handmade wardrobe · refashion · sewing

Attack of the Fringe: Dress Refashion

I’ve spent the past few days writing this post. I write a little, move onto something else, come back to it and delete what I wrote before. I just haven’t been sure how to start this blog entry. March was a weird month for me. I had a lot of big plans but got into a little slump. I received quite a few rejections in March for some projects I was working really hard towards so the creative juices kind of shut down for a bit. I really don’t like to be a negative person but these “no’s” hit me a lot harder than I thought they would. But there is no point in dwelling on what could have been, so I’ve been using all my energy to push forward. I’ve been working so hard on my etsy shop that my apparel sewing has been lagging but this is a piece I was really excited to finish.

I bought this dress months ago during a lunch date in Frenchtown, NJ. There was an adorable consignment shop and this was one of the pieces that caught my eye. Usually, if I know I will be altering a piece I won’t spend a lot of money on it but since this was only $12, I splurged. This is a size L so I think it’s a tunic, but on me, it’s a dress. The fringe on this thing was way too much. I almost didn’t buy it because the fringe was scaring me off. But with a few quick snips, they were gone and I was left with an awesome printed piece. I counted over 50 strips when I cut them off, and I felt awful because the labor that went into making them must have been hours of work (each strip was a little tube of fabric) – but they had to go!


Originally I planned on just making this a simple shift. All I would have to do is hem the sleeves and take in the sides. But this pin caught my eye, and in the months that this tunic sat in my make pile, I started falling in love with drop waist dresses. This tunic was an opportunity to see if the style suited my figure and while this drop waist doesn’t have as much gathering as I would have preferred, I actually love the look on me!

apparel sewing9

This refashion was just a few steps until I achieved a brand new look. I hemmed and sewed a cuffed sleeve, chopped the bottom 8″ off, then took the body in 2″ on each side. I then gathered the bottom 8″ and reattached it to the dress. This was a quick refashion and a great way to do a little more than just “take in the sides” like I’ve gotten accustom to doing in refashions.


As a side note: Shift dresses are one of my new favorite shapes. I still love a cinched waist and think the style is best for my figure but shifts are so much more comfortable! The only downside is I feel I have to wear heels with a shift, as flats make me look extremely short and boxy, but my eyes are open to a whole new world of patterns which is awesome!


In other sewing news, I have a skirt to photograph, one I’m really in love with but didn’t get to wear for the occasion it was made for. I have an active jacket that’s been cut out and ready to stitch and a rain coat that I have been planning since January on my sewing table as we speak.

Until my next post, any tips on getting out of a creative funk, or bouncing back after rejection? Would love to hear your thoughts and comments! Thanks for reading!


13 thoughts on “Attack of the Fringe: Dress Refashion

  1. Nice work! Good on you for being able to see potential in something and making it something you love. This looks amazing on you! I’m yet to be convinced of shift dresses on my figure but you really pull the look off. As for getting out of slumps… sorry to hear you’ve been down, but I usually try setting a few small goals (sewing or otherwise) and physically tick it off a list when I’m done. Helps me every time.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Katy! I’ve tried on shifts at the mall and hated them but I think it definitely has to do with just how much room is in the piece and the length plays a huge roll!

      And I love checking things off a list. I haven’t written one in so long! I really need to start doing that again, great idea!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Love the fabric, and what you turned it into. I get in creative slumps from time to time and usually just wait them out. Maybe not the best thing to do, but my creative spark – so far – has always come back. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. If you don’t mind a little hand sewing, turning dresses into tops is an easy refashion! But if you are looking for no sew suggestions, there are a bunch of t-shirt refashions you can try! I get a lot of inspiration on pinterest. Try searching for “no sew refashions” and you should get some suggestions!

      Liked by 1 person

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