When I was 20 I went inter-railing and had my rucksack packed with stuff, including vintage dresses (3) and floral McHammer style pants (it was the 80s), leggings and lots of teeshirts, plimsoles and sandals…… and a few basics. We met lots of wonderful people and I loved it all. I remember meeting one girl, who had a much smaller and simpler rucksack, metal water canteen (like from the army) and who seemed to have a total 2 jersey skirts and 3 tee shirts and each combination looked so effortless, and ready for all occasions….. and funnily enough when I was working on this skirt, and how to make it multi-functional, I thought of her (and how much I would like to inter-rail again….)
The skirt was in the charity shop, beside a rail of 1euro coats (seriously a whole rail)…. I adored the charcoal shade, and I wasn’t sure what it was, skirt or dress. Its a bias cut, and had a half bubble effect at the front hem (elastic was sewn inside on the front hem), and there was one belt loop at the back – I tried it both ways, as a dress and skirt and it seemed to be both.
I had a feeling it was a never-worn-sale-buy, and when I took it apart, sure enough, there was a green sticker that some stores use on the label, and no wear signs at all. The skirt was a zip to the side, and both side seams sat a bit more towards the front, with the right side more so. The back had two long darts, and a belt loop over one.
I put it on the mannequin a few ways, and finally decided on
- taking out the elastic on the front hem, and re-heming the lining, and the front of skirt
- make one strap which would tie with buttons, and go to a v shape at the front
- to put a second belt loop on the back, over the other dart
- to put a button hole under each one
- to have a loop on the inside middle front of the skirt and to run the straps through this
I took some fabric from the belt (nearly half) and folded it over and sewed to make the strap. I got the flattest buttons from the button box and used the super buttonhole maker (but still lined up one button-hole slightly off). I undid the front loop and redid it. Originally I didn’t like how the stitching showed, but after finishing, I also noticed that sewing the loop to the facing didn’t secure it enough, and also the dress sat up at the front, when I put the dress backwards, it sat level at the hem, so I resewed the loop with more even stitches, as at least its was now to the back! The waist darts of the skirt, now acting as chest/bust darts!
I have been wearing it as a dress and I love it….I prefer it un-belted but have the option to belt it, and I am still figuring a top for if I wear it as a skirt (thinking of maybe a white vest or a wrap top?)
I am rather chuffed to have a new summer dress as a few of my summer clothes got re-donated as they don’t really go with grey hair (creamy yellows). I am finally getting used to the new hair colour as its now evening out and growing longer, as I love the texture of my own hair (dyed hair has the texture of a fake wig) but as I only really see myself in the mirror twice a day, it still takes getting used to seeing photos of myself!