Turning flour sacks and sugar sacks into clothing used to be a common practice but it doesn’t happen much anymore. When I came across a stash of old sugar bags, I had to do something with them. Finding an all-cotton button down shirt with a homespun feel brought the whole project into focus.
The bags became a skirt and the shirt became the bodice. They were grafted together with a little hand-weaving. The formerly short sleeves were extended using the shirttail with that lovely curved hemline.
Plain white shirt buttons were a no go. Snazzy red was definitely called for. (Those two buttons at the lapels are stitched in place. You can’t unbutton them.)
The stuffy shirt collar also had to go. Instead, the neckline is designed to fray about 1 cm (.5″).
The bottom of the dress has an uneven hemline that is also designed to fray slightly.
This dress is 100% cotton. The fabric will withstand machine washing and drying but the printing on the bags will not. Handwash in cold water and hang to dry away from direct bright sunlight for best results. (It makes for a more authentic pioneer experience, right?)
Garment measurements are below. Please note that garment measurements for non-stretch items like this one, should be slightly larger than your body measurements to allow for ease (ie wiggle-room when wearing it).
Bust: 102 cm (40″)
Waist: 79 cm (31″)
Hips: 183 cm (72″)
Sleeve length shoulder to cuff: 48 cm (19″)
Shoulder to shoulder: 56 cm (22″)
(This is a dropped-shoulder design. The sleeve length and shoulder to shoulder measurements correspond to where the seams are on the dress. The narrower your shoulders are, the longer the sleeves will be for you.)
Center back from neck to hem: 104 cm (41″)
Circumference at hem: 185 cm (73″)