Striped Button-Up Skirt Reconstruction

When I found this dress at the thrift store last month, I snatched it up with no hesitation.

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I’m fairly certain that I wasn’t trying to make a duck face. I must’ve been talking to Newton when the timer went off. Haha!

I liked a lot of things about the dress: the colors, the stripes, the buttons, the pockets, the shape of the skirt. However, I don’t usually do maxi length dresses or skirts. They tend to make me look extra short. As I was going through my wardrobe in preparation for Me-Made-May, I discovered that I really need more separates. I especially don’t have very many skirts. So, I decided to make a skirt.

IMG_6774I plan to alter the collar of the bodice (it’s a bit much for me) and make a peplum top with the bodice of the dress and the left over skirt pieces.

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I can wear it with or without the belt. Once I have my peplum top made, I can wear the belt with it when I want also.

This was an easy peasy reconstruction. Here are the deets:

The first step was to separate the skirt and the bodice.

The first step was to separate the skirt and the bodice.

I pinned the existing pleats, and basted around the top of the skirt.

I pinned the existing pleats, and basted around the top of the skirt.

I measured and cut the bottom of the skirt to my desired length, and used a portion of the left-over skirt to make the waistband.

I measured and cut the bottom of the skirt to my desired length, and used a portion of the left-over skirt to make the waistband.

I cut two rectangular pieces for the waistband, added interfacing to the pieces, sewed them, right sides together, along the short edges and one long edge (the top of the waistband), and trimmed the seam allowances. The length of the wasitband pieces equaled my waist measurement plus the overlap on the front edges for the button closure. The width of the waistband piece was simply the width of the finished waistband plus seam allowances for the top and bottom of the waistband.

I cut two rectangular pieces for the waistband and waistband facing, added interfacing to the waistband piece, sewed them, right sides together, along the short edges and one long edge (the top of the waistband), and trimmed the seam allowances. The length of the waistband pieces was equal to the finished waist measurement plus the overlap on the front edges for the button closure. The width of the waistband pieces equaled the width of the finished waistband plus seam allowances for the top and bottom of the waistband. (Yep, that’s a Renfrew that I’m working on in the background. I know some of you would consider me a fool, but I usually work on about three projects at once :O)

I don’t know why, but I’m missing a picture for the next step. I turned the waistband in (wrong sides together), and pinned the bottom edge of the waistband to the waist of the skirt (right sides together). I was careful to leave the bottom edge of the waistband facing free. Once I stitched the bottom edge of the waistband to the skirt from front edge to front edge, I trimmed the seam allowances and pressed the seam allowances up.

Fold and press the bottom of the waistband facing under and over the seam allowances that you just pressed up. Pin the facing down (from the right side) along the inside of the skirt. You'll be stitching the facing down from the right side of the skirt, so you need to make sure to pin through from the right side of the skirt.

Next, I folded and pressed the bottom of the waistband facing under and over the seam allowances that I’d just pressed up. Then, I pinned the facing down (from the right side) along the inside of the skirt. Since I’d be stitching the facing down from the right side of the skirt, I had to make sure to pin through from the right side of the skirt. Do you see what I mean in the photo?

Stitch in the ditch of the skirt/waistband seam from front edge to front edge. Go slow to make sure that you're catching the waistband facing on the underside.

I stitched in the ditch of the skirt/waistband seam from front edge to front edge, making sure to catch the facing on the underside.

I sewed a vertical buttonhole on the right front edge of the waistband, matching it up with the buttonholes down the rest of the skirt. To complete the waistband, I stitched a button to the left front edge of the waistband. I used one of the buttons from the left-over skirt material.

Finally, I hemmed the bottom of the skirt. I did a rolled hem on my serger, as it looked really nice with this fabric.

That’s it!

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I should have made my buttonhole a bit smaller; I didn’t account for how much it might stretch. Everything about the waistband matched up perfectly at the beginning of the day. Oh well! I’m sure some washing, drying and ironing will do the trick.

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Um..not sure why I didn’t straighten out the waistband under the belt.

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It’s a bit wrinkly because I wore it for a day and neglected to iron it.

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I received several compliments on my outfit the day that I wore this skirt. That always brightens my day. :)

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It was such a beautiful evening when I took these pictures. Alex and Newton went out on the deck at one point, so I took some pictures of them.

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Newton just looks pissed off in most of these pictures. He really doesn’t like getting his picture taken. He usually tries to turn away from the camera. I think he’s afraid of getting his soul stolen, or something.

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I had to take some pictures with the Newt, too.

