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Satin Lapel Dress to Blazer Refashion for Boss Babes

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As I flicked through the $1 racks at one of my favorite thrift stores, I initially passed this piece over.

refashionista Dress to Blazer Refashion before image
Spoiler Alert: I went back for it.

I think I actually had something similar to one of these in the late ’90s/Early Aughts (because every 17-year-old needs a suit?), and that it came with a matching skirt, which was pretty much covered by the top blazer/dress thing AND a matching pair of pants (Because, if you’re going to dress like a teenage stenographer, you want choices!).

I went back to this dress/blazer thing because of this:

satin lapel closeup

Those satin lapels & cuffs have such a nice lux look & texture, don’t they? And I love that deep reddish purple hue!

Unfortunately, it didn’t fit me and the sleeves were way too long (or are my arms just too short?). Also, the length of this piece was just awkward.

In other words, this dress was begging for a refashion, and I would let it beg no more!

For starters, I got rid of those bulky pads.

refashionista shoulder pads
Just pick ’em out!
refashionista removed shoulder pads
What am I going to do with all of these shoulder pads now that I’m back at this?!?!

Next, I addressed the length

refashionista refashion cut off length

Then, I began the taking in process.

refashionista refashion taking in pinning
First you pin!
refashionista refashion taking in sewing
…then you whirrr!

I cut off the excess material with my pinking shears and then addressed the bottom.

Now, I could have just made a straight hem along the bottom and have been done with it.

But here’s what I did instead: 🙂

I folded the front edge of each side into a triangle, measuring to make sure they were both even.

refashionista sewing blazer

Then, as I worked my way pinning along the back bottom hem, I folded the triangles under, tucked them in, and sewed it all down!

refashionista pinning bottom blazer hem
Fabric Origami

This does two things.

  1. It gives the front of the blazer a nicer shape.
  2. Having the fabric folded like this weighs those front points down, giving the blazer a more couture-ish drape.

The only things left to deal with were those too-long sleeves!

I folded them over and pinned them like so:

refashionista taking up sleeves
Sleeve me alone!

Then, I stitched them down, which was fussy work, as you can see below.

refashionista altering blazer sleeve
This was as finicky as it looks.

Once I was done, I snipped off the doubled-up fabric so it didn’t add bulk to the bottom of my sleeves.

You can see how I turned the sleeve inside-out, which means the raw edge faced the outside.

My reasoning behind this was:

  1. The raw edge was totally covered by the cuff after I tacked it down.
  2. I didn’t want that raw edge on my skin, as I thought it might be itchy/annoying.

After I tacked the cuffs down, my new blazer was ready to take a meeting with my friend, Phillip!

refashionista Dress to Blazer Refashion after image
Feeling oh-so-boss!

I’m really happy with how this one shaped up, friends! Looking at it now, I can’t believe I initially had any doubts at all!

refashionista Dress to Blazer Refashion blazer close up
Svelte, no?

Phillip is the Director of Digital Experience at our local library (Yay Libraries!), and we chatted about some pro-bono marketing work I’m doing for them (because who needs free time, really?) at The War Mouth.

refashionista working
Girl, you better work.

While we came for the meeting, we stayed for the $5 martinis!

war mouth martini

We even ran into our friend (and local celebrity), Larry Hembree, who’s working on a new play!

refashionista with Larry hembree
Love these guys!


refashionista Dress to Blazer Refashion blazer main image
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