One of the things that I’m working on lately is developing a collection of crochet dresses. These will be dresses that I locate at thrift stores, strip down and repurpose using crochet. This is the first in the line:
The cream colored part comes from a crochet dress that I bought at a thrift store several years ago. I had it hanging in my closet but I had only worn it twice because it just didn’t fit right on me. The original skirt was too heavy and I didn’t like the way that the top fit. But I liked the idea of the dress so I hung on to it and eventually I decided to remake it with my own crochet work.
The first thing that I did was I stripped off the skirt of the original dress. Here’s what it looked like before I did that:
So I stripped off the skirt. Next I took my yarn (Persia colored Malabrigo sock yarn – so gorgeous!) and started working it into the bottom row of crochet on the front of the dress using single crochet to get started. When I got to the back there wasn’t crochet on the top of the dress, only cloth, so I just worked single crochet in a chain for the length and then joined in the round where I had started. I continued until I had several rows of single crochet then I hand-sewed the back into place.
After that I switched over to triple crochet. I didn’t want to do anything fancy with the design since I’m just learning how to add crochet to an existing dress like this but I wanted something open and triple made sense. I basically just crocheted in round using triple until I had a length that I wanted. I didn’t have to significantly increase at all – it seemed to happen naturally – although I did kind of eyeball and increased here and there in a very non-scientific fashion.
You can kind of tell in the photo that the front of the dress is longer than the back. I’ve been watching a lot of fashion shows lately (check out Masters of Style on Hulu!) and wanted to do something with a short skirt in front and a long one in back. The result is a short dress with a train (sort of, it needs some work, but the idea is there). I then added a shell border all the way around the bottom of the dress to complete the skirt.
I still didn’t like the top of the dress. What I decided to do was to add a crochet ribbon tie woven through the front of the dress. I also added a row of crochet shells for a more decorative neckline:
I definitely need to learn a lot as I develop this line of dresses. I need to upgrade my sewing skills to get better shaping. I need to learn more about creating structure in skirts with crochet. I need to play around with different yarns and stitches and hook sizes, etc. But for the most part I’m really happy with this first attempt. I like wearing the dress and love the color of that Malabrigo yarn!
What do you think?