I am super excited about how my remix on the Sullivan Dress turned out. I love the original, you can check it out here, but for our family pictures I had a dress in mind I wanted to make Kina. Instead of coming up with a new design, I decided to hack the Sullivan dress to come up with the dress I wanted.
I was envisioning a lace bodice, a poofy tulle bottom with pom pom trim. As much as I love sleeveless dresses, I decided I needed to add sleeves to this dress so I didn’t have to worry about a cardigan during the winter. On to the hack!
(We started out with our hair down, it was at this point I decided I better put it up haha!!)
First I decided to turn the short sleeve into a long sleeve. To do this, I first measured K’s arm length and wrist girth. Then I laid the sleeve on a large piece of paper. I like to use medial paper for pattern making. Make a straight line the length of the sleeve from the center of the sleeve head. From there add the desired ease you want to the wrist opening then divide that in half. Draw a line, that same amount, on either side of the bottom of the center sleeve length mark. Draw a diagonal line to connect the sleeve head to the wrist line.
On to the bodice. I straightened out the side seam to be more straight down from the armpit. I also added 2″ of length because I wanted it to hit lower on K. You wouldn’t have to add length if you didn’t want, I just did for personal preference. For the bottom layer of the skirt, I cut two pieces 20″ wide by my desired length. The pattern calls for 25″ for the size I made. On the other hand, for the tulle, I cut two pieces 28″ wide. I cut three layers of tulle. The first layer was 1″ longer than the skirt layer. From there I cut each layer to be 3″ shorter than the previous layer.
To assemble the dress, I followed most of the directions. I did assemble the lining so there was no seam allowance showing. Since I planned on sewing the bodice to the skirt, I didn’t need to follow the lining assembly instructions as the pattern calls for. On the sleeve, I did a french seam since I was working with lace. I also did a french seam on the tulle skirt pieces as well. I basted the skirt pieces and gathered them to match the bottom of the bodice. I then layered them on top of each other and basted all four layers together. After the layers were basted I attached the skirt to the bodice and sewed through all layers. In the Sullivan pattern is has to attach the skirt to the lining, I sewed the lining and bodice to the skirt so there is no layers free hanging. It works for this style, but obviously not for the original Sullivan Dress. Because I didn’t want a seam showing, I opted to sew the elastic to the seam allowance and not create a casing like the pattern calls for. Since I sewed it a bit different I would have created stitching on the outside if I had created a casing.
After everything was done, I simply sewed trim to the bottom of the tulle! I am in love with how it turned out!
Measurements: Chest: 19″, Waist: 19″, Hips 19.5″ Height 35″
Size Sewn: 18-24 months
Modifications: Added long sleeves, straightened bodice side seams, lengthened bodice and skirt to fit my tall lady, added three layers of tulle, sewed bodice and skirt completely together.
Cost: $2.97 for Tulle, $3.49 for Lace, $8.45 for trim. The rest of the fabric was left over from another project. Total: $14.91