handmade wardrobe · refashion · sewing

Red Dress Refashion {Dress to 2-Piece}

I can’t have a month long “blog-a-versary” without a refashion so today I’m sharing a refashion that was months in the making. I finished this piece some time ago but had to make a small alteration. I didn’t feel like doing the work so I threw this into my “work in progress” pile. A few weeks ago, I finally picked it back up.

This dress was one of the many pieces I took when I raided my Grandma’s wardrobe. Before she passed, she was always trying to get me to take her clothes. She lost a considerable amount of weight in the last few years of her life and couldn’t fit into most of her wardrobe. After she passed, I took a huge chuck of her clothes because that’s how I felt I would stay connected to her. Over time, I’ve gotten rid of many pieces that just didn’t speak to me but kept some special garments that I knew I could make my own. Most of the pieces are dresses and some tops, and I’ve already remade a few of them here and here.

When I first pulled this red dress out, it was to remake for an event. I was only going to take in the sides and hem the skirt but after thinking it over, I wanted to keep the slit in the back and knew the original plan wouldn’t work. I’ve been seeing a lot of “2-piece” outfits in the ready to wear market and thought that would be the perfect thing to do! I would be able to keep the slit and give this dress a modern twist!


I wanted to keep the zipper on the top half so after I cut the top off the dress, it had to be hemmed. I now wish I put in a separating zipper because it is a little tight to squeeze into the top. I took the sides in a few inches but wanted to leave it boxy. Other than that, the top remained the same.



For the bottom, I took my basic skirt sloper from pattern making and used that to give the bottom the proper shape. Unfortunately, I was trying to get such a tight fit, I made it a little too tight and the back started to pucker. This was where I left the project.

Everything was done-I had put a zipper in the skirt, the top was finished, but I didn’t feel like letting the sides out of the skirt. It was because the event had passed, I wore something else, and didn’t need this outfit anymore! So I put it in the ever-growing work in progress pile but kept seeing the red fabric peek out and knew I just needed to finish it. And with valentine’s day coming up, I thought it would be the best time! So I took the 20 MINUTES to finish it!


You can tell it’s been some time since I started this because my hair was still long in the before picture!

apparel sewing7

I really wanted to wear this to dinner last night, but at -1 degrees, there was NO WAY it was happening. But it’s done! And I’m sure there will be a time I can wear it in the future. I hope everyone had a wonderful Valentine’s Day!





Here’s a photo of my Grandma wearing the original dress!


7 thoughts on “Red Dress Refashion {Dress to 2-Piece}

  1. WOW! You did a wonderful job turning the dress into a very chic 2-piece! Love it!! and I give you lots of props because I do not have the patience for re-purposing items lol..I would much rather sew from scratch but you did a good job!


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