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I have a 15yr old that was born with an innate desire for all things girly. She loves dresses, possibly too much, and will wear them past the time when they should be retired. Lately her love for mashed potatoes has begun to interfere with her dress love...and she's outgrown almost all of her dresses. So tonight I decided to recycle them into skirts. 

I know this is a simple project and most people on here probably already know how to do it, but I couldn't find an ible on it.  Also you could use this idea for an elderly lady, where she might have trouble zipping dresses or buttoning, a pull up skirt and a pull over top would be much easier. 

Dresses and even longer skirts can have this done to them as long as they have an A line sort of shape. This dress to skirt make over cost me nothing as I already had the thread and elastic. Here's what you'll need.

dress that is too small
scissors
elastic for waistline
thread
needle

WARNING: This is not a perfection project. It's a quick fix. My sewing machine isn't working so I stitched the top by hand and finished a skirt in about 30min. You could do a more professional job on a machine. I also detailed the steps in the pictures just to make sure it was clear so if you are unclear on a step check the pics or ask and I'll do my best to help. 


Step 1: Lay Your Dress Out

I laid the dress out flat and cut right below the bodice. Since the bodice was tight and the material stretchy this worked out fine. You should try it on inside out to make sure it's easy to pull up over your hips and that you have the proper length. Fold the material over far enough that your elastic can slide in and so that you can turn the raw edge under & pin. Pin the whole way around.

Also you can measure your elastic now, I pulled it around her waist and stretched it just a bit. Since you're not stitching into the actual elastic then there's no need for the usual way of measuring elastic. This is more like a belt fit. 

Step 2: Make a Waistband

Stitch the bottom of the fold all the way around leaving a small space open to slide your elastic through. I stitched mine down by hand, you can use a machine if you have one, but it took me only a half an hour from start to finish to make this skirt by hand. You'll want to use a thread that blends with your skirt, mine blended so well it's rather hard to see.

Next you'll need to thread the elastic through the tunnel you made from sewing the top over. When you have threaded it completely through then sew your two ends of elastic together, tuck it into the waistband and finish stitching the waistband down. 


Step 3: Here's Your Finished Skirt...

So here's your finished skirt it's longer than the dress was, and now can be worn in cooler weather with a sweater and leggings if she wants. I plan to use some of the leftover fabric as embellishments.  

I hope you like your skirt as much as my little girly girl does. This is a quick, fun project a kid could actually do themselves with a little supervision. Also if you're like me and had one too many plates of turkey at Thanksgiving then it might benefit you too. It keeps loved items in use, and material out of landfills, plus it saves $$$ 
This was great, thanks : )
I like this kind of ideas: so simple, so easy to make and for a so good result!
Cool! What an easy and awesome idea.
Thanks I'm so glad you liked it. I just hoped it would help someone else in the same situation.

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Bio: I live on a farm with my 3 teenagers. Almost all my animals were either rescued from someone's dinner table or were abandoned. I ... More »
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