Happy New Year, Everybody!
Around Christmastime, a friend of mine got a text message from his boss. He said he had boxes of vintage women’s clothing and accessories that he didn’t want anymore and wondered if his Refashionista friend would like to take a look at them.
I did. Oh yes. I did.
I ended up scoring some AMAZING vintage formalwear, kimonos, bell bottoms, and accessories!
I was particularly excited about this ’70s formal dress.
That neckline tho! Amirite? WOWZA!
Other than that, this dress was a little too big, and I wasn’t digging that huge long skirt either.
I know some of you are thinking, “Don’t you DARE remove any of that length!”
While this frock photographs really well, yards and yards of scratchy polyester don’t look quite so glamorous in person.
I liked the tag though.
I laid the dress out on my living room floor.
It had a most impressive wingspan.
I then laid one of my favorite and best-fitting little black dress on top of it.
You can see where I’ve outlined the smaller dress in chalk.
I cut along the chalked line, and that’s where the finicky bit began.
I wanted this dress to fit absolutely PERFECTLY, so I actually ended up pinning this onto myself.
It required twisting into positions my yoga instructor would be very proud of.
This took a LONG time to get right.
The fabric was stretchy and tough to get to align correctly on each side. But after a good bit of tweaking, I felt it was ready to go under the needle.
This is all wrong, but it worked out. 🙂 Since my pins were facing the wrong way after I used myself as a dress form, I rolled the other side up and put it to the side. Luckily my machine is made to work for quilting, so it has a big enough space to handle my slackness.
Once each side was taken in, I needed to even out my bottom hem.
Since the back half of me is larger than the front half of me, it went askew in the fitting process. No worries!
And here’s the end result!
I’m quite happy with this one!
But wait…there’s more!
Is anyone else thinking what I’m thinking?
But wait! As it was slightly chilly, I covered up in another one of my sweet finds from my friend’s boss…
I had a blast ringing in the new year with my best pals.
196 thoughts on “A New Years’ Eve 1970s Formal Dress Refashion”
Wow! No words. Just wow. I’m looking forward to 2016 with you.
I’m so glad you are back! I haven’t checked since before Christmas and had almost given up on you, when I checked today, I have eleven posts to check out! I love how this dress turned out. It is so classy.
You. Look. Stunning! Great refashion on such a voluminous dress!! Can’t believe it’s the same one.
This is probably one of my favorite refashions you’ve done so far! I love it!
The dress is STUNNING! I’ve missed seeing new refashions. So glad to see you back and very MUCH looking forward to a post-a-day.
Hello! I’ve just found your blog and I love it.
I’m looking forward to reading about your new adventures in 2016. Have a great New Year.
Lots of love!
Gorgeous dress redo…you wear it well! I’m behind on my reading and just learned there will be a new post every day….yay! I knew 2016 was going to be great and this just proves me right. I love your work!
Happy New Year, Jillian! Another great refashion. Looking forward to your daily refashions!
This dress is stunning, and I’m looking forward to your daily posts!
LOVE this dress. So pretty, and your fitting is spot on. The original was beautiful (though ill-fitting) to begin with but the after is one of my favorites
Over-the-top fabulousness! This dress oozes New Years Eve glam perfectly, front & back. Brava, chica!
Stunning and good luck with the challenge!
I think this is one of my favorites, and I am so glad to see you will be posting more. I love this blog!
Great!!! can’t wait.
OMG! I love this dress. You hit the jackpot with this batch of vintage clothing. Nice work!
I absolutely adore this refasion!!!
And I look forward to reading a lot of you this year (and turn it into action as well :-))
Thank you for your labour!!!!.You inspire me!!!
The dress is fantastic…can’t wait to see what you do next…
Can’t wait for all your posts in 2016!!
When discussing the discrepancy between your front and rear hem. I thought surely you must use a floor standing chalk hem marker?
Looking forward to 2016 and all your new pieces.
