Prom Dress makeover. Prom time? Really? Time flies. I know you know this. I know it’s cliche. But it’s also true! Suddenly, and without warning, I have an 18yo daughter who is graduating this spring. She has attended a local career center for her junior and senior years of high school, after homeschooling from 5th grade thru 10th grade.
She was chosen for Prom Court a couple months ago so we began the search for a dress for her to wear to Prom.
I thought I’d share what we came up with – our Prom Dress Makeover.
She wanted cobalt blue, but anything she was finding online was $100 and up from there. And what she really liked that she found online were pictures on Pinterest of dresses that were no longer available. I told her we would shop locally and resigned myself to the fact that I might be making her a dress to get what we wanted.
We didn’t have any luck locally finding a typical prom dress. But at a clothing boutique we found this dress – on the clearance rack no less.
She tried it on and it fit her well – and at $14 I was pretty sure I could make it into what she really wanted.
The skirt of the dress is navy – it doesn’t translate quite as dark in the photos as it really is. And the dress lacked a top. We dislike strapless (I tend to call them topless) dresses and find it awkward when the women wearing the strapless dresses are constantly tugging them up.
That, however, I knew was not a problem. I’ve added a top to more than one strapless dress in my sewing career.
We headed to JoAnns and purchased cobalt blue sheer fabric, lining, thread, and buttons.
The total cost for the dress and all the items for the prom dress makeover was a whopping $41.
I basically used the same technique that I used on this Homecoming dress makeover from several years ago that I did for a friend’s daughter.
The only real difference was the ivory lace fabric this dress was created of is stretchy. Because of that I didn’t want to just stitch the cobalt bodice pieces directly to the ivory and then have it stretch funny when she put the dress on.
Instead, I sewed up the bodice pieces and serged the bottom edges together and then fitted it to the dress with it on my daughter and hand stitched it in place from the outside while she was wearing the dress.
After that step was finished I hand stitched again from the inside to secure the bodice top really well.
To bring the cobalt blue into play in the skirt of the dress I added a double layer of sheer cobalt fabric, creating an overskirt that cut away in the front to reveal the navy skirt underneath. I used the rolled hem on my serger to finish the edges of both sheer overskirt.
The top edge of the skirt was a fold which created a nice finished edge and I simply topstitched the overskirt to the original skirt.
I knew I wanted thread that matched the dress to use for serging the edges of the sheer skirt pieces, but I didn’t want to buy 4 spools of cobalt blue serger thread. So I bought regular thread on the small spools and just used those for my serging. You could get by with even less thread by winding a few bobbins full of the color thread used for serging and then loading your serger with the bobbins.
At the sides, the bodice pieces ended up working best to just come to the dress top and not actually meet under the arm.
Emma had wanted a row of diamond buttons all the way down the new bodice top. However, when I got to that point I decided it was going to be easiest and look the most original to just use one button to fasten the top of the bodice together in the back.
A side-by-side before and after is always fun to compare and see exactly what transpired to create the difference.
Originally we bought navy hose and dress shoes to go with her outfit.
The weather ended up being warmer than normal, and I took her in for a spray tan so we nixed the hose and shoes and went with her cobalt blue converse. I love this look better anyway!
She used jewelry she already had to complete the outfit.
A friend who is in cosmetology school did Emma’s hair and makeup before Prom.
This girl of mine doesn’t like to drive and will come up with any excuse to NOT drive. Since I was planning to go to see the Prom Court presented and the king and queen crowned later in the evening, she convinced me to drop her off too. So I dropped her off, answered texts from her for the next couple hours and then arrived back at the school for the presentation of prom court. As soon as that was over and she was all done on stage, she was ready to go. And introvert by nature, this girl is sweet and kind and had been a joy to be a Mother to. It was fun to create this prom dress makeover for her and share in the experience with her.
Now – on to graduation and her grad party which we are planning now!