What was it with the ’80s-Early ’90s and weird fake sewn-in layers?
The fake vest on this very ’80s romper doesn’t even go around to the back. It’s just sewn in to the shoulder seams.
Why not just make a matching vest, ’80s? Grownups can handle layering. I promise.
Before we dive into this refashion, I want to take a moment to thank my friend Katie from PannerPete Vintage for gifting me this romper, along with a GIANT bag of other refashionables.
Going to thrift stores right now feels a little scary with the spike in cases we’ve been seeing here in SC. So, in giving me her old vintage inventory/rejects, she’s done me a huge solid that will help keep me safe & healthy this summer (as I won’t have to go thrifting for stuff to refashion as much)!
Now, let’s refashion a romper!
I inspected my new romper closely and discovered a couple of…ahem…issues.
Despite all my laundering wizardry, I just could NOT get those stains to budge!
When thrifting for potential refashionables, stains like these are usually a dealbreaker. However, I thought this romper had a lot of potential, so I decided to attempt to work around them.
Wish me luck!
First off, I unpicked the romper’s shoulder seams to remove that vest.
The sleeves quickly followed.
The sleeves were now gone, but keep in mind, those grody pit stains were still very much present on the body of the romper. :/
So, I did the only thing I could think of to remedy the situation, and sliced the armholes open a little to remove the stained parts.
To do this, I used my french curve & rotary cutter on my self-healing cutting mat. If you don’t have these things, you could just eyeball it using scissors while trying to keep to a curve.
This action will have repercussions, friends. My armholes are going to be pretty big, and since this piece fits me just fine, I won’t be able to take it in on the sides to make the armholes smaller.
I figured I could just wear a camisole under the finished piece, and that it would still look okay even with the larger armholes.
That shoulder stain tho…
But what to do about that pesky shoulder stain?!?
I had a few options here. I could just make the romper strapless or one-shouldered (thus removing the shoulder and stain altogether). I could add a collar fashioned from the original vest collar (and almost did).
OR I could add some cute little epaulette-ish things to the shoulders to cover the stain. <—What I did
To do this, I harvested the bottom corners from the original vest.
First, I measured each corner to make sure they were even, and marked them with tailor’s chalk.
Then, I cut!
I laid one of the triangles on the shoulder seam, positioning it to cover the stain. I ended up having to trim them both down a little to get it juuuust right.
I pinned them in place, and stitched them to the front side of the romper.
Now to put those shoulders back together!
I turned my romper inside-out and pinned my newly-triangled front piece to the back piece.
That added triangle piece made for a really thick seam!
I sewed my shoulders down sllllowwwwwly and carrrrrrrefullllllly to avoid breaking a needle.
And now that stain is hidden away!
But I’m not done here yet!
Remember those adorable buttons from the front of the vest?
I added them to my epaulette-ish things (don’t worry, I put the other two in my button stash)!
I stitched the button through the entire shoulder to tack down the triangle and keep that stain from ever being seen again!
Now that my shoulders were reassembled, I was ready to close up the raw edges on those armholes.
First, I pinned the raw edges under.
Then, I stitched them down.
When that was done, I tacked the bottom of each armhole down a smidge.
Now for the legs!
I tried my romper on again, and used a safety pin to mark where I wanted to cut the legs to make to them shorter (adding a couple of inches for the hem).
Then, I gave them each a new hem!
I trimmed off the side ties from the original vest and stitched them together to make a sash in a flash!
I was ready to romp in my new refashion!
When Mr. Refashionista saw me in my romper, he said I looked like I was about to go watch a tennis game “but on a grass court”.
While the armholes were larger than I would have liked, I think they still work with the overall look of this piece. Plus, they’re built-in air conditioning!
I’m actually happy the original piece had that shoulder stain, as those subtle shoulder details are my favorite part of this piece!
All in all I’m quite pleased with this refashion and think it’ll get a lot of wear this summer!