Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Vintage Sheet Dress

I've been collecting vintage sheets for a little while now.  I went through them recently and realized, it was time to actually DO something with them. Last summer I planned to make skirts and dresses and quilts. Instead, we moved. SO HAPPY not to be doing that again this summer. So this year, I sew!
 
The new dress came from this sheet, which I really love.  It's funny because I found a flat sheet and a fitted sheet in this pattern and different times and locations. (Isn't it funny how often you find repeats of patterns when looking for vintage sheets? If you've been collecting a while, you know what I mean. Not as much variety 20+ years ago. Which is not necessarily bad. Okay, I'm waffling. . .) 

Anyway, I loved that bright pink edge. Then I had the brilliant idea to make that the bottom edge of the dress. No hemming required! I know, I'm a genius. (That, plus I'm lazy. I love shortcuts!)
 
I used this much of the sheet (I think it was probably a Queen size originally.) I measured and cut the finished length. For the width, I doubled the finish measurement. I hemmed the top edge and sewed one seam up the back. All I had left was the shirring (gathering the bodice).
 
I've wanted to try shirring every since I watched Heather Ross make it look so easy on Martha. (You can watch the video at this link too!)  Sandi Henderson also has a great tutorial.  The secret is elastic sewing thread. It's pretty snazzy. I found it at a chain sewing store.
 
And here are the end results.  It takes a little bit of time to sew all those seams, but I basically finished this dress in one evening. My daughter wore it to church on Sunday and played in it all day. Perfect for a warm, sunny spring day.  The fabric is so soft and durable - I also love the thought that because it's a blend, I won't need to iron it. I will probably make more. Especially considering the fact that the whole dress (elastic thread included) cost less than $6. Nice.

30 comments:

  1. love the idea of using the vintage sheets.

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  2. that's a super cute dress!!

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  3. I love it! What a great idea. i am just starting to collect. i have a few pillowcases.

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  4. Beautiful dress! When do I get to go thrifting with you? We really need to get together once school is out and life slows down a little bit.

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  5. Ah, you are a regulare Scarlet O'Hara ( remember in Gone with the Wind she makes herself a new gown from the draperies.)
    Your sheering the top made it special.

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  6. Great idea!!! Love the dress :)

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  7. What a cute little dress, you would never know that it was made from a sheet. Love it!!!

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  8. Beautiful!!!! I haven't tackled the elastic thread yet...a little intimidated!! Might try it to make an old sheet look like that!!

    Blessings,

    KT

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  9. sandi hendersons tute makes it looks so easy...is it really? i am a little afraid of the elastic but the result is so great. i love the dress you made...it looks so comfie.

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  10. Yeah!! Love the smocking, love the hem. I think if that dress were mine, I would promptly go take a nap. Mmmm naaaaap....

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  11. I'm sure your daughter will treasure this dress as she grows up. Makes me wish I'd saved some of those old sheets that went to DI.

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  12. This is one of the nicest I've seen! Nice.

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  13. I need to come over and learn shirring! I tried once and it didn't go well. Your's looks great!

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  14. Too, too cute. I think I used to have those sheets. BettyLou

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  15. Awesome! The dress turned out beautifully! I am a bit scared of shirring. I just need to give it a go and try!

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  16. Oh wow. It is darling. What a great method. So cute.

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  17. so lovely...and, thrifty! wonderful job!

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  18. What an adorable dress! The vintage sheet is perfect for this pattern.

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  19. love the vintage sheet used like this. Nice work on this dress.

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  20. i love the sheets with that additional little color accent on the bottom hem or the lace trim! cute, cute cute!

    http://patchworkposse.com

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  21. Absolutely adorable! Now I need to go out and find some elastic thread!

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  22. SO cute. I've enjoyed working with Elastic thread, I'll have to try this one soon! Adorable!

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  23. Would love to feature your tutorial on the vintage sheet blog. please let me know if that would be all right. http://vintagesheets.blogspot.com

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  24. You warm my heart! Great ideas so well executed. Thrifting recycling reusing is the best life. Such a lucky lucky family to have you and THANKS so much for sharing with us all. Your inspirations will keep multiplying as we all pass them forward!

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