“One thing…one thing, leads to ano-o-o-other…”

Sorry I had to quote the band The Fixx there, but it just seemed so appropriate for this post. Why, you ask? Well, this is one of those things that started out as one thing, then turned into an idea that led to something else–you get the idea. To start, one of my favorite blogs is Refashionista. Jillian who writes it is incredibly talented and can literally take the worlds worst thrift store clothing find, and turn it into something absolutely amazing. Inspiration enough for someone who sews, but for someone who sews and shops at thrift stores–downright dangerous! Hats off to you Jillian for inspiring me, even if it was just for the dolls. 🙂

Last week I had a trip to Walmart, and of course I had to go check out the infants clothing section to see if they had anything that would work for the girls. Sure enough, I found this!
one thing 1
Cute, huh?! Typical 3 piece set which I’ve purchased before. Fits great, and as usual, my first thought was cut the Onesie off to make it into a shirt. Then I got to looking at it and thought it looked a bit like the new top to the Sightseeing Outfit they made for Grace Thomas, just polka dots instead of stripes. That got me to thinking…wouldn’t that be cute with a fluffy white skirt. I almost headed to Joann Fabrics, when I suddenly remembered something I’d bought last summer!
one thing 2
I bought this off the clearance rack at Target, thinking it might fit a doll. It didn’t. I even washed it thinking it might shrink since it was all cotton. All I got for my trouble was a wrinkly mess and a dress that was now coming apart!!!  Grrrrrr…
one thing 3
Because of the way it was made, I needed to do some thinking on it before I altered it, so I shoved it in my sewing stash and promptly forgot about it. Glad I remembered it. So what next? Time to do some cutting! I cut the skirt section away from the top.
one thing 4

The next steps I can’t really explain completely because it was literally a “make it up as you go along” kind of thing.  First thing I did was repair where the ruffle was coming off, that was super easy.  Then I took a piece of white fabric and cut a long strip of it 2 inches wide.  I pressed it, folded it in half and pressed it again, then folded one of the open sides under 1/4 inch and pressed that down again for the entire length.  I sewed the unfolded side to the skirt sewing it right on top of the top row of the ruffle to cover the open stitching.  (The top of the ruffle wasn’t technically “finished” since in the original dress it would be covered by the ruffle above it.) I attached the two pieces together at the back now that I knew where it fit, cut the excess off, then I folded the part that I had pressed under 1/4 inch over this and top stitched it, leaving an opening at the back for elastic.  Inserted the elastic, sewed up the opening and voila!  I had a skirt.  Clear as mud, huh? I apologize for that lousy description, but sometimes when you’re creating as you sew, you don’t think about taking pics, and to be honest, I wasn’t 100% sure how well it was going to work.

So here is what the Grace outfit looks like: (like any of you probably need reminding, duh)

sightseeing outfit
Since Alya looks the most like Grace of any of my dolls, I asked her if she would mind modeling for me. She was really in to it, even braided her hair like Grace’s. The finished product:
one thing 5
Here is a close up so you can see that the skirt even has flocked polka dots on it, I’d forgotten all about that until I dug it out!
one thing 6
She really got into the whole modeling thing:
one thing 7    one thing 8

So after I was finished, this was still sitting on the dining room table:

one thing 9
I thought it would be easy to turn into something now without the skirt, until I noticed something…

one thing 10
ARGH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I can’t believe I did that. Yes I can. Quit laughing! I guess it will go back into the stash box until I come up with some idea for it. I have a few already, you know I won’t be happy until I’ve come up with something!

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23 thoughts on ““One thing…one thing, leads to ano-o-o-other…”

  1. That is so cute! I am an amateur with the sewing machine and it seems as though I always have to rip out everything about three times before it’s perfect😆

      • If it makes either of you feel any better, I had to use the seam ripper on this before it was over with, and that still happens to me after years of sewing! Hang in there, I’m glad to hear that there are still people wanting to learn how to do it, it’s a valuable skill to have.

    • Thanks! I’m not sure which part I was happiest about–how it turned out, or FINALLY finding something I could do with that disaster of a dress! 🙂

  2. Who needs AG when they’ve got you, hun! I can attest to Flo’s great sewing skills! My boy (doll) Jason still talks about the “groovy” Fonzie sleeping bag you made for him. This outfit looks really cute on Alya. Nice work!

    • Thanks! And a whole heck of a lot cheaper. The top was right around $3 (the whole set of 3 pieces was $9 and some change). The dress if I remember correctly was $4 or $5 and completely useless as is. Plus I still have a piece left that I may be able to use for something else.

  3. Just checked out the new dress, I like your style much better than AG’s for Grace. Took a good look at the booboo on the top of the part that was left after you removed the bottom for the skirt. I think you can repair that seam ripper hole with a bit of white fabric that you had left when making the waistband and a product called FrayCheck, which can be purchased at JoAnn’s in the crosstitch area of the store. Press the torn area really flat, then dab on the FrayCheck, and then press the white fabric patch (cut to about the size of the hole onto the FrayCheck and under fabric. I advise using a bit of waxpaper under your finger, and under the hole so you don’t get the Fraycheck everywhere. Allow to dry for a couple of hours. It will do since this stuff doesn’t go thru the washer very often. I have repaired several of the interiors of my expensive purses using this method. ET2

    • That’s not a seam ripper hole, I did that with the scissors and it’s much bigger than it looks in the picture. It’s actually multiple cuts. I’m more than likely going to cut the whole ruffle off and go from there anyhow. Those ruffles are terrible to iron. I feel for anyone who bought this as a baby dress, I bet a lot of them got tossed once someone realized how terrible they wash up!

  4. Hi Flo. I did not know that you had a blog but now that I found it, I will be visiting often! I do really like your version of Grace’s outfit! Because AG items cost so much, I am teaching myself how to sew. My dolls don’t seem to mind if I make mistakes along the way, and mistakes I do make quite often!!!!

    • That’s terrific! I’ve known how to sew for so long I can’t imagine not knowing how to, but I’m always happy when I hear that someone is learning how, no matter what the age. I just picked up a book today at a thrift store “Learn to Crochet”–you’re never too old or too young to learn.

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