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What to do with an Old Graduation Gown: Upcycle it into a Dress!

SPRING!!!!!!!!
Graduating to New Levels of Lame

Hi all.  Wow.  Lots ‘n lots of comments on that last post. First off, thank you for your kind words after my last post!

I’m feeling much better now, and have taken steps to keep feeling much better/ possibly betterer.  Don’t worry about me.  

For my birthday, I work up at 3:30 (WHOA!)am to do a refashion on this old graduation gown I thrifted for $1.

If you have an old graduation gown gathering dust in your closet, here’s a great way to upcycle it!

What to do with an Old Graduation Gown before
Remember me?

I snipped out those sleeves, as temps were finally going to reach into the 80s.  

Usually I don’t advise this as it will make closing up your armholes a little harder, and you run the risk of making them way too wide, but I really didn’t feel like spending the hour+ it would take to get these off.  

Also, because this thing is so big and would need to be taken in so much, it wouldn’t be such an issue.

cutting off sleeve
Snipsnipsnip!

Once this was done, the gown graduated to my dress form for a fitting:

pinning graduation gown on dress form
Much fit. Very wow.

I stitched down each side on my machine, then serged the raw edges.

For those of you who keep telling me the tension is off, can you tell me how to fix it?  :)
For those of you who keep telling me the tension is off, can you tell me how to fix it? 🙂

Next, I closed up those raw (and rapidly-fraying) armholes.  

It was actually a pretty finicky business.  I really should have properly unpicked the sleeves, then sewed the armholes, then taken it in.  But in the end, it worked out fine.

pinning armhole
Pin. Pin. Pin.

These went under the needle (but not serger, of course) as well.

Only a couple more steps!

I hacked off some of the length to make this graduation gown look a little less graduation-y:

cutting off bottom of graduation gown
ChopChopChop!

My new dress got a new hem.

Pin, then stitch!
Pin, then stitch!

But I managed to accidentally stitch one of the front flappy things down the wrong way!  :/

Just a lil unpick/restitch!
Just a lil unpick/restitch!

Next, I just needed something to give my new frock a bit more of a waist.  I took that bottom scrap and sewed it into a fabric tube/sash.

Check out that graduation gown now! You can’t even tell what it used to be, can you?

What to do with an Old Graduation Gown after

I spent my birthday with some lovely friends.  Sorry there aren’t any pics, as I wasn’t in a very pic-y mood that night.

close up of half of jilllian's face
As evidenced by my partial participation in this one. #METAPHOR

So…there ya go.  Til’ next time…

Cheers!

What to do with an Old Graduation Gown featured image before and after
SPRING!!!!!!!!
Graduating to New Levels of Lame
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