Well, I hit a second thrift shop--and it was SOOOO much better than last time. Larger, everything laid out in rows, clearly marked items--many of them brand new--arranged by COLOR! And the prices were much closer to what I had in mind the first time around! All in all, it was a much, much better experience--except for the fact that Little Bear badly needed a nap and cut short my shopping by having a melt down!
I did come away with a small bag of goodies though. The one thing I grabbed that I'm going to work with first--this men's button down shirt.
I love the Hawaiian print. I had just read Lil Blue Boo's Vintage Travel Patches dress tutorial, and I think that's the frame of mind I was in!
I've been dying to try turning a men's shirt into a girl's dress. Its been all over the internet, but I'm pretty sure it originated here at Made by Dana.
Actually, I'm thinking of renaming my blog--"Made...More Complicated", since apparently I enjoy taking her cute refashioning ideas and waaaay over-complicating them.
Anyway, here's basically what I did:
Cut off the sleeves, the collar, and the inside of the pocket (I just sewed the opening shut, which I regret. The pocket ended up being in a cute spot, and I should have left it alone)
Then I cut off the sleeves, cut them open along the seam, and trimmed a bit off the side. I kept most of the width, because I had a plan in mind.
I gathered the sleeves to the center, and then resewed them back on the body of the shirt/dress. I hemmed them, and ran one stitch around the edge with elastic thread in the bobbin.
Next I sewed elastic around the neckline, stretching it as I went, so it gathered the neck. (I cut the elastic to match about how big around I wanted the neck to be)
I took a piece I had cut from the side, made some bias tape, and sewed it around the neckline encasing the elastic (careful not to stretch the elastic)***
I loaded the elastic thread back in the bobbin, and did eleven even rows of stitching across the bodice front, with navy thread on the front (from about an inch under the collar to the bottom of the sleeves) (I also gave up on pictures at this point, because I wanted to get done!!)
I made simple tubes out of more scraps, pinned them to the sides for ties, and sewed up the sides, adding a tag. And finally, I hemmed it.
And here's what we ended up with:
Pretty cute, I think! (the dress isn't bad, either, hehehe)
Perfect for hanging out in the warm spring sun...
Examining newly painted toes (a red dress simply demands red toes)
***So here, at the very bottom, in small print, is where I make this admission: the was supposed to be for TinyTim. Yup, I fought this stupid shirt dress, adjusted, measured, cut, made the armholes too small. But the final nail in the coffin was when I sewed the bias tape around the neckline...and it didn't even come close to fitting over TinyTim's head. (like Sputnik). Aren't I fortunate to have daughters in such a range of sizes? A simple hem, and voila! Dress for BabyBear. And act like you meant to do it that way...yeah, yeah, that's the ticket..I MEANT to do it....