I have hoping you would post soon, and it was like Christmas to hear that we will get 366 posts to enjoy. I’m so happy to have found your blog, have your humor and inspiration. Yes, my machine goes “whirrr” too. Lol. Thanks, Jillian!!
I’m giddy from the idea of getting to “visit” with you every day of 2016. Woo hoo!
Awesome job on the dress and I am SO looking forward to 366 posts from you – sounds like a great variety – EXCITING!!!
Love it and love the back. It really adds beauty to it! You look great wearing it!
Wow! Even the back is beautiful!
I think you need to rename your Challenge to ‘Super Challenge’ !! I’m excited to join you on this journey. L O V E what you did with this one front and back. Great Job !!
Fabulous! Someone wants to give me a box of vintage clothes? um, let me think about it YES! Looking forward to all the fashions, refashions, tidbits and giggles in 2016.
Yay! Beautiful refashion. I am so looking forward to daily posts from you in 2016!
Thank you are amazing, I’ve just found your blog and I can’t wait for your next post
Absolutely perfect!! Stunning!!
I LOVE this blog and I am SO excited to see what you have for us in 2016. You are an inspiration and you are making this clumsy woman want to learn to sew. Thanks for the inspiration, tips, entertainment and expanding my horizons. Happy New Year!
Love this refashion! And yes, [email protected]! And you look gorgeous in it. Every DAY you will post??? Wow, I will be looking forward to them.
That is a great refashion!
Looking forward to your daily emails. Love love love the Fashion Dog!
Ma-gni-fi-que ! Très belle réalisation et bonne année.
You look mahvelous (done in my best Billy Crystal voice).
Brave woman with your daily posts! You might consider signing up for the AtoZ Challenge on the 25th of this month – it is a nearly every day blog challenge beginning April 1st. I would love to see another fashionista/seamstress participating.
I’ll be following your 2016 journey …
This one is the best yet I’ve seen.. I’ve been following since 2011 Feb.
Excited to see your new creations in 2016!
Utterly fabulous! Jillian is back! Hurray!
This re-do is especially beautiful. As always, I admire your vision and talents. Thanks for sharing! Wishing you a delightful new year.
Wowza! Love what you did! Can’t wait to see what else was in that box and what you’ll do with it!
Happy New Year, to you too! My challenge is to refashion a Vintage Coat! Wish me luck! I will send a picture of the finished project!
Yes Yes Yes. That’s the best refashion you made so far. Can’t wait to see more from you because you’re great inspiration for me.
The new year’s dress was positively stunning. Looking forward to following you in 2016.
Happy new year and hello from Finland 🙂
Awesome dress refashion. Look forward to your blog a day again and hope I can take part in some of your challenges.
Happy New Year, looking forward to the daily posts.x
Beautiful dress, you did such a great job! I admit I was hoping you’d keep the length, but it looks even better on you short.
I love this blog, I can’t wait to read a post every day! Here’s to a great 2016 full of refashions!
Poppy | http://poppyallanorma.com
You are my idol!
What is “LBD”?
Ha! I’m wondering that too.
It actually just hit me, maybe it stands for little black dress?
Hâte de voir toutes ces transformations super sympas :-), belle nouvelle année également
A great refashion!! Looking forward to your daily posts!! Maybe a book in your future??
Great, great, great !!! For the challenge. Very beautiful refashion this dress…
Yippeeeee yay! I love the dress and am super happy that I will be able to see your fantastic work every day of the year. My nine year old daughter and I absolutely L O V E your blog! You are amazing and make our day that bit brighter. Thanks!
OMG I LIKE THE THINGS YOU MAKE BUTH…….. I LIKE YOU TO….YOUR SO FUNNY.
Wow! Really like this refashion! The end result dress is stunning!
Best Refashion EVAH!!!!! Can’t wait to see more!
Another winner. Excited about your new platform for everyday posting and what you have in mind.
