At the beginning of this year, my parent’s were downsizing and in the process, donated their dining room set – including hutch, table and chairs. With this went all my mom’s tablecloth linens – which she set aside for me to go through! They had a small square table, and I have a long table so none of the linens can be used in my dining room – so I got some new materials to sew with! I had plans for a few of the tablecloths and runners, but there were a few that I didn’t know what to do with. Including this cute red plaid one. But before I get into the inspiration behind it, here’s the full refashion!
With COVID happening, a lot of smaller thrift stores/vintage shops are putting clothes online to sell, and one shop I went to in San Francisco, Relove, put this adorable dress on instagram. Unfortunately someone beat me to buying it, but that didn’t stop me from getting inspired to make my own! I already had a very similar print – just in a different color – and was looking for a project for this table cloth.
I asked for pattern suggestions over on instagram looking for the following requirements: boxy cut, sleeve cuffs, back button closure, and higher neckline. I was originally going to use my Lou Box Top pattern but after making a mock up, I noticed that this dress would lay best with separate sleeves. (The Lou Box Top pattern does not have a separate sleeve pattern, the bodice connects to the sleeves.) I got a lot of great suggestions but the pattern that fit the most was Fibre Mood Mira.
While the original dress had a longer skirt and lower waistline, I wanted my dress to have a shorter look so my body wouldn’t be overwhelmed by the larger plaid. Mira is a really cute pattern and I only had to do a few changes to get the result I wanted. I added a sleeve cuff, and cut a single tier skirt, instead of the two tiers in the pattern. After I finished sewing and trying the dress on, I noticed it was a little too boxy for me, and looked frumpier than I wanted. I went back in and removed 2” from each side seam. After gathering the skirt, the back was falling a little flat so I added a little bit of elastic to the back seam allowance for just a bit more shape. You can see the difference in the front where I had more gathering, and the back which now has the elastic added.
Using a tablecloth for apparel can be a really great alternative for buying fabric. For this refashion I needed to take out all the finished seams to get the most out of my material. I was hoping to save one of the finished edges as my hem, but it didn’t work out this time. However, if you want to sew with a tablecloth, saving a finished edge could be a great sewing shortcut!
Pattern details: Fibre Mood Mira, size 36. My only issue with this pattern was in the arms. I do not have skinny arms, and this dress has a tighter sleeve pattern. I should have looked more closely before cutting out my fabric, but just a warning if anyone else has thicker arms! I would definitely make this dress again, in this style and with the tiered skirt like the original pattern. It’s a cute, simple dress that has a ton of possibilities. I’m really excited to wear this dress on those days I want something cute and breezy and maybe it’ll see the outside world this summer! Fingers Crossed!