Probably about 6 months ago, my fellow thrifting friend, Tara, brought this dress to me and asked if I could make the hem straight and remove the ruffle part.Tailoring Ready-To-Wear class on Craftsy.com which has taught me so many valuable tips and tricks. Only after watching that class did I figure out a plan for altering this dress, and this is what I did:
I chopped that ruffle off and this is what was left - already much better :)
The next step is actually a trick I learned for lengthening pants in the class. Instead of folding your fabric over, you just use a wide bias tape to add the length you will need on the other side. The fabric was a cotton/spandex, so it had some stretch and I knew that regular store bought bias tape wouldn't work. Luckily, I had that ruffled piece I just cut off the dress :) I laid out the lining from under the ruffle on my cutting mat and got it lined up as straight as possible. Then I measured 2" out, laid down my ruler and used my rotary cutter to cut it off. The best part of using this lining piece was that the edge already had a knitted bind off, so I didn't have to finish the edge at all :)
Once my bias tape was cut, I had to shorten it to match the new hem. I matched up the side seam on one side and marked where the new hem ended with a pin. Then I used an overcast stitch to sew the new side seam together and cut off the excess. The overcast stitch looks very similar to serging, so it matched the other side pretty well.
Then I pinned the cut edges of the bias tape to the right side of the cut edge of the dress and did the same overcasting stitch to hold them together.
I was a little skeptical as to if this would hold the fabrics together well (I've never really used the overcast stitch before), but as you can see it made a nice seam and you couldn't see it from the outside at all - perfect!
Craftsy class. I would absolutely recommend this class to everyone! Angela Wolf (the teacher) was very entertaining to watch, but also very informative. She had done alterations for a long time and the class is purposely designed to teach you how to get started with your own alterations business. Pretty cool, right? She gives lots of time saving tips that she has learned from her own experience. You learn how to shorten and lengthen pants so that you can't tell it was done (even with jeans), how to fit a t-shirt, a dress bodice, a jacket sleeve, and even how to fix hems and invisible zippers :) She breaks things down to make things easy to understand even if you aren't an expert seamstress. I would even like to take more of the classes taught by Angela just because I liked this one so well.
*I did not receive any compensation for this post. I just really love the class! All opinions are 100% my own and not influenced in any way.