain a neater frayed look stitch a straight seam approx 1/4" in from the edges... what ever your personal preference I guess :)
    The Spangler xo

  8. this is too cute, reminds me of the cheerleader skirt I made for my princess this past halloween.

    Feel free to stop by and link up to my Make & Share 1st edition Fridays if you like.
    ~ Christy

  9. Excellent tutorial. Easy to read/understand. Instructions/photos MAKE SENSE, Thanks so much. More tutorials should follow your format, make it easier to understand/follow them. Again, thanks for such exemplary tutoring.

  10. I just love those contrasting pleats! Great job! :) Lisa

  11. I had a hard time reading some of the instructions which were printed on top of the print fabric, for instance. For balance (and comfort) straps the same width as the center of the bodice ruffle would look nice.


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