Red Dress Refashion 1

I found this red dress on the sale rack at Vinnies. The fabric is a crinkly viscose, and it has some nice pin-tuck detailing on the bodice. I thought it had potential – my before pic is a bit dark, but it’s a bright cherry red, and there’s lots of fabric to work with.

The previous owner had blinged it up a little:


They only replaced four of the original buttons with these gold-and-glass babies. For whatever reason, they sewed three of the original buttons on the backs of these new ones. Weird. Still, I was probably going to have enough buttons for my purpose.

Sadly, I realised why this dress was on the $2 rack. There were tons of holes around the lower edge of the dress.


This thwarted my original plan of a maxi-skirt or even a hi-lo maxi-skirt – there was just too many holes to work around. So, I decided to make a sun-dress instead.

I used another dress as a pattern, tracing around it to get armholes and adjust the side seam a bit.


Using the same dress to get a hi-lo hem as well.




Then I sewed up the new side-seams, carefully replacing the original waist ties, and folded, stitched and pressed the hem.

I was going to use some of the leftover fabric to make bias binding for the armholes, but this fabric was really stretchy and mobile and basically a complete pain to work with. So I just used some black satin bias binding from my sewing box. I sewed it on the outside first, then folded it to the inside and used the ‘stitch in the ditch’ technique, sewing from the right side of the dress and catching the edge of the binding on the inside.

Sewing the bias to the right side of the armhole edge.

Sewing the bias to the right side of the armhole edge.

Stitching in the ditch, from the right side.

Stitching in the ditch, from the right side.

Remember how I mentioned the original buttons being sewn on the inside of the dress? Well, with those three and two more salvaged from the lower offcut of the skirt, I had enough to replace the four nasty gold buttons, plus a spare.

Here’s the finished product!


It’s breezy and comfy to wear. I have a feeling it will get used quite a bit this summer!


In other news…. while checking out some op shops in my current suburb, I came across this adorable sewing table.


It was $20 which was probably a bit more than I would have thought, but it suited my purposes so perfectly I didn’t really mind! Look, made for sewing:


The green floral fabric is two napkins which cost me all of 50c at another op shop. At the time I had no idea what they would get used for. Turns out they were destined for this little table!

I can also use this as a study table – perfect size for my laptop. And, it’s on wheels, so I can move it around in my borrowed bedroom to wherever is convenient at the time!