Thursday, October 18, 2012

Maxi Dress, using a tank top

I had an old tank top that was kind of stretched out that I no longer wore and was wondering how I could re-purpose it. After some looking on Pinterest I decided to make a maxi dress out of it! It was very simple and I love how it turned out, here's what you'll need:


  • Old Tank Top
  • Corresponding Material: (mine was 46 inches wide x 38 inches long)
  • Elastic Thread 
  • Regular Thread
  • Sewing Machine
I began by cutting my tank top off where I wanted the skirt to begin.

Maxi Dress Tutorial

Tank top dress tutorial

Then I wrapped my material around me 1 1/2 times. This came to about 46 inches wide. I measured how long I wanted it to be (just to the tops of my feet) which came to 38 inches long. These numbers will obviously vary for each person but that's what great about making your own clothes, they end up fitting YOU perfectly. Remember to allow for seam allowances when you cut. I usually add 1 1/2 inches length wise for this and 1/2 an inch width wise.

Once I cut my fabric, I folded the piece in half (front to front) and sewed up the side so that I then had a giant rectangle. I found this fabric in a clearance pile at JoAnn's a while back, it was about 1 1/2 yards and was only $5!

 Here is the fabric folded in half

In this picture I'm sewing up the sides, making my huge rectangle

Next you are going to switch your bobbin thread with elastic thread. I find that it helps if you just have two bobbins so that you aren't wasting thread and always re-threading your bobbin. You will need to hand thread your bobbin with the elastic thread. 

Once your elastic thread is on your bobbin, place it in your machine and then sew a straight line across the top of your skirt, the part that is going to attach to your tank top. Once you've sewn your line your material will crinkle up as in the picture below. Then you are going to flip your tank top inside out and pin your skirt to the tank top. Make sure the seam of your skirt is in the center of the back of the tank top. Pin this first and then work your way around the tank top, pinning so that everything is even. You pin the skirt and tank top so that they are front to front.

Once yo're done pinning, sew the two pieces together, still using the elastic thread in your bobbin. The elastic thread is important because if you didn't have it your dress wouldn't fit over your shoulders...assuming your shoulders are wider than your waist that is...which I'm pretty sure is the case for most of us.

Once you've sewn the skirt and top portion together, flip your dress inside out. This is what it should look like:

Then I ironed the fabric and added a large belt where the two materials met. What do you think?

Maxi Tank Top Dress Tutorial DIY

Maxi Dress Tutorial

 Just add a sweater and you're ready for fall!

Maxi Dress Tutorial


  1. Only ONE comment? What the Hay Folks?!! Good for you Hannah! I found you on a linky & am VERY glad to have!!!! Adoreable dress & the first one I have seen using elastic thread! GREAT reason also! ;) Thanks for the step by step!!!

  2. wow, such a fun idea!! and I love how you made it so versatile!
    just discovered your blog via bloghop ;)

  3. it will be perfect for the summer, I have to find some tops now :)

  4. Wow, you did a great job! Would love it if you linked up on my blog hop Also let me know if you'd like to follow each other!

  5. Great tutorial! See my finished product: