Summer dress – Up-cycling project – Adding Sleeves and Modesty Panel

01-Summer Dress Upcyle - sleeves and modesty panel

This is a very flattering dress: it accentuates a small waist and hides wide hips nicely beyond the lightly gathered skirt. Most pear shapes or hourglass figures will suit styles like this.

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There are a couple of elements that I am not entirely happy with

The neckline is rather plunging – especially as I am quite busty.

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I am also not a great fan of sleeveless dresses, I prefer to keep my underarms under cover!

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Luckily this dress comes with a long generous wrap, which is enough fabric to make sleeves.

If the dress you want to revamp doesn’t come with a wrap, you can always take fabric from the bottom.

08-Summer Dress Upcyle - sleeves and modesty panel -007

I created a bit of a cap sleeve pattern – using a sleeve from another pattern as a guide.

As the fabric is chiffon, I traced the outline of the sleeve using a dissolvable marker cutting the fabric in a strip.

Using a pretty narrow zig zag stitch and matching thread, follow round the sleeve following the outline

then trim close to the finished edge.


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Stitch the sleeve seam and then add a gathered edge using narrow elastic

You can just see the elasticated edge here, I use a large zig zag stitch to create a gathered edge.

Pin and stitch the sleeve into the armholes. 

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The modesty template is triangular, I doubled over the fabric,

making the top edge along the fold because of the transparent nature of the chiffon.

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Once again zig zag the side edges, so that the panel is in one piece.

Stitch in place between the cross over bodice.

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All done! Now I can wear it without the need for a teeshirt underneath.

I have enough fabric left to make a matching hair accessory and a rose.

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3 thoughts on “Summer dress – Up-cycling project – Adding Sleeves and Modesty Panel

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