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How to change overalls to dresses

Updated February 21, 2017

Overalls or dungarees, which are trousers with an attached bib and suspenders, were originally made from denim and used as work clothes. Today, some people still use overalls for work, and children often wear them as well. These play clothes come in many different fabrics and colours, and also come in a dress version for little girls. You can create an overalls dress out of a standard pair of overalls with a few simple sewing manoeuvres.

Put on the pair of overalls you plan to transform into an overalls dress. Have a friend help you mark the desired dress length on the legs of the overalls using a fabric pencil.

Take off the overalls. Lay them out on a flat surface and measure down 2.5 cm (1 inch) from your marking. Make another marking at this point.

Cut through the fabric at the last marking, removing the bottom sections of the legs. Save the extra leg pieces.

Cut the legs apart along the inside seams, following close to the stitching lines. If possible, you can also take the inside seams apart with a seam ripper to allow for more material.

Measure the distance between the hemline and the bottom of the centre front seam. Add 2.5 cm (1 inch).

Put on the overalls again. Have a friend measure the distance between the gaps at the front and back of the skirt. Add 2.5 cm (1 inch).

Remove the overalls. Take the extra leg fabric and cut two triangles that are as tall as the measurement from between the hemline and the bottom of the centre front seam plus 2.5 cm (1 inch), and as wide at the bottom as the measurement from the distance between the gaps at the front and back of the skirt plus another 2.5 cm (1 inch).

Pin a triangle to the gap at the centre front and another to the gap at the center back, with the right sides of the fabric facing one another.

Sew the triangles to the skirt, using 1.25 cm (1/2 inch) seam allowances. Press the seams open.

Turn up the hem 1.25 cm (1/2 inch) and then the same amount again. Sew the hem down and then press it flat with the iron. Turn the overalls dress right side out.

Things You'll Need

  • Fabric pencil
  • Scissors
  • Tape measure
  • Pins
  • Sewing machine
  • Thread
  • Iron
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About the Author

A writer with a Bachelor of Science in English and secondary education, but also an interest in all things beautiful, Melissa J. Bell has handed out beauty and fashion advice since she could talk -- and for the last six years, write for online publications like Daily Glow and SheBudgets.