Thursday, May 3, 2012

Granny Skirt Refashion

I was searching through the closet at my parents' house this weekend looking for my old prom/homecoming dresses. I had some refashioning ideas and wanted to see what they looked like- I couldn't even remember them! Isn't that sad? 
And I liked high school. 
Unfortunately, I don't see or talk to any of my friends really (even my very best friend from HS, I haven't heard from him since his freshman year of college) so I don't think back too much these days. 
While I was foraging, I came across the ugliest skirt ever.
I can only assume it belonged to my mom (and I do have vague recollections of her in it about 20 years ago) since we were the only women in the home. And you can be sure it wasn't mine. I decided to steal it and refashion it.
mid-calf length. So sexy.
I didn't even tell her I was taking it (sorry, mom!) ... it was for her own good.
I have to absolutely believe that my mom wouldn't be caught dead in the skirt now, but I wasn't taking any chances by alerting her to it's existence. 
I changed the hemline of the skirt + brought the waist in (to make it high waisted) and it turned out to be SUPER stinking cute. I can't wait to wear it all summer. The changes were easy and it only took about 30 minutes total.
I'm going to take a little time to show you how to make a beautiful hem. A hem is the easiest way to alter and change clothing for refashions since they're always rising and falling, so it's important to know. Usually I cheat my hems, making them not-so-pretty, but passable since only I see it. I work about 40-50 hours each week in addition to blogging 5x + keeping our house in good condition. That means I have to take a lot of short cuts! 
But for today I'll actually sew pretty ;)
(1) Cut it. I measured how long I wanted it to fall from my waist (since I decided to make it high waisted rather than hip). Cut the excess off, leaving 1.5 inches extra for seam allowance. The plaid pattern was nice, it gave me a line to cut along! I also removed any buttons that would be in the way of the hem.
(2) Fold it. Turn the skirt inside out. Fold the bottom over (toward the inside) 1/2 inch and pin. Iron to give it a nice, sharp crease. Be careful of the pins, they'll be sharp AND hot once that iron hits them.
(3) Fold it... again. Now, fold it over again 1 inch and pin, ironing once more to give it a good finish.
(4) Hem it. Run it through your machine (or by hand) with a matching thread. Be sure to sew toward the top of the fold, not the bottom where the pins are. I used a white thread so you can see. I always do that. I get a lot of flack for it, but these are tutorials... not products for sale. I want my readers to be able to see what I'm doing! You should use a thread that matches. When in doubt between two shades, use the darker shade.
(5) Waist it. Put the skirt on and pinch the sides evenly until it is properly fitted. Stick a pin through, making sure to put the excess material INSIDE (not outside). Take the skirt off and flip it inside out.
(6) Stitch it. Sew a stitch right down the side of the waist where there is already a seam (stitch in the ditch) so that it lines up. Cut the excess away, staying inside of the seams of the waistband. My skirt was floaty, so I didn't have to do a lot of altering. I only recommend this waist band methods for skirts similar to this one. When the skirt goes on, it just adds another pleat along the side. If you do this with a tight skirt, you'll end up with strange bunching. On a tight skirt, you'd have to continue the seam down, tapering it out as you go to create a clean line along the hip and leg.
(7) Wear it. I'm wearing it here with my VINTAGE RESTORED BAG from yesterday's post. I love that bag. And I love this skirt. Both in time for summer :)


Today is ballet day... and tomorrow is Friday! Almost the weekend, people :) All the best, and as always, thanks for reading! 

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