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He loves people, most of the time. But some of the time, he acts like a cat, and he couldn’t be bothered with us or with the antics we get up to.

IMG_6802Sometimes, I think I’m the victim of unrequited love. He’ll try his hardest to ignore me. At times, he seems downright disgusted with me. At night, if I’m being too loud and he’s in his bed trying to sleep, he throws mini tantrums. He’ll sigh louder than I’ve ever heard a dog sigh and he’ll throw himself down facing the wall, refusing to look at us no matter how much we talk to him.

You will be cuddled!!!

You will be cuddled, and you will like it!

He has a lot of little quirks, but they make him even more lovable. Our life wouldn’t be anywhere near as fun without him around. How could you not love that cute little face?

This was after I put him down. You can see the immediate difference in his face and ears.

 

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22 Responses to Striped Button-Up Skirt Reconstruction

  1. Marie says:

    Wow, what a great find…love the colours and stripes! The skirt looks fab and I can’t wait to see how you refashion the top. Newt’s really cute bless him ;o)

    • Becca says:

      Thanks! I’m working the top into my sewing schedule soon. He is adorable and a sweetheart…most of the time. :)

  2. Nay says:

    I’ll empathise with Newton, I’ve never been able to put it into words before but fear of having your “soul stolen” just about sums up how I feel about photography too! LOL!! Love your skirt. The big buttons and colour of the stripe just reminds me of ice cream. Can’t wait to see what you do with the top :)

    • Becca says:

      Haha! That’s funny! It’s interesting how the color and stripes remind you of ice cream, because when I was working on it, I was thinking it should be called the “Sorbet Skirt,” or something. :)

  3. Great dress into great skirt. Looks like you will get lots of wear out of it. The colors are perfect for you. If that buttonhole at the waist continues to stretch out with wear, you could add a hook and bar underneath to lessen the strain on the button.

    • Becca says:

      Thank you! I knew I forgot to mention something…I actually did add some snaps inside at the skirt/waistband seam, closer to the front edge than the button. The snaps were all I had at the time. However, I think your hook and bar idea would be much more effective. I’ll put that on my shopping list. Thanks!

  4. Ginny says:

    Aaw. I know a lot of dogs who don’t like cameras. My mum’s dog makes a run for it as soon as you pick one up- he obviously doesn’t trust that strange little box that makes funny clicks and beeps when you point it at him! Lovely skirt. The pockets are really cute.

    • Becca says:

      The funny thing is, Newton even knows when I’m trying to take his picture with my phone and it doesn’t make any sound or flash. So, with him it seems to be even more than just fear of the sounds and lights. It’s like he instinctively knows when someone’s trying to capture his likeness. Ha! I could even attempt to take a picture of him covertly with my phone from across the room and he would look up and look away, annoyed. He is very smart little dog. :) Thanks! The pockets are my favorite part.

  5. LLADYBIRD says:

    REALLY cute! I love those pockets :D

  6. Hehe Newton sounds like quite the character, I love it!! Fab dress, I love it even better as a skirt and I bet that top will turn out super cute as well!

  7. gingermakes says:

    What a CUTE skirt! Can’t wait to see the top! It’s very summery and sweet!

    Your dog is TOO cute! He sounds like such a character (and the polar opposite of my clingy bedhogs)!

    • Becca says:

      Thanks so much! It’s great that it can work for spring and summer.
      He is definitely a character. He’s basically our entertainment every day. Ha!

  8. Jen says:

    What a great transformation! I am in love with those big pockets on the skirt too, I can see why you snapped it up!

    Can’t wait to see the top transformation!

  9. Michelle says:

    I love those pockets!

    Can’t wait to see what you do with the bodice. The whole dress is beautiful, but yes, a bit long (for my tastes as well).

    • Becca says:

      Thanks! The pockets are my favorite, too. I really liked the original dress, but I just don’t think long dresses suit me.

  10. Jennifer S says:

    We got our dog from a rescue group and she hates having her picture taken too. My husband thinks she saw some sort of violent mafia crime and she’s in the witness protection program. I’m wondering if it’s more like your dog’s view. He’s so adorable!

    • Becca says:

      Witness protection, I like that. Haha! Well, that’s understandable reason to not want your picture taken. ;) She definitely could’ve been a witness to or the victim of something horrible, especially if you got her from a rescue group. It’s possible that she could have the same view as Newton about the camera. Dogs have different personalities and quirks, just like humans.

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  12. Great Skirt ! what did you do with the upper part ?
    mirjam

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