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Refashioned 90’s to 40’s

Can i just start with how much i love this dress???

It started off as a rather tragic 90’s dress (before picture at the end of post) – but I couldn’t go past the fact that it was silk and Ralph Lauren and the print kind of reminded me of this sample I made last fall. I have a shocking silk addiction. I need to stop thrifting silk…

Anywayyy, my first reaction when I find a long dress at a thrift store is to quickly hem it. But I had this idea that if instead i cut the mid section out, then gathered the skirt at the waist, then I would end up with something kind of reminiscent of a 40’s house dress. I think it worked!! I’m ridiculously thrilled with how this dress turned out!

Dress: Thrifted & altered
Shoes: c/o Modcloth
Belt: Zara, came with this skirt
Necklace: Vintage via Ebay

About Author

Meg is the Founder and Creative Director of Megan Nielsen Patterns, and is constantly dreaming up ideas for new sewing patterns and ways to make your sewing journey more enjoyable! She gets really excited about design details and is always trying to add way too many variations to our patterns.

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Linley
11 years ago

friend! love what you did with this dress! that shape/length looks amazing on you!!

Caitlin
11 years ago

I’m in love with this dress! This is why I need to become a master at alterations and sewing :)

districtofchic
11 years ago

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I want your crafty skills!!! I love how this dress turned out!!

Clara
11 years ago

Gorgeous!!! You have serious skills, girl. Very jealous! :) Make a dress in this shape in your next collection, pretty please? :)

Loren
11 years ago

This alteration looks amazing on you. I see similar dresses to this in thrift stores all the time, I’ve never been inspired to make anything quite this awesome before.

BiblioMOMia
11 years ago

SO gorgeous! What a brilliant, but relatively easy, idea. LOVE. It looks unbelievable on you.

Theresa
Theresa
11 years ago

I have a very similar dress that I bought with the intention of just hemming it (mine isn’t silk though), but what you did looks amazing – any hope for a tutorial or at least a short description of how you did it?

Heather, 29 Skirts
11 years ago

Whoa, what a transformation! The dress looks adorable!

Kath Shea
Kath Shea
11 years ago

Ta daa!!! Such a great result. I also covet your sewing skills and eye for (re)styling garments! : )

Annelise
Annelise
11 years ago

Meg you look amazing!!! Seriously stunning – Where can I get one? Xx

Kiri
11 years ago

Thanks for showing us this, I have a similar dress I’d planned on shortening but hadn’t even thought about adding a waist into it.

Katie Mead
Katie Mead
11 years ago

I have a dress like yours too…it’s been waiting for a hemming. Your idea is so much better! Any chance for a how-to?

Casey
11 years ago

Fantastic redo! I had a similar dress I thrifted a few years ago and shortened for a more flattering look as well, which resulted in my favorite “40s” dress (until it accidentally was thrown in the wash and shrunk! boo-hoo!). Yours was definitely worth revamping for the classic cut and beautiful fabric. :)

mil
mil
11 years ago

dress is absolutely perfect on you….inspired choice of accessories…hmmmm…its got me thinking…

trackback

[…] all! Sorry about not posting a tutorial for this dress alteration yesterday – sometimes I worry I’m overloading you all with tutorials, so I wasn’t sure […]

Jess
10 years ago

Wow! What you’ve done with the dress is amazing!

Girl & Closet (Veronika)

Goodness, that dress looks absolutely gorgeous thanks to your fabulous skills!! I adore it! Hope you’re having a fantastic weekend. xo veronika

Clare
10 years ago

What a seriously beautiful dress! I love how you styled it here, too. :)

Anna
Anna
10 years ago

Wow! There’s no comparing the before and after. What made you look like you belong in some commune is now a super cute and sexy yet very classy everyday dress! Love the 40s look! And may I say that you have the most lovely super pale skin! I’m so jealous, I work so hard to have lovely pale skin like that but I don’t think mine is that pretty. ;)

Iveta
10 years ago

This look are grate on You! and I love shoes.

Sophia
Sophia
10 years ago

I had a long pink linen dress exactly like this that I’ve wanted to shorten for ages, but wasn’t sure how. I saw your tutorial this morning, and shortened my dress this afternoon. It turned out perfect. Thank you so much!