Turn a Maxi Dress into a Maxi Skirt

Monday, May 19, 2014

You know when you finally get around to doing something that has been on your to-do list for weeks? Well I got around to one of my to-do's this weekend - turning a too-small maxi dress into a maxi skirt!

The No Sew (almost) Maxi Skirt-from-Dress Refashion (step-by-step guide)

Just over a year ago, I went to a wedding for my "office mama" (the one person I can always go to to vent, lean on, grab a hug from... we all have one of those, right?) and was so excited when I found a purple and gray maxi dress that matched her wedding colors perfectly. The dress was at a consignment shop near my office and when I found it with the tags still on, I turned a blind eye to the fact that it is was a juniors dress. Meaning... no room for hips, butt, and waist.

So I wore it to the wedding and a few times to work, but it didn't fit in the bust or hips, so I decided to turn it into a maxi skirt instead!

The Before & After of a Nearly no-sew Dress to Skirt Refashion

The fabric is polyester and not a jersey knit or cotton, so I decided to stray away from sewing since I knew the stitching around the waist would look less than nice once it was finished. Instead, I used heat-n-bond and elastic to get the same look - with nearly no sewing!

Maxi dress
Sharp scissors or rotary cutter and mat
Sewing machine or thread and needle

How to turn a Maxi Dress into a Maxi Skirt (with almost no sewing)!

Directions: (top row, second row, third row, etc.)
1. Cut the top off of the maxi dress;
2. Try on the skirt inside out and pin the waist to match the length you want the skirt to be;
3. Iron on the Heat-n-Bond to the raw edge side of the fabric (on the inside);
4. Continue all the way around then pull off the backing and iron the bond onto the other side (this creates the channel for the elastic to go through);
5. Leave a spot unironed so there will be a place to insert the elastic;
6. Measure around your waist where you want to the waistband to sit and cut your elastic at that length (or add about a 1/2 inch - you will overlap about an inch to join them);
7. Using a safety pin attached the end of the elastic, thread the elastic through the channel (making sure to keep the elastic straight and not twisted in the waist band);
8. When the elastic has been threaded through, overlap the edges and safety pin together;
9. Try the skirt on to make sure the waist is the right size (I had to pull mine over my head because the safety pin wouldn't hold together as I pulled it up);
10. Once the measurement is correct, sew a square on the overlapping parts using a small zigzag stitch (or by hand if you don't have a sewing machine);
11. Close up the opening of the waistband by ironing the small remaining Heat-n-Bond that has been fully fused;
12. Distribute the gathering evenly then try it on!

I am so happy I will be able to get so much more wear out of this skirt this summer! It's a little bit more casual as a skirt too which I like.

Here is a sort-of closeup of the waist. You can't even tell that there is a bit of gathering to it:

Also, Morgan's graduation was this weekend! The Master/Doctoral graduation was interesting. Some super smart graduates walked across that stage to accept their diplomas. Morgan made sure to pose for some pictures along the processional and after he accepted his diploma, so I will have to grab those pictures to share. But we made sure to grab a dual-selfie before heading out to the ceremony to commemorate not only this graduation but our three years of friendship!

Hope you all have a great week!
{I party with these blogs!}


  1. Thanks for the how to post about the maxi dress. I've two tall girls that I'm always hunting for age appropriate clothing. Then add the for their height size and fit gets a little tricky.
    Glad to see a pic of your friend Morgan (you've mentioned b4) so wonderful he graduated.

  2. OMG Thank you so much for this tutorial!!! I was just looking at two maxi dresses (that I have NEVER worn) and telling myself to take them in to get turned into skirts. Now I can do it!!! If you have a moment I would LOVE for you to link this to my weekly beauty party tomorrow morning. Monday Morning Madness. Please and Thank You
    www {dot} confessionsoftheperfectmom {dot} com

  3. Awesome idea! I have a maxi dress that I love but it is a little too booby-licious to wear out much. Turning it into a skirt would a perfect! ;)

    Pinning! Thank you so much for sharing your creativity with us at Show-Licious Craft & Recipe Party! Join us again this Saturday morning!
    ~ Ashley

    1. I love this tutorial so much I am featuring it Saturday morning at my Show-Licious Craft & Recipe Party! Please come party with us again!
      ~ Ashley

  4. I love this!! Featuring it today at Nap-Time Creations...You are part of the weekend features from the Create Link Inspire party. I've also spread the word all over my social media and I would love a reshare or two ;o) Happy Weekend! Emily

  5. This looks so easy. Hello from The Party Bunch.


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