Wooo hooo!!! You’re back in full fashionista force for 2016, awesome! I’m excited to be inspired by your creations (and candid posts).
You should have a tv show or do YouTube videos.
Happy New Year! I love the new dress, look forward to sharing 2016 with you.
Hi, I just love that makeover!! Love your blog as well. Greetings from Finland =)
Oh yeah! Way to ring in the new year! That is Beautiful! And much more wearable length.
Wowsa!!!! This is fabulicious!!!!!!
Gurrrrrrl – you are a bad ass bitch! I can’t wait to read EVERY.SINGLE.POST.
YAY for us refashionistafans!
You just made my leap year! Love the dress and can’t wait to check back tomorrow!
So excited to read this! I think I just scared my husband by squealing when I saw this post 😉 What a find to kick off an exciting challenge year. Look forward to seeing all your posts.
If I didn’t see it I wouldn’t believe it. terrific refashion.
Best refash ever! It will be great to see you everyday!
YAY!!!! Love your refashions, your wit and your obvious love of life and friends.
BTW…that black dressing is stunning…
Holy moly, that’s awesome!
Yes! Can’t wait! And Happy New Year!
LOVE this! So looking forward to seeing 366 posts! Hoping you can inspire me to start some refashions of my own!
Nice job! Love the ‘new’ dress…! Looking forward to the next 366 dresses in the New Year! Yeah!
Wow! This turned out great – you looked amazing in it – perfect fit.
Love it! Did you save the extra material for another project?
Love how this dress turned out. You look so terrific in it. I look forward to this upcoming year, I have missed your daily posts. Michele. http://Www.vintagethrifter51.com
What an amazing score! I love this refashion. I found your blog several months ago. I have a sewing machine but have never learned to use it and am not sure where I’d find the time to do this but I definitely plan to try. Thanks for sharing!!
There are so many tutorials online, not to mention most likely local classes too. You seem interested, so do what’s important to you, and don’t let time go past you regretting what you didn’t do. If you don’t want to sew, which I think you do, then consider giving your machine to someone else.
I wish you the best, no matter what you decide!
What a lucky thing to fall in your lap, a box of free vintage clothing. Wow! I’m jealous, but not as much so as I am excited to be able to see all your fabulous work in the present, instead of seeing it all in the past — which is fun too!
Speaking of seeing, though, it’s kind of hard to see your amazing black refashion against the dark background of that picture. Are there contrasting light and dark backgrounds you can stand in front of for these?
Hope my comments of use and I look forward to your posts! Yay!
Of course I meant this last comment for Jillian yet it posted here. Ahhhhhhhh!!!! Danged phone! Can I use that excuse for all my mistakes?
Hooray! You look beautiful. I absolutely love this refashion. Looking forward to seeing many more posts from you in 2016.
Your ‘new’ dress is lovely! Looking forward to seeing your 2016 challenge, I started reading your blog when you did your original refashion every day for a year challenge 😀
Stunning re-fashion and that dress is completely channelling Breakfast at Tiffany’s! Looking forward to seeing what else you have up your sleeve, or not, for the rest of the year! Enjoy your gorgeous vintage items Karen x
Ohmigosh, this post makes me SO happy!
Yeah!!!!!!! Great news!!! 🙂
I cannot wait for this year! I got my very first sewing machine for Christmas a week ago. I cannot wait for a daily dose of inspiration!!! Thank you for being you!
So excited! Your posts have a little far between lately.
I am SO excited about this! Your original 366 day challenge is what inspired me to sew 🙂
Yeah a post everyday – what a great New Years gift, thanks Gillian – I look forward to sharing 2016 with you.
I just discovered your sight yesterday. What perfect timing 🙂 Looking forward to the coming year
Excited for your 2016 challenge – to my benefit 😉
The black dress turned out fabulous!
Now that is rather a fabulous refashion and what a haul! I’m certainly looking forward to your 2016 posts 🙂
That’s the best news I’ve heard all year! ( so far) Thanks!
