DIY: Refining a Little White Dress

In this DIY, I'll show one of the many ways to alter a simple dress. Sometimes, adding very subtle details can instantly transform something into a completely new style. Here, I have a very minimalistic cream dress that I'll modify into a vintage, bohemian-inspired piece just by sewing delicate lace trims. Read more to see the process!

What you'll need:
1. A plain dress

I ordered this stunning cream long-sleeved dress from Tobi. This was originally $50, but I got it for half the price because they have a "50% off your first order" deal on their website. They also provide free shipping, and the delivery time is very quick!

2. Lace trims
2 yds Lace Ribbon Trim
Before ordering online, find out the measurements of your dress's hem just so you won't run short. I got mine from Etsy which was surprisingly very inexpensive. They have a variety of lovely crochet designs to choose from, and I happened to find one with the exact color as my dress.

3 yds Crochet Trim
I ordered another set because I messed up big time (I'll explain more later). I wasn't able to order the same trim because the seller ran out, so I got a similar one for a cheaper price. The color is slightly more yellow, but the pattern is just as pretty. The owner even left a cute thank you note!

3. Scissors and sewing materials/fabric glue

If you're sewing, use a thread spool with a color that's close to your dress or trims so that it'll blend in nicely. I sewed at first then bought a fabric glue which was a massive lifesaver!

Let's get started!
First, I trimmed my dress because the length looked very unflattering on my extremely petite stature. Make sure you measure accurately because that's where I made a huge mistake - I cut mine way too short that it can't even be a dress anymore. No worries though because there's always a way to fix it (more on that later).

Despite my careless blunder, I went ahead and sewed in my first trim. I placed it about half an inch above the hem just to make it more secure. Keep sewing until you finish covering all of the hem with your trim.

You should end up with a nice and clean hem like this!

Now this is obviously too risqué to wear as a dress, so I came up with a last-minute solution. 

I took the leftover fabric that I cut off in the beginning, glued it back on the dress, cut about 4 inches off, and added the new bundle of lace trim on the bottom.
Here are close-ups of the finished dress. I also added lace on the sleeves since I had the perfect length of leftover trim.

Before, then, and after
Now you have a vintage, spring-inspired tiered dress! That is, if you messed up like I did. If you ever make a mistake, don't throw anything away and start over. There's always a way to fix it. The finished product might even come out a lot better than you originally planned! 

I hope you enjoyed this DIY! Feel free to try it out!
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  1. Hah, that is so clever and creative! xD
    You sure made a mistake into something so brilliant.
    I love what you've done to this dress, Sonja~ Ah, so lovely ;; v ;; <3
    Kudos to you! ^ _ ^

  2. Very cute! I'm glad you made the mistake haha… it looks cuter that way.


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