For New Year’s Eve my friends threw a “Roaring 20’s” party to kick off 2020. I was so excited but I feel like New Years always sneaks up on me. There’s so much prep around Christmas with the gifts, food, decorations, coordinating with family, etc. that somehow, I’m always preparing for New Year the day before. Cody and I went to Party City to check out their 1920’s costumes and the two dresses they offered were picked over in sizing. I could either buy one of those two dresses at Party City (that everyone else would be wearing) and alter it to fit myself, or just go rouge and make my own. So that’s what I did. I started by making a classic tailgate dress then adding fringe for a 20’s vibe. All supplies and instructions are below. Let me know if you have questions/comments!
The Basic Tailgate Dress:
I call this the basic tailgate dress because it is my go-to for game days and tailgates. Instead of buying a solid colored T-shirt, I’ll but one with a sports team’s logo (ex: Houston Texans) and then have a Texans T-shirt dress. I’ll put some photos below of the different sports teams I’ve done these dresses for (Disclaimer- I’m not a spurs fan but my Sorority did a mixer there!) I’ve also done a tube top version where I just use half the length of the shirt (see Texans top below).
- 2XL(+) T-shirt
- Thread to match your shirt color
- 1 inch elastic
- sewing machine
- safety pin
- Marking Pencil
Start by turning your Tshirt inside out and laying it flat on your surface. Grab a dress in your closet that you like the shape of. I wanted mine to be some-what form fitting so I grabbed this work dress. Lay the dress over the T-shirt and trace it’s shape. Next, pin along the traced lines to hold the fabric in place.
Cut on the outside of your traced line. As close to the neckline of the T-shirt as possible, cut a straight line across. Aim to stay close to the neck so you can keep as much length as possible. I’m 5’2″ and this gives me plenty of length but if you’re taller you may consider a bigger T-shirt.
Sew the two sides of your dress, leaving the top open. Fold the top of the dress downwards 1 inch and pin down. Sew a straight line across at the bottom of the fold, leaving a 1 inch loop for the elastic. Leave both end open.
Next, wrap the elastic around your chest, where you’d normally wear a strapless top and measure the length needed. Cut and insert a safety pin on one end. Feed the elastic through the top of the dress using the safety pin to guide it through. You’ll probably have to bunch the fabric a little and that’s okay.
Sew the elastic together at the ends, then sew the hole shut. Flip your dress inside out (or I guess right side out!) and now you have your tailgate dress.
Turning your TailGate Dress into a Flapper Dress:
This is where I’d normally stop but since I wanted a 1920’s look, I’m going to add fringe across the front of the dress. I started one the seam below the elastic band at the top and sewed down my first strip of fringe. I didn’t pre-measure, just sewed along the seam and when I got to the end, cut off the excess. My fringe was about 3 inches wide so I measured all the way down the dress marking a line every 3 inches until I reach the bottom. I repeated sewing down each strip of fringe on the lines until I reached the bottom. And wahhlahh I had myself a flapper dress.