Welcome to Night Owl! A place to shop for all the latest unique, boutique and upcyled clothing trends for women and children of all ages! And a fun place to learn about new crafts, upcycling, and win giveaways! Please click on the circles to the left to direct you to the "Shop", to my "Tutorials" or to my Hawaiian clothing line, "Ke Aloha O Kanae". Thank you for visiting and I hope you come back often! If you want to get daily updates please click the Subscribe link to the right! Have a fantastic day!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Spending time with my worst enemy!!! A sundress tutorial!

I HATE, I mean, really truly HATE the seam ripper!!! Typically when you have to use the seam ripper, it means you've made a mistake! My Grandma can vouch for how much I hate it given the ten million things I've given her over the years to take stitches out on! (She has the patience I simply was not born with)!!! LOL! Or maybe she just felt bad for me as I travel along this sewing journey in my life! Who knows..all I know is that I can't stand the seam ripper!!! My neighbor was getting rid of a bunch of clothes, and along with the pants I turned into a skirt , i also grabbed this cute little skirt! I could have just kept it for myself, after all it was a hawaiian print and you all know how much I love Hawaiian stuff! However it was screaming at me to do something else with it....a skirt for Sadie, a dress??? I looked it over...ugh, a waistband, a zipper, darts.....triple ugh...all that meant having to use my seam ripper!!! No bueno! So it has sat in my drawer of 'things to get to one day"..waiting, waiting waiting it's turn.....I have been very inspired lately by other upcyclers so today I thought, it's your turn little buddy! And, I thought, it is time to make peace with my enemy.
It's an adorable skirt! It really is...simple A frame..nicely made...cutest little horizontal pleats on the bottom adorned with a fabric rosette...why wouldn't I just keep it for myself? Oh yeah,,,making friends...making friends.....

First measure your child from armpit area to where you would like the hem to fall. Then measure around their underarm and subtract 2 inches. Cut your elastic (I used 3/4") to that measurement. I wanted a long dress so I needed to make the most of the skirt. If I wanted it shorter, this would just be titled "A sundress tutorial".! Ha! I started by taking the zipper out, (and pretending I loved my seam ripper!)and then going all the way around the skirt and taking off the waistband and opening up the darts.


Then I sewed up the back seam where the zipper was and serged around the waist area to make a clean edge.

I made a casing for it, (for detailed instructions on making a casing click here) . This time I made it 4" because I wanted a little bit of a ruffle up top. I made that by laying my fabric in line with the guides on my sewing machine and sewing a straight stitch...see photos below for detail.
I inserted my elastic and closed the opening.
I then took the waist band that I took off earlier and cut two straps from it, both 9". This measurement may be different for you. Sadie wears a size 2T and this is how much we needed to go from the back of her shoulders to the front. This was a bit tricky from here out because the waist band was cut on the bias to accomodate the A-frame shape of this skirt. So, once I cut it, I had to work with the fabric a bit and tweak it to lay just right...you may want to cut it a bit longer and after you sew it, tweak it then and work with it to get it to lay flat. I serged the sides of the straps together and then turned the serged edge so it was underneath and ironed the strap flat....rather than dealing with serging it on the wrong side and then turning a skinny strap right side out.(Again, little to no patience for that!)


I measured 2 1/2 inches out from the center front and back of the dress NOT stretching the elastic....
 I attatched the straps on the inside of the dress by just simply sewing a straight stitch on the same line as the casing and that's it! Done! A mumu to wear to a luau!
 As for making friends with my enemy???? Well if we can continue down the road of 'helping each other rather than it always being the one I have to deal with it when I'm upset over my wrong doings,,,then maybe we can get along after all!!! LOL! After all, teamwork divides the task and multiplies the success, right?!

Sadie was not into picture taking today and insisted that the ball be in her photos!!!



 ***You can change these straps by making one long piece and attaching it to the center for a halter style...Sadie doesn't like dresses that tie at her neck which is why we went with this option...You can use ribbon too if you don't have enough fabric to make straps...you can also make this a top instead of  dress..or you can also make it into a toddler skirt just by cutting it and making a casing like I did here! Have fun upcycyling clothes and send me your pics of what you transformed!!!

8 comments:

Anonymous said...

you seriously rock. this is adorable.

natalie (peaches & brown sugar) :)

felicia said...

Cute cute cute!!! The second pic of Sadie is precious! Love the look on her face

Anonymous said...

Super cute, Trisha! I love the fact that it's a long dress. Give her kisses from Grandma please.

Megan said...

That turned out so cute! Thanks for sharing!

Lulu Lane Designs said...

So cute! I have a gray and yellow silk shirt that I bought at a yard sale that I want to make into something else. Just like you, it's sitting in the "to do" pile! btw, new follower from Sunday Scoop! :)

cdhm1127 said...

I come from a long line of non sewers but have decided the crafty mom in me has to venture past the glue gun and I am going to purchase a sewing machine. I am determined to learn to sew, love your blog and that dress is adorable!! =)

Trisha Ashley said...

Thanks everyone! I am glad to inspire and help each of you learn and want to do more crafty things!

ShannonSews said...

That's really adorable! I love the fabric and you made perfect adjustments to make it like new!