DIY Shorten that dress! How to re-style your favorite vintage outfit and retro clothes

This project was created by our Attic employee Shannon Keller.

Things you will need:

a long dress
pins (sewing pins work best, but safety pins are good, too)
sewing machine or needle
thread to match dress fabric
scissors
measuring tape or ruler
iron (this isn’t necessary, but if you’ve got one, it will give it a much more finished look)

This is what the dress looks like before.

Mark the new length with a pin.

Lay the dress flat on a large table or floor, smooth out any wrinkles, and measure the distance from the bottom hem of the dress to the pin. Moving the ruler over a few inches, insert another pin. Repeat measuring and pinning a few more times until you have a clear line for cutting.

This is the exciting part...cut through both layers of fabric, about 1 inch below your pins.

This is what the dress looks like after it has been cut.

Turn the dress inside out and fold the bottom over about 1/4"-1/2", depending on how big you want your hem to be.

and iron the hem, or if you don't have an iron...

you fold it again...

and you pin it!

Then you sew the hem, either with a machine, or hand sewing.

This is what the finished hem should look like.

Finally, you have a really cool and totally new outfit!

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11 thoughts on “DIY Shorten that dress! How to re-style your favorite vintage outfit and retro clothes

  1. Love this idea – How many times have I seen a dress only to think “It’s too long”?! Totally love upcycled clothing that has new life breathed into it. Great job on altering your dress!

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