Karen brought us 2 tiny dresses with great fabric that she hoped to revamp into something she could wear–you may have already seen how we turned the first into a tunic. This vintage silk dress needed a little more attention. All around it was too small, the armpits had rips in them, but we both agreed that this dress needed to be revamped so it could have another life cycle!

Before and after vintage revamp

After studying the patterning of the dress, the decorative details, and what usable material we had to work with, I suggested that we slice the dress straight down the front and back and add in panels. The first panel I really wanted to use and showcase more was the flap on the front of the skirt with a really cool thread cutout detail. Karen was on board so I started patterning and cutting!

2 before-lores

3 panel-for-center-front-lores

First, I sliced the front and back. Then I moved the skirt panel up to be the new center of the bodice and I scooted the old sides outward and draped these pieces so where they met the new panel they acted like tailored princess seams. I then ditched the zipper on the back and cut apart pieces from the old hem to create the back panel with a horizontal waist seam to blend in with the pieces around it. After all of that we decided to remove the sleeves, raised the waist to her true waist, tailored the sides to add some more shape, hemmed the bottom, and added elastic to tuck in the waist, but still keep a flat center front and back (the shape that is a lady’s best friend!).

4 Karen-after-with-details-lores

5 Karen-after-lores 6 after-close-up lores 7 Karen-after-back-lores

Now Karen is actually able to wear the dress as a shirt she can wear more often as an adorable wardrobe staple perfect for work or play!

Do you have a tiny vintage dress that you want revamped so you can keep it in your wardrobe? Give us a call to schedule an appointment at  (202)567-7668 or email us at info@gingerrootdesign.com.

*Tailoring by appointment only. Closed Wednesdays and Sundays.

About the author

Kristen is one of the owners and founders of Ginger Root Design and ReVamp ReWear Design and Tailoring.

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