how to sew an old navy dress

Step 1: Attempt to buy an Old Navy dress.

It will be on sale! But you won’t buy it. But then you’ll change your mind! It will no longer be available in your size. But then you’ll order it from their website! But then a week later they will tell you they don’t have it in your size there, either. And then it will no longer be on sale, anyway.


Step 2: Attempt to sew an Old Navy dress.

Fail wildly.


Maybe you can’t really tell, but this thing is so tight I literally can’t put my arms straight down. I almost couldn’t get this thing off. I thought for a while there that I was going to have to CUT it off of me. (Which would have been especially difficult, since I couldn’t move my arms far enough to reach my scissors.) It left little red rings around my armpits after I took it off, after having had it on for all of like five minutes to take a photo.

(Um. Also please not to notice the knee-high-athletic-socks-and-clamdiggers look I’m rocking there.)

Step 3: Attempt to sew another Old Navy dress.

Fail a little better.


(Also, hello flattering camera angle! My journalistic integrity insists that I point out that I am not actually this skinny in real life?)

Step 4: Buy an Old Navy dress in an uglier color.

Shrug, it’s fine.


Step 5: Trace it. Then sew a goddamn Old Navy dress.

This is one of those awesome tricks that look like magic in sewing. I mean…maybe this doesn’t work for, you know, some dresses, but if you want to make a knit dress with like three seams and no darts, or whatever? You can pretty much just fold it in half and trace around it onto new fabric, and that’s a pattern right there.


Huh. Okay, that’s educational: I’ve been wearing those tights and those shoes with this dress a bunch lately, because I thought it was a super-cute combo. I…am realizing now that I was mistaken. All right. Noted. Hmm.

Step 6: Return the Old Navy dress in an uglier color.

(Okay so actually I keep forgetting to do this part. I…really need to fucking do this soon. It’s getting to be, like, too late, almost. I’m very lazy.)

Incidentally, I also totally made a Target dress, too. I make stuff.





(I am a very good model.)

Actually, seeing those two dresses side-by-side and in the exact same pose does kind of prove that mine is not as good as theirs. Boo. Oh well. Mine is greener, damnit, and that counts for something.


And now that Old Navy and Target are conquered, I’m moving on to…Oscar de la Renta. This will probably be about the same, right?


(Erm…note: I am not actually BUYING the Oscar de la Renta first, to fold it up and lay it on the floor and trace around it and then return it. So uh. Wish me luck.)

(Other note: I wrote most of this post a long time ago, and just kept not taking the photos. See above: “laziness.” the Oscar de la Renta is totally done! I…left the camera that all of the photos of it are on in DC, so I’ll tell you all about it as soon as I get those back, sometime after Christmas, I guess. Wheeee!!)

P.S. –



  1. kelly’s avatar

    i miss you SO much.

    also, have you been working out? looking good mami!!!

  2. Chris’s avatar

    I never imagined I would be able to use this phrase in context, but: Lady, That’s My Skull!

  3. Shena’s avatar

    You are the best model!

  4. Jessica formerly known as Gish’s avatar

    good job with the sewing! i always think i will sew stuff but rarely ever do.

  5. Meredith’s avatar

    Sewing date in February! I need to sew my fifty-million yards of grey jersey into Old Navy and Target dresses, wheeeeeeeeee!