Totally recycled dress time! Don't worry, it turned out well.

Sharing a dress today made totally of recycled materials--a true upcycle, I guess. Not in a scary way. Not wearing pop cans or anything. Nope, this is a simple dress I made out of a white blouse I've had in the "to upcycle" pile for literally years, and out of this dress, which I made and never really wore.

I felt bad about never liking the dress, so I figured, might as well reuse the parts that I can and make it something I do like. I basically just had to take out the zipper and put the skirt on a new bodice! And I did save the old bodice fabric; maybe I'll use it for linings sometime.

For the new dress, I used a pattern but cut the blouse strategically, reusing the center front and back details. I did remove the buttons and sew the placket closed before I cut--important steps. Here's the "before" on the blouse... I took this photo in 2010! Been waiting for something to do with it.

And, I used my old fave pattern McCall's M5849.

Here it is!

(Forgive the messy hair.) You can see, though, the center back pleats I salvaged.


Ohhhhh, summer dress weather. You never fail to inspire. Simple dresses like this one are perfect when it's super hot out!

(P.S. OMG--is this the third colorblock bodice/skirt dress I've posted this week?!!? It totally is! Weird! It just worked out that way. They are fun!)

27 comments

  1. Super cute! What a great upcycle! I never thought about using patterns for refashioning before. It's like a whole new world...

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    1. Oh, yes, explore it! I love using patterns to upcycle--basically makes the garment just like raw material except often nicer quality or cooler than fabric store selection!

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  2. It turned out great! I have a big pile of clothes to upcycle for when I finish my exams :S

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  3. Super duper cute. You're an inspiration to get back to my thrifting roots...

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  4. Adorable. Might be enough to get me over the past few months of fruitless thrifting experience! We've been on a little break from one another while I recover!

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  5. Wow, this looks so cute and yet you could wear it in an office! Nice. :o)

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  6. WOW! this is awesome! very pretty, you just gave me an idea for a couple un-wearable garments I have :)

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  7. I like this one much better than the original grey dress. And don't worry about posting to much colorblock-dresses: they look really cute on you! I do admire how you are able to recut and transform any piece of clothing!

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    1. Thanks! Yes, I love the two-tone dress!

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  8. You are so freaking cute! Love the dress!

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  9. Great refashion. I love that shirt texture on the dress. Awesome!

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  10. It looks so good! Does it stay up well? It always feels good to work away at that "to refashion pile..." I've been going through mine myself. I think the nice weather is super inspiring.

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    1. Thanks! It stays up okay but I was thinking that a little of the clear sort of sticky elastic that J.Crew and Banana Republic put in their strapless dresses would help, or just maybe some anchoring tape sewn inside the layers to make the top edge more taught. And it's a little loose, so if it were snugger it'd be better. But yes, it stays up just fine. Just, for next time...

      Yes, the nice weather makes it WAY more fun and easy to upcycle into summer dresses! My fave!

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  11. It looks awesome, what a great idea!

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  12. You are so talented! This is an amazing dress, and it fits you so well. Well done!
    -Heather

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  13. the dress is very impressive, well done

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  14. lovely dress Perfect for summer.

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  15. I really enjoy reading your blog, you always look great and I love the way you put your outfits together!

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  16. oh my goodness, that looks absolutely incredible! I love it, you're so talented!

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  17. Wonderful job! So classy and lovely :)

    thejoyfulfox.blogspot.com

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  18. I am still loving they way you remix your patterns. I wish you would put the pattern in the tags so it would be easy to click and see all the other places you used the same pattern.

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    1. Thanks! It's a great idea, at least for the patterns I use a lot. I may have to go back and add them, thanks!

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