Moulinette Soeurs Tropica Jacquard Dress
Skirt, Anthropologie (thrifted); blouse & cardigan, J. Crew Factory; shoes, Cole Haan; bag, MbMJ (via eBay)

Anthro lovers out there might recognize this skirt; actually, it used to be a dress. This one:

Moulinette Soeurs Tropica Jacquard Dress
Moulinette Soeurs Tropica Jacquard Dress

I thrifted this dress, new with tags, towards the end of my last pregnancy (if memory serves). Basically, I loved the print and figured the size would more or less work – or be made to work – with my post-pregnancy body. Except it didn’t. At all. It was too big in the bust, and gave me the dreaded Strapless Sheath Pooch. (You know what I’m talking about, right?) Even from the best angle, it looked … not good.

I tried to sell it, but quickly realized that I would never get my money back (all $20 of it), and I couldn’t quite bear to part with it for the $5-8 I’d make through consignment. I still really loved the print. What to do? The bottom half of the dress fit nicely, so making it into a skirt seemed like a good solution. (Side note: I used to be really reluctant about drastically altering clothes until I realized that there is nothing special, necessarily, about the original design. It may or may not be the ideal design for my body or preferences. If your chances of recouping a good portion of the purchase price through resale are low, I say go ahead and alter clothes to your heart’s content.)

All in all, I think things all turned out for the better. In my line of work, one can never have too many cute pencil skirts. Can’t say the same about Strapless Sheath Pooch.

Moulinette Soeurs Tropica Jacquard Dress
everything’s coming up roses

12 Comments on Skirting the Issue

  1. The outfit is nice and bright and cheerful. Who does your alterations for you? Right now my Mom does any sewing I need – but it’s a little difficult trekking it out of town all the time! Also, those shoes are amazing!

  2. Hi Adina,
    It would be really helpful if you could let me know how you went about making it into a skirt…. Does it have some kind of top hem and fastening?

    • Hi! Excellent question, but I will have to ask my grandma since my sewing skills pretty much end at darning socks (poorly). I think she may have moved the zipper. I know there was a seam (between the dress bodice and the skirt part) which is where I asked her to cut it.
      Will report back!

        • I did not forget your question! I’m sorry it just took me a while to get the answer. I’m gonna do my best to explain (bear in mind, I am not a sewer).

          So, the dress had a seam where the bodice met the skirt. I asked my grandma to cut the dress there, and she did. She also cut the zipper, which ran up the bodice and down part of the skirt (it’s a size zipper). She said there is a way to sew the ends of the zipper, so the zipper pull doesn’t go “off track” at the new “end”. She added a little hook and eye closure as well. For the new waist, she a little piece of fabric between the lining and the skirt fabric to reinforce the new hem (sorry, I’m not sure if I’m using the appropriate terminology, and I’m translating from another language). She didn’t tailor the waist or the skirt in any other way. She did sew the pockets shut, because I asked her (they sit right on the hip, and gaped in an unattractive manner).

          I’m sorry I can’t be more help, but my grandma did say that it was a really easy job. She also offered to do it for my friend (I didn’t know how to explain the whole blog thing, so I just said a friend asked) if my friend had a dress she wanted altered. So, the offer stands, LOL!

          • Wow – thank you for that! It was more of a general question (for future dress-skirt conversions!) rather than for a particular dress. I actually live in London, so not sure sending a dress to your grandma would work but please say thank you to her (and thank you to you too!) for the offer! ๐Ÿ˜‰
            Thanks again for all your help and for your wonderful blog entries – love reading them.