Thursday, October 4, 2012

The Craft Room: Super Simple Dress to Skirt Makeover

Happy Thursday darlings, 

I had a couple inquiries about the skirt from my Tuesday's post, and no, I did not make it myself.  It was actually an old dress I had from Urban Outfitters that I performed a very simple, cinchy makeover on.

Like many of you, I am a gal on a budget that thrifts most of my "new" clothes, shops the Modcloth and UO sales or Target on occasion, and just simply shops my closet...over and over again.  But here's the thing, I have the tendency to wear things to death.  Case and point: that Urban Outfitters bird print tank dress, circa 2009 - which I actually also wore in one of my first blog posts here and this Fossil tote (also 2009).  Both were a site for sore eyes with pilling, tears, stains, loose seams...the whole shebang.  Neither could confidently be worn in their current state.  Really, the before photos here don't do justice to how busted up looking they were.  Total bummer because I still love both of these pieces.  Cue the DIY.  To keep these pieces going for miles to come - I performed a very simple little makeover which required no sewing whatsoever.  

What you need:

A simple old full skirted tank dress like the one below (the kind with two separate materials for the top and bottom and an elasticated waist)
A dirty old tote bag or scrap material.
Fabric glue or glue gun
Safety pin.

These full skirted tank dresses are everywhere (especially in the summertime).  I have owned and gotten rid of many.  As cute as they are, the issue with them is that they are usually constructed with very thin, cheap material on the top that just doesn't hold up.  

Tote bags are also all around because they are just so darn cute and well, easy to tote hence their name...haha. They get dirty so easily though.  

How you create:

Step 1:  Cut the top off the dress about a half inch away from the seam.  Though the skirt part of my dress has a paperbag waistline to it - yours does not need to have this.  A simple elastic waist will do.

Step 2: Glue the excess material down with fabric glue.

Step 3: Make your bow: Cut a square  (mine was 5x5 in.) from off the tote.  Fold back a  quarter inch around all four sides and glue down with your fabric glue.  Cut another piece of material about 4 inches long x 0.5 inches wide, pinch the center of the bow and wrap this smaller piece around the center and glue in the back.

Step 4: With a safety pin, pin the bow on the skirt.  You can sew it on, but I liked the option of being able to move it from the side to the center.

Guess what?  You are finished!  How pain free was that? 

Have a loverly day Darlings!

Love Bunches, 


  1. pretty!! you're super creative, marisa :))

  2. i'm so glad you saved it! it really is adorable, and i love the bow! i'm going to have to try that soon. you're so crafty, i would've just thrown it all away :) xoxo

  3. MArisa, how similar are our shopping habits?!?!!? And I am so in love with the skirt you just reconstructed! I would have worn that dress to death too, but I have to admit, I like it better as a skirt with a darling bow like that! Cute.
    ♥ laura
    the blog of worldly delights
    the shop of worldly delights

  4. You're so cute: Twirl and Enjoy! I had never (silly!) though of just cutting the tank out of those dresses. I see them at the thrifts all the time! Great idea, and extra cute with the bow!

  5. love this DIY, the print on the old dress/new skirt is too lovely to have thrown away! very inspiring. xxx

  6. Oooh! Perfect Tutorial! Such a great idea...thanks for sharing it with us!! :D Hope you have a great day!! xx

  7. What a simple diy, but it really brings new life into an old dress! I have a few old dresses like that that could definitely use some refreshing :) I love the bow detail!

  8. Such a great idea! And the skirt is so lovely! I want to twirl :)

  9. This is such a cool DIY! I'd have just cut the top off the dress and called it good. Because I'm lazy. But this is adorrrbs, love it!

  10. You are so wonderful at DIYs! I hope to get better at sewing soon so I could whip up a pretty skirt just like this :) xoxox

  11. This is great Marisa! Love the bird print. Two of my favourite skirts were dresses to start with. One I bought on the sale rack with the full intention of turning it immediately into a skirt because it was just way too short on me as a dress. I like that you didn't sew the bow on because, as you say, you can move it to the centre, but you can also use it for something completely different like a little brooch on a sweater!


  12. Sooooo cute and easy, I have to try this :))

  13. wonderful, that looks so much better, the bow is adorable

  14. Absolutely great ! I love it !!! And adding this little bow makes the skirt even more cute ! Have a nice weekend dear ! XX Tani

  15. I adore this tutorial, so much! That might the easiest way to turn a dress into a skirt. :)

  16. What a great idea!! LOVE!! Have a great weekend!!

  17. You are a genius, Marisa! That's the coolest way to preserve items that you love and are getting old. I wish I were half as skillful!

    Have a wonderful weekend! ;D


  18. Great job!!!! You always seem to manage doing great things like this!!!

  19. Fun idea! I'll have to keep this in mind next time I go thrifting!

    Whiskey for Breakfast

  20. This is awesome! You have done such an lovely job :) So darn cute <3

  21. Totally awesome blog hop brought me here. Like this DIY a lot. The eco tot looks too cute that if it was mine I wouldn't cut it off. But you turned it into a great bow. Good job :)

    Anh @ Fab 'n Fun

  22. So, so cute! I actually remember wanting that dress from UO but never getting it! I recently saved the top portion of a F21 dress because the skirt part was falling apart. I like clothes that come with minimal sewing or simply seam ripping :) Love how you paired it with the yellow tights- you are just the cutest!

  23. This is so simple and awesome! Love it.

  24. This is so adorable, and such a great idea!! I am definitely going to have to try this out. I love the bird print of this skirt

    1. cute cute cute darling;) i love that bow you added to your new (old) skirtd (dress) really a great idea and the socks/tights/boots combo is amazing too!
      have a wonderful week darling!
      love and kiss,mary


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