I picked up this blue and white polka dot dress on a recent thrifting excursion. I absolutely loved the fabric, and the tag was the half-off color of the day, making it a mere $3.50, so into the cart it went. It looked far too small, despite the size on the label, so I didn't even both trying it on. "I'll just make a top out of the skirt," I thought to myself. But lo and behold, after a car ride home and a trip through the laundry, I introduced the dress to Rosy for some before pictures, and it fit! That elastic-ruched panel in the back is really deceptive on a hanger!
Of course, there were a few drawbacks I had noticed before purchasing the dress - weird faux double-breasted buttons, ginormous shoulder pads, a missing zipper pull, a small hole...
First, to remove those shoulder pads and buttons. Done and done.
Then the super poofy sleeves were trimmed off. I left about an inch of sleeve fabric attached to the body, then folded it inward as a facing for my armholes.
A tiny hole on the front of the skirt was barely noticeable, but rather unfortunate in its placement. A simple patch snipped from one of the sleeves will cover that right up and also hide fairly well in the pleats of the skirt.
I trimmed 4 inches of fabric from the skirt and followed it up with a good-sized hem, making the dress about 6 inches shorter than it had been originally.
And finally, time to tackle that broken zipper. The good news is the zipper itself was perfectly functional. It was only missing its pull tab. I had to use a safety pin to get it zipped and unzipped during the trying on process. To replace the missing tab, I dove into my jewelry making stash and came up with this thrifted skull necklace I had previously disassembled. I used my flat nose pliers to open one of the rings and detach one skull from the chain.
I inserted the ring into the zipper slider and closed it back up again with my pliers.
I think these are my favorite type of refashions - a garment that already fits but just needs a few tweaks to be updated. It's practically instant gratification!