Peasant Dress Revamped

First of all let me just proclaim that this is another year for me to not buy Ready-to-Wear clothes. I’ve joined over 1000 other fasters headed by the talented sewist, Sarah Gunn.  We’ve all pledged not to buy clothes this year. You can read all about it on her website: Goodbye Valentino.


I’ve made a lot of clothing for myself over the years but now spend more time making quilts and doing alterations and custom sewing for customers. So this should be an easy fast for me and I’ll enjoy the occasional garment making project. I especially love making warm weather apparel and this one just fell into my lap! A successful makeover is alway fun…

My friend asked me if I wanted this vintage peasant dress and I said of course! I wasn’t sure exactly what I would do with it, but I knew I would never wear it in it’s original form. After examining it closely, I decided that it could be refashioned into a wearable summer shift.fullsizeoutput_34cdI unpicked the sleeves first. This garment had finished serged seams so I carefully cut the seam edge with pinking shears before I began taking it apart. My battery-operated seam ripper came in handy.fullsizeoutput_34d1I removed the yoke very carefully, admiring the delicate hand-embroidery and the little mirror decorations as I unpicked.  The dress was made in India.fullsizeoutput_34c3Once the yoke was separated from the dress, and the side seams were unpicked, I folded each piece in half. I noticed that there was a grease stain on one of the panels, so when I folded that panel, I made sure to leave the stain outside of my cutting line.IMG_6206I used New Look 6652 to cut a new back and front. I added about an inch and a half to the center front fold, cut off about 8 inches on the sides, so the dress wouldn’t be as full. I also ignored the dart because it would be gathered along the top and fall nicely over the bust area.fullsizeoutput_34c5I narrowly folded and stitched the lower edges of the armholes and made two rows of gathering stitches along the top edge. Then, I pinned the gathered edge to the facing of the yoke, stitched, then topstitched the outer decorative side of the yolk to the dress.


This is the result of the transformation: a slimmer and more flattering dress, just right for the upcoming warm summer days of spring in Arizona.

Happy Stitching!



About SeamQueen

Seamstress, Sewist, Artist, Fashionista, Quilter, Upcycler, Textile Obsessed!
This entry was posted in alterations, Blogging, DIY, Dressmaking, Fashion, Sewing, Tutorial, Upcycle, vintage, Vintage sewing and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Peasant Dress Revamped

  1. What a great refashion! You kept the pretty embroidery and made it into something very wearable! Love it! I also am part of the RTW Fast… Looking forward to adding a good number of me makes to my wardrobe!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. amcclure2014 says:

    Much better – and wearable now. I tried to keep the (rather tatty) similar embroidery part for a remake of DD’s worn out top.
    I’m also on RTW Fast. Key aim – add well fitting trousers to my wardrobe.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. You did a wonderful job on that remake! I hate to see beautiful embroidery go to waste so I appreciate what you did with it. Nicely done! I’m in the Fast too.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Debbie Ramussen says:

    Beautiful remake, I am so in love with that colour, it turned out gorgeous!

    Liked by 1 person

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