I got this dress at h&m for 10 bucks! A houndstooth 60s style shift for 10 bucks? Not even a question! I knew it would be a little bit short for my taste, but I also knew that a quick fabric fix could add a few inches. This quick fix can be applied to most shorter dresses and even skirts, tunics and pants. In the case of this dress, because the lines are so simple and the fabric is pretty sturdy, I was able to add a simple band of similar weight fabric. If you’re working with a lightweight fabric, this method can still be used, but it may need a little adjustment based on the fabric you’re using. **Choose a fabric** I recommend taking your dress with you to the fabric store. Find a fabric with a similar weight and drape as the fabric used on your dress (or skirt or tunic..whatever you want to lengthen). You’ll need about a quarter yard for a simple shift dress.
Here’s how to lengthen a dress:
Start by laying your dress down flat and place two layers of fabric underneath. Make sure the fabric has right sides together, so you’ll draw on the wrong side of the fabric. Use a ruler to continue the line of the side seam onto your fabric, adding 1/2″ for a seam allowance. Repeat on both sides. Decide how many inches you want to add to the dress and then add 1″ to that for the hem. Trim the bottom to your length.
Now, sew the two side seams together on your extender fabric and hem the bottom by folding over 1/2″ twice and sewing in place. Next, pin the band of fabric to the bottom of the dress, right sides together. Sew it up and press the seam allowance up.
I left the original dress hem intact. I liked the double stitching on top and wanted to keep that feature. Depending on the dress, you can always undo the dress hem first and then add the fabric, it’s up to you!