Friday, December 9, 2011

Turtleneck Refashion

It's been a while! October was a crazy month and I was in a bit of a funk in November. It snowed Halloween night and it has stuck around. I was totally NOT feeling fall this year.

Anyway, I just finished a dress for Annaleigh and had to share! I'm not 100% loving how it turned out. There are a few things I would have changed about it, but it works. Plus, I'm sure no one else can see all the flaws I see.

At the end of last winter our Wal-Mart had turtlenecks clearanced out at $1 and a few days they were doing 50% off all clearance. I ended up grabbing a 5T in the hopes I'd one day be able to do something with it. I'm not a huge fan of turtlenecks so it was a refashion from the beginning. I decided a few days ago to make Annaleigh a new dress with it.

I started out deconstructing it. I took the neck and sleevess off. Obviously, a 5T was going to need to be resized to fit my almost 1 year old (holy heck how did that happen?). Here is what it looked like....

I grabbed a dress in her size to use as a size guide. With the dress laying on top of the turtleneck, I pinned where I needed to sew my new seem.

I wish I hadn't done the next step. I folded the flair of the dress in thinking I wouldn't need the flair once the ruffles were added.

In hindsight, I think this would have helped the dress have a better fit than it does. Oh well, It still turned out decent. While I had the dress laying there I also trimmed down the arm neck and shoulder area of the shirt. Here is what I had at the end.

I didn't take pictures of this step, but I then cut out 3 strips of my skirt fabric. The strips were 4 3/4 in wide (I wish I had made them longer) and the length was long enough to wrap around the shirt twice. I folded the fabric in half and ruffled it. This took a little trial and error. There are tons of tutorials on how to ruffle fabric, but it still took me a while to get the hang of it. My machine doesn't have a straight stitch that doesn't automatically backstitch when you start sewing so I had to start sewing without my fabric under the needle. I should have taken pictures of this, but I got caught up in the moment. I also set my tension to the highest it would go and the stitch length to the longest setting. My machine still didn't really ruffle at that much so I held the thread where it comes off the spool to create a little extra tension. Once the strips were sewn, I pulled the threads to create an even more dramatic ruffle.

To sew on the ruffles, I first pinned and sewed them to the shirt upside down.

Once it is sewn in place you want to fold it down, pin and sew again. This creates a finished look. I definately recommend pinning this and not just trying to wing it. It helps insure you are staying straight and that the ruffle lays nicely. I tried not pinning it and it was a pain. I  repeated this for each layer of ruffle.

I again used a shirt in her size to figure out where to sew a new seem for the sleeves and how long they needed to be. Again, I  got way into it and didn't take pictures. Reattach them to the shirt. I wasn't sure exactly what I wanted to do with the collar. In the end, I opted for a cowl, type look. I cut one side of the original turtleneck, finished the raw edges and reattached the collar to the shirt. And there you have it...

I know, I cut off her head. It is insane trying to get a decent picture of this girl!