Upcycling Your Wardrobe – Part One: Aztec Maxi Dress

Aztec Dress

It’s true, I’m converted! Upcycling items in your wardrobe is really quick, easy, and a lot less expensive that buying something new; plus, you’ve got something that’s really unique!

…but I’ll be honest with you, I’ve always been dubious of upcycling and the examples I’ve seen in magazines and online always looked a bit naff…that was, of course, until I was clearing out my wardrobe over the Christmas break and had a brainwave!

I loved my black body con dress but I never felt completely comfortable in it – I have therefore only ever worn it twice and spent both evenings tugging at the skirt to make it longer and trying in vain to suck my stomach in. I also loved my Aztec maxi skirt, but as with most (by most I mean 99%) of the things I buy, it was patterned and I didn’t have a top to go with it. So I decided to cut the skirt off my dress and sew on my Aztec skirt to make a whole new dress and I’m going to share with you just how easy it was.

How to do it

Aztec Dress Stages

It’s a lot easier to do this is you have a tailors dummy or a patient friend!

  1. Put the dress on the tailors dummy
  2. Measure the width of the waistband of the Aztec skirt
  3. Cut the majority of the silver skirt off the dress, leaving twice the width of the Aztec skirt waistband on the dress (now essentially a black top!) This will make it easier to attach the new skirt to the top (I decided not to unpick the top from the silver skirt as it was slightly gathered and I didn’t think I’d make as good of a job trying to copy it!)
  4. Place the skirt into position onto the tailors dummy so you can see how your dress will look when finished.
  5. With a contrasting thread, tack the Aztec skirt onto the black top to hold it in place whilst you sew it together (this was particularly important for this dress as the Aztec skirt had an elasticated waistband)
  6. Sew the Aztec skirt to the black top, sewing both the top and bottom of the waistband so you have two lines of stitching – this will make sure it is properly anchored on and looks more professional
  7. Cut off the tacking thread
  8. Put your dress on and enjoy!

Roll on summer!

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