How to Refashion a Thrift Store Dress into a 1920’s Style Outfit

I have for you something different today! A video tutorial on how I refashioned this,  well… rather drab 70’s dress into a great 1920’s style outfit! It didn’t require a lot of work, most of the work was in taking down the size and now I have one of my new favorite dresses!

I wear ‘newer’ vintage items ( ie from the 70’s and 80’s) that I have refashioned and styled into a more period look all the time! And it is one of the things I get asked about the most! So I decided to film myself in the process of making this one!

It is the first time I have done a tutorial like this, and in  my new goal ‘To get every smart fashionable lady just like you  sewing and refashioning their own fabulous outfits’, I endeavor to  do more like this!

As you won’t be able to replicate or copy exactly what I have done here, as there is only one of these items! It is to serve as more inspiration and see what I have done, so you can get your creative juices going and create new gems for yourself, just like this one!

This dress is probably from the  1970’s or 80’s, I picked it up for just a few dollars at the thrift store.

In looking for a dress to refashion into a 1920’s style my tips are to look for

  • Straight shapes – ‘sack like’ fitting
  • No, or dropped waistlines
  • Below the knee length
  • Scoop necklines
  • Sleeveless

This one fit the bill nicely! Here is a before shot


What alterations I made to this dress

  • Take in the dress at the side seams
  • Reshaped darts and add more fitting
  • Added the collar and bow detail
  • Shortened the sleeves

And that was it! It didn’t take too long at all and didn’t require too many technical skills! I go into more details in the video of course. And this is the fabulous 1920’s style dress I now have.

And this is the fabulous 1920’s style dress I now have




I hope this has given you a little inspiration on just what you can do with old clothing to give it a new lease on life and refashion it into something fabulously vintage style!

Let me know what you thought of the video! Was it too long? Or did you want to see more of the actual sewing process? Let me know your feedback for the next one!

And of course, let me know if you if you try something like this yourself!!!!

sign off




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About Evelyn

Vintage fashion designer and style blogger

5 thoughts on “How to Refashion a Thrift Store Dress into a 1920’s Style Outfit

    1. Hi Porcelina! Thankyou! Yes, I do think it is a gift I have as I never understand when someone says ‘they just can’t imagine it’! It is one of my favourite things to do and I love creating new things like this!

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