Thursday, August 29, 2013

Remodel a Men's T into a Maxi Dress

How exciting to be of the Inspiration Cafe team!  They let me post something the last Friday of each month!  I just can't stop grinning about it!  Here is my post from June.  My post about herbs this week will be at Inspiration Café tomorrow!

I have a new project for you, but first, let me set the scene!
Basic T-Shirts are a staple for Summer.  They are comfy and cool.  I struggle to find T's that fit because, well, let's face it.  This Old Gray Mare just ain't what she used to be!  I'm short.  I'm curvy and I'm not a size 2.  (sigh)  My budget isn't all that great either.
My solution?  Remake men's T-Shirts into ones that fit!  Sometimes I get lucky and find good ones at yard sales or thrift stores.  Have you noticed those packs of men's T's that are something like $10 for four shirts?  Those are GREAT for remodels.
Last August, I figured out how to turn a T into a Tank.
It saw a lot of wear when our temps were so brutal in late summer.

 Lil Fashionista got one, too!  Check it out here!
This graphic was a total score from Yards and Yards of Yard Sales and only cost $2.00.  It became A Boatneck,  my favorite shirt for grocery shopping early in the morning.  (Oh, and by the way...  If you are one of the people who wear their pajamas to the store, please stop it.  Sew yourself a cute T and get dressed.)

If you are interested in the other T-Shirt Remodels, check out my Sewing Page.

Are you ready for today's project?

It is a Maxi Dress!

All you need is:

one T-Shirt (two if you mess up the first one)
Fabric for the skirt

A Shirt or Dress that fits to use as a pattern.

 (Brace yourself.  My hair is naturally curly and it's really humid today!)

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 I found a three pack of V neck T's on sale for only $5.00!  Score!

The first thing you need to do is try on the T you are going to remodel.  Does it fit anywhere?  I liked the fit of the collar, so I left that part alone. 

Using the same technique for My Basic T, I placed a dress I like on top of the T for a pattern.

I cut down and sewed the sides to fit.  The next part was kind of tricky.  Wanting an empire waist dress, the first try was cut  WWAAAYY  too short.  (It's a good thing I had three shirts!)  Back to the drawing board.  On the second try, I cut it about three inches longer and that worked out well.  What can I say?  My chest is about the size of Connecticut. 

Make sure the top part fits before adding the skirt.  You may have to start over!  'Just sayin'.

 I was torn about adding sleeves or not.  Thanks to messing up the first try, I experimented with cutting the shoulder just a little long.  I like that smidge of a cap.  I think I'm leaving the dress sleeveless.  I don't know.  Maybe I should cut it right and add a sleeve.  What do you think?

Next, the funky red fabric (found at a yard sale from Pickin' Time on 59  for 50 cents  WOO HOO!)  was measured about 1.5 times wider than the bottom of my remodeled T.  The red fabric was sewn up the sides to form a tube and then slightly gathered until it was the same width as the top.  With right sides facing, they were sewn together. 

Even with having to completely make over the top, this project only took one evening!

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I picture this dress floating as I walk along a beach at sunset. Wait.  We don't have beaches in Arkansas.  Maybe I can wear it to Farmer's Market?  It's comfy, cool and vibrant!  Perfect for Summer!  Do you think I should change the sleeve?  What about accessories?  Which jewelry?  Belted, or no?  I'd love to hear your thoughts!  What is your favorite summer outfit?

Please visit me (and the rest of the Inspiration Cafe team) tomorrow! 

;-)  -Marci



  1. Cute idea!! LOVE that fabric you've used for the skirt :)

  2. It turned out beautifully and you look lovely in it :) Hugs!

  3. I have loved all of your fashion creations! I think the T into a Tank is my favorite! We love having you at the Cafe girl!

  4. You're very creative with clothing!! You look fabulous in all your creations Marci :).

    Thanks so much for joining on Blog Hop on Thursday. We hope to see more of you and your projects.

  5. I've made these for my daughter, since she is slim...not saying anything more about that...

    However, I learned one thing: I always sew the seam with WRONG sides together, first, then turn it and sew with right sides together, enclosing the seam. This prevents raveling and gives lots more strength to that seam which tends to pull loose with much use. I'd at least double stitch it about 1/8" away from the first seam, to give durability.

  6. What a clever skirt . . . tee shirt fabric is so comfy :)
    You have a winner here :)
    Stay happy, your blogging sister, Connie :)

  7. It turned out great ... and much less expensive than buying one in a store!

    Thank you for linking to Raising Imperfection.
    Please come back Friday to see if you were featured. :)

    (¸¤ Lanaya | xoxo

  8. Some great ideas for refashioning t-shirts there Marci!
    I would love if you came and linked them to my clothes upcycling project page. It has a long term linky, so your project would stay there for more than just the week of a usual linky. We have over 500 projects linked up now – some fantastic ideas.
    Do come and take a look!

  9. Wow love this DIY dress and tutorial, such a great idea, thanks so much for sharing
    Just popping over from everything wild and lovely linky

    Laura x

  10. this is perfect I am tall with long body and legs T shirts are never long enough or dresses. Its perfect idea time to pass idea onto my daughters who have the same problem except they are very slim I am not


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