FAB YOU LOUs !!!!!!!!!!
Every day posting will be awesome and I appreciate how much WORK will go into doing that! Planning, cutting, pinning, sewing and picture taking along with the creative thinking part is pretty time consuming!
What fun! I admire your creative vision and look forward to your re-creations this coming year.
Yayyyy! After binging on the 2011 challenge, I’m happy that I get to be here for this one in real time!
gorgeous job! And I look forward to 366 posts…. yay!!!
Yay! I have missed you!
Beautiful! Always excited to see what you have done.
I’m always amazed at your awesome refashions!
What a beautiful refashion! You look stunning! I love the shoes!!!!
Hooray! It’ll be great getting updates so often! Lovely refashion, too ❤
The dress looks great & so do you :). I’m looking forward to reading your daily posts. Good wishes & happy new year!
I will be posting daily on my blog for just one week (tba) in 2016 – baby steps. Rest of the year I’m sticking with weekly content.
This is the best refashion I’ve seen – ever.
Yippee! It is going to be a great year! Good luck with this new daily challenge.
Great job with this dress!!!
I agree some of that fabric had to go. The from fitting LBD is darling, great job!
Yay!!! Great news!! Thank you!!
Love this dress! Can’t wait to read the daily post!! 🙂
Happy New Year! Glad you are back to posting. I am looking forward to my fix every day.
Congratulations on your ” new finds” and your refashioned piece. Love that fearlessness “snip snip!!”
Glad to see you back rearing to go!
Happy New Year!
I will be watching!
Love Jillian 🙂
Love this dress, glad you are back you are such an inspiration!
Wow! You knocked this one out of the park. What a great find!
happy, happy, happy!!! Love your work!
Great job and super news on your 2016 plans. I love your blog. You are worth the wait.
You rock! I love seeing your ideas and transformations. It is inspiring and fun. Happy 2016!
Rock on! You are creative and entertaining ! Can’t wait to see what you do next
Your dresses to long tops, dyeing techniques, and no fuss re purposing are just great! I look forward to your posts this year!
This dress suits you SO much and is absolutely perfect! LOVE LOVE LOVE it!
I love this refashion! And as I just discovered you this past year and promptly went through every single refashion from beginning to end over the course of about a month and then went through withdraw that the new ones were more sporadic, I am beyond excited to be able to see something new to inspire me every day!!! YAAAAAYYYYY!!!
You always amaze me! Looking forward to seeing more this year.
The end result was gorgeous! The sandals… that’s another story. This is a dress for either a high-heeled, sexy strappy sandal, or a classy black pump.
I love your blog!
Sorry if it offends you, but I disagree. I think these shoes work just as good as heels would. Heels are extremely unhealthy anyhow, and if you’re like me, dangerous too 😉
I find these shoes to be fancy enough to work.
Looks sleek chic and super sexy. Looking forward to more fabulous posts.
NICE. Love how that LBD came out of the formal dress. Love the back.
Great refashion. You look lovely! Daily posts sound fantastic! Happy 2016!
You are so great at transforming out dated to today style. You rock. My Grandmother was a semstres and she would have loved seeing your work. Wonderful
Best news I’ve heard all year!!! No, but seriously, I’m so excited! Thanks for doing this!
Love the dress! And am very excited to see content from you every day this year! 🙂 I need to break out the sewing machine and get refashioning again, so your posts will be a good daily reminder to get my butt back in gear. I have too many projects in queue!
That dress is stunning and the fit perfect.
I’m so glad your doing a 366 challenge again I guessed right on Facebook yay me! I’m also glad your not forcing yourself to do a refashion everyday though, the pressure is too much. Look forward to all your up coming posts.
OMG! Lucky you! And what an amazing job you did too!
New Year! New refashions!!!!!
I was waiting and waiting for your announcement so I decided to chop, snip and refash a sweater using my new machine I just got. And now more inspiration will be eagerly awaited each day! Thanks Jillian.
