When I decided to make a kimono a few weeks ago, this floral skirt from the last clothes swap was a strong candidate, but I ended up going with a different skirt instead. I couldn't help but get an Asian vibe from this print though, so I wanted to do something reminiscent of a kimono, but with a twist.
I chopped off the bottom foot or so, salvaged those two buttons, and rehemmed the skirt. Now, I could have stopped there and had a perfectly serviceable skirt, but I wanted to take it a step further.
I put the shortened skirt on my dress form and started playing with the fabric trimmed from the bottom of the skirt. I cut it in half along the back seam and draped each piece over the shoulders of the dress form. A few pins later, I had a plan. I overlapped about 8 inches of the bottom hem of one piece with the bottom hem of the other piece and sewed them together. This will be the center back of my new dress.
Then I flipped it inside-out and sewed about 8 inches up the raw edges where this fabric was cut from the skirt (what will become my side seams). The un-sewn section above this seam will be an armhole.
Next, I finished the edges of the armholes.
I attached my bodice to my skirt, using a zigzag along the elastic waistband in the back to maintain stretchability.
Each shoulder got a few pleats to gather the extra fabric. This will make the sleeves not be so droopy.
And finally, I added a few snaps to close up the front of the bodice. I also reattached one of the salvaged buttons as a decorative touch over the stitching from the snap.
I love how it turned out!
The Asian influence is there, but not in an overwhelming way.
To bring out the red in the center of the flowers, I paired my new dress with a pair of laser-cut acrylic earrings I got on Etsy and my red polka dot flats, thrifted a million years ago.
The looser, flowier top makes this dress really easy to wear. It's so comfy!
I'm so glad I didn't just stop with a shorter skirt. I mean, I could always just wear a sweater over the dress to make it look like a skirt, if I'm in the mood.
I feel like the slight high-waisted-ness makes this dress quite flattering also. If not, well, just let me keep thinking that, please.