Friday, February 11, 2011

Shirt to Dress, Part 1

I got into the sewing mood yesterday with the valances, so I started another project. My birthday is coming up (February 22), and I'm going dancing. SO! I thought I could make a sweet dress for the occasion.

I bought this shirt in 2007 for a 70's party. I accidentally went as a 70's office employee, not a disco diva. Fail.
Sorry for all that extra space above our heads. I'm on Zane's Mac and I don't know how to crop photos. But look how cute we are! Young love. We still have it (our youth and our love). Oh, and it was during this retreat that we decided to get married. We asked/told my parents the next day. 

Anyways, when I bought that shirt, I knew I'd someday change it into something wonderful. 

Today was that day. 

Kind of. 

First I cut off the sleeves and collar. I turned it over (for the buttons to go along my back) and created a v-neck collar. 

Then I decided the v-neck was not going to work out. I cut along the seams of the sleeves and created a piece for the bodice.

For the skirt piece - I used the main part of the shirt, buttons on the back, and folded the top down (including the part I had already cut in a v-neck shape).
That's a piece of elastic from my fitted sheet that I used in the valance yesterday. I threaded it through the top seam (which is on the right of this picture, because this picture is sideways. I don't know how to rotate it because I'm on a Mac). 

Skip a few steps. I forget to take pictures when I get in the zone. I just sew and sew until my eyes pop out of my head. Luckily Zane came home and made dinner, or I might have inadvertently starved myself. The zone is dangerous. 

This is where I ended tonight. I made straps, attached the bodice to the skirt. 
Lookin' cute! I love that elastic waist!

This documents 4.5 hours of sewing. I kept running into problems and having to solve them. It was strenuous on my brain. That's what happens when you jump into a project with little to no planning. Story of my life. 

Though I solved many small problems, there were some that drove me to take a break:
1. Minor problem: I need darts in the bodice around my bust. You can kind of see it flapping around my armpit in this picture. Pinning the darts will be hard...I might have to get Zane to help me. Muahaha. 

2. BIG PROBLEM!!! The shirt isn't as wide as my hips! That's my badonkadonk. Though I do like that country song about a honkytonk badonkadonk, I don't want to be showing off mine on my birthday! At least, not in this way...I mean, not at all!

I have some extra fabric pieces (the forearms of the sleeves), so I'm planning on making a panel of sorts to go in there. It'll look amateur, but that's exactly what I am. I'm hoping the busy pattern of the fabric will help blend the weird patchwork. I might have avoided this problem with more planning...too late now!

But, I'm taking suggestions if anyone has a better idea of what to do here. I still have hope for this dress, and I can't give up now. 

P.S. I wish you a speedy recovery from the trauma of seeing my backside. I apologize, but it was a necessary evil. 


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