Thrifted Burgundy Dress Refashion

My very first REFASHION!!!! So for the past couple days I’ve kept on seeing the “How You’ve Aged 10 Year Challenge” and it made me start thinking what was I up to back then. I cruising the old facebook page and presto came across my very first refashion.

Now this was not 10 years ago more like 7, but hey 10 years ago I had just moved back to my hometown from the big city (was not my jam) and was trying to figure out life. Sewing was just something my mom did in the loft for fun or more likely fixing everyone’s clothes.

Growing up, my mom always was sewing. She made a majority of our clothes and to my utter detest (at the time) matching Christmas dresses for her, my sister and I. Back then I was a huge tom boy and dresses were the enemy, how fitting my first refashion was a dress. Now I really appreciate the love and hard work she put into all our garments. My poor mother probably was mad as heck back then at me for my pure hated of floral and how hard it was to wrestle me into a dress she spent hours on. 

I had made a few things when I was little and knew some of the basics of sewing. During high school for sewing class I made a rag quilt, a set of pjs and somehow managed to sew over my finger. The sewing bug never really hit me until my early 20’s and I’m here to say the biggest thank you to my mother for exercising the greatest amount of patience while teaching me more about sewing. Flying garments were a thing when the seam ripper was picking out the exact same seam for the fourth time. She would go pick up whatever garment I was mad at, breathe in, count to ten in her head, reminded herself she still loved me (I’m assuming), hand me back the garment and told me to try again. After 7 of years the garments still go flying when something isn’t working out like I want it, but I’m the one to go pick it up and make myself try again. I’ve grown so much! 

Now that you know that my mom is a saint, lets get to the fun!

When I started seeing refashioned clothing pop up on the internet, I couldn’t get clothing to refashion in my hands fast enough. Lucky for me the month I started this little adventure happened to coincide with my favourite secondhand store’s big sale. Every January and I believe June or July they did (might still do) $1 per piece of clothing sale. Hello! I loaded up my arms with as much clothing as I could carry and began dreaming. Starting simple I picked this lovely dress out of the pile. I really didn’t want to bother with a pattern so I took another dress out of my closet and used it as a template. 

I used a garment with stretchy fabric so I didn’t have to worry about adding anytime of closures to it, such as zippers or buttons. I had to keep in mind not to pull the fabric as I sewed, else it will stretch out as it was being sewn and would end up look funny. 

To use the same technique: 

  1. – Turn the larger garment inside out and lay out flat. Use a dress that fits you as a template by turning it inside out and lay on top of the larger garment matching up the necklines. I always take a few pins and pin the two garments together at the shoulders, along both sides and at the bottom of the dress. This will help so that your dress doesn’t move around. 
  2. – Measure a seam width from the edge of your dress and mark with fabric chalk. I measured a 1/2 inch seam. Measure and outline along both sides of your dress. 
  3. – For the hem you’ll want to determine the amount to take and measure along the bottom and make a chalk line. I measured an 1 inch and a 1/4 as I was doing a simple folded edge hem. 
  4. – Once you have the chalk outline complete take a scissors and cut along the chalk lines.
  5. – Open up the cut out dress with the wrong side facing up and at the armhole fold in a 1/4 inch and press with an iron then turn in again 1/4 inch and press. (for 1/2 inch seam) Pin along the armhole and stitch this in place following close to the edge. Repeat on the other side and press both seams again. This will give your dress a very professional look to it.
  6. – With right sides facing together pin along both sides of the dress from under the armhole to the bottom of them dress. Sew down each side with a 1/2 inch seam or the seam allowance you measured out. Press open your seams. 
  7. – Moving on to hem, with the garment still inside out measure 1/4 inch and turn in and press along to bottom of the dress. Then turn in 1 inch and press and pin. Stitch in place along the edge. 
  8. – Turn the garment right side out and press
That’s it you are all done! 

This took me a series of two evening with my mom to complete. At first it was slow going as I hadn’t sewn anything in years, but once I got into the rhythm it went fast.


Yes, just liked that I was hooked. A.K.A. were my happy dance was born. Now I have a closet full of clothes to refashion or repurpose for littles. It’s one of my favourite things in the world to do. 

Until next time Create, Smile and Radiate!

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