Subscribe to updates via email!

Green with Envy: Ruched Shoulder Dress Refashion

Halt(er)! Who Goes there?
Feelin' Fierce in Fuschia

When I first found this dress for one little dollar at the thrift store, I giggled a little. 

I mean, it’s soooooo not me!

diy ruched shoulder dress refashion before
a purtian maid????

The collar!  the cuffs!  The length!  The ties!  Those cutesie little puffy sleeves! The…horror!

Now…I’m sure some of you out there find the cutesie cuffs/puffs/collar thing to be absolutely adorable.  If you are one of those people, you should probably stop reading about now.

Seriously…because, it’s all about to go buh-bye, y’all.

removing side ties from dress
Xing out those stupid ties!

I will never, never, NEVER condone any garment that has those absurd ties that end in a bow above my butt (I have a distaste for bows in general).

Next, I needed to remove some of that length. 

I’m fine with maxi dresses, but this one is 100% polyester, and not too breathable for a scorching SC summer day.

cutting off bottom hem of dress
bye excess length!

Next on my amputation list was the lacy collar and sleeve caps. 

With the help of my seam ripper, off they came!

removing lace collar
removed collar and sleeve caps
Doilies in waiting???

I paused for a moment before ripping off those puffy sleeves. 

I was hoping just removing the lacy stuff would be enough to save the dress, but sadly, the puffy sleeves were not for me.  I’m just not a puffy kind of gal.

Away they went (with the help of my seam ripper)!

removed sleeves from dress
puff daddies…er…babies

Now, I was left with a bunch of raw edges around the neck and armholes that needed to be pinned in preparation for sewing.

An pin them I did!

pinned neckline for dress
pinned and prepped

Then, I stitched them down.

stitching down neckline of dress
whirrrrrrrr! whrrrrrrrrr!!!!

After sewing those down, I hemmed the raw edge of the skirt in much the same manner. 

To ensure that your hem’s seam is even, use your sewing gauge to measure the seam allowance before each pin goes in.

measuring hem for dress
Hi! I’m your friendly sewing gauge!

Now my dress was just about done. 

I pressed my new hem (always do this!  remember!), but still wasn’t completely pleased.  The top of the dress was a bit too plain.

plain top of dress
a little blah

I like nice, clean, simple lines…but I decided to add a bit of detail. 

I liked the way the ruching looked at the bustline of this dress, and decided to borrow this design element at the collarbone area of the dress with some hand-ruching of my own.

To ruche the shoulders, I simply hand stitched a straight line with a wide stitch where I wanted the ruching to be, pulled the thread to create gathers, and then tied it off.

hand ruching shoulders of dress
hot ruching action!

The ruching was EXACTLY what my dress needed.  Now I had a cute dress to wear for brunch that made many a woman green (forgive the pun!) with envy!

Green with Envy: A DIY Ruched Shoulder Dress Refashion After
brunchtime attire

I paired it with my favorite bronze accessories and a cute vintage straw clutch I snagged for a mere buck whilst scouring for future refashions.

Green with Envy: A DIY Ruched Shoulder Dress Refashion After
It IS easy being green!

I enjoyed a verrrrry delicious Bananas Foster French Toast and an equally tasty Bloody Mary at Liberty Tap Room where my fella and I were serenaded by a jazz band. 

A perfect beginning to a perfect Sunday!


Refashionista Green with Envy: A DIY Ruched Shoulder Dress Refashion
Halt(er)! Who Goes there?
Feelin' Fierce in Fuschia