What a stunning dress:) here’s to many inspiring refashions in 2016, happy new year:)
I love the finished result and I’m so pleased that you’ll be posting every day. I’ve missed you. Happy New Year!
I love you! You’re back with everything that made me wish I was you.
From unloved to KNOCKOUT! I am so excited to see your posts. You inspire me and I plan to do some of my own re-fashioning this year. We live in such a disposable society and waste. I want to be a better human and add value rather than drain the world.
Maria, your comment inspires me as well as Jillian’s posts! I bet your own work will inspire others too! You have a great outlook and attitude!
Yay for the daily refashions. I’m so excited! You always inspire me.
Slam dunk! Happy 2016!!
This is your best refashion yet! Great job! You look great in it – it’s a keeper!
Wow. Gorgeous dress! I am so excited to see your refashions this year. Love your blog.
OMG!! I am super freakin excited!! Your original 365 day challenge is when I found youe wonderful blog!!!
This is gorgeous! Love the back too! Looking forward to this year of new things learned and new ideas!
You are so creative, but thrifty too! I look forward to seeing you often. I wish you lived closer, so I could get hands-on lessons. I have a lot of “size too big” or “not petite” even though I am, or slightly (or really) out of date things that need to be altered and re-created. Keep up the good work!
The are so many online tutorials when it comes to sewing I’m guessing would help you learn to do this yourself. There may even be some local classes, if it works better for you to venture that route. I’m guessing you’d surprise yourself with what you can do.
Absolutely love the way you re-fashioned this dress. It is gorgeous.
Beautiful- what a stunning neckline- and your refashion worked perfectly.
Wowza is right! This is one of the most elegant refashions you’ve done (that I’ve seen, anyway). Happy New Year, looking forward to your daily posts (You’re REALLY going to do that?)
Beautiful! You do lovely work! The back sends it over the top…awesome! Did you build/sew a bra form into the front?
Thanks! Luckily, my strapless bra dips low enough in the back to where that wasn’t necessary. 🙂
Absolutely amazing refash!! Would love a close up of that fabulous neck detail though!!!
I totally agree, good call! I didn’t realize I was wanting that till you mentioned it.
What would look amazing is using up the extra fabric from the dress and making something snazzy to sit at the back to really emphasize the beautiful cut at the top. One amazing work of art.
Such a sophisticated look with the faux fur jacket. Oooo la la!
Yay, a post every day, I love your inspiration
This is easily my favourite of all your refashions! Well done and well timed!
I don’t know whether to hate or love you because now I can’t seem to get rid of anything out of date or ill-fitting!!! I need another closet now! Seriously, I LOVE what you do and I am really looking forward to seeing what you do this year.
OOOOOOO!!!! I love it. You look amazing! Can’t wait to see more from you! Happy New Year!
Love it love it LOVE IT !!!!! so can’t wait for the daily posts. You inspire me everyday to think outside the box!
You look fabulous, darling!
Gorgeous, you did a great job explanation or
What a gorgeous dress, & I’m so excited that we’ll be hearing from you more in 2016! Happy New Year!
YEAH! So excited to read everyday! Thank you for doing the challenge again so that we can be inspired
This dress is absolutely GORGEOUS!
Beautiful!! Maybe my favorite so far
Beautiful dress!! Great job…I also love my Pfaff..
Oh my giddy goat, this is a great piece, exciting to get some cool clothes from a friend’s boss too. And yay, here’s to you posting everyday!
Great news for the start of the year and I like what you have planned. Looking forward to being inspired!!
Yeah! Glad you are back! Happy New Year to you!
Thank you! I so look forward to your creativity and the inspiration it brings!
Wow! Fabulous acquisition AND refashioning! Thanks for sharing!
That is such a beautiful refashion’
Oh my gosh…. This came out beautifully.
I look forward to seeing what you make 🙂