Easy thrift flip. Upcycle a dress into a skirt in 10 minutes.

thrift flip upcycle dress into skirt

Quick upcycling project and easy sewing tutorial for beginners.

In this upcycling and sewing tutorial, I transformed a dress into a skirt and then added the sleeves to a top. I bought the dress from my local thrift store for $2. Nobody wanted it and it was on the last chance rack, destined for landfill within a couple of days.
Watch YouTube sewing tutorial below.

I loved the colour and the light crepe fabric. The dress style didn’t suit me but I knew it would be an easy upcycling project because there was an invisible zip in the side seam and a built in waist band.

This upcycling project couldn’t be any easier! Also, the sleeves had a pretty lace detail and I just loved them. So, let’s get started.

The first step was to cut the skirt from the top of the dress ensuring to cut enough extra fabric for the new waist hem.

Next, I pinned a new waist hem seam and top-stitched this on the sewing machine.

And I’m done! That’s a 10 minute upcycling project. I told you it couldn’t be any easier.

Sewing tutorial – Adding puffy sleeves to a top

I couldn’t resist using those pretty sleeves and decided to add them to an upcycling project I had in progress.

When cutting the sleeves from the top, I made sure I left enough fabric to attach the sleeves to the top. Then I top-stitched them in place.

And here the skirt is finished. It’s so light and pretty and dreamy. I love it. And here are the sleeves on their new top. I’ve even worn the top and skirt together to work.

Thanks for stopping by.

See you next time,

clothes upcycling

Why clothes upcycling is important.

Clothes upcycling promotes a more sustainable, creative, and responsible approach to fashion, all of which contributes to a healthier planet and a more sustainable future.

Environmental Impact

Clothes upcycling helps reduce waste by repurposing old or unwanted garments, often diverting them from landfill.

With the fashion industry being one of the planets largest polluters, upcycling and repurposing clothing reduces the need for new materials and decreases carbon emissions associated with the product and disposal of clothing.


Traditional clothing manufacturing consumes significant amounts of water, energy, and raw materials.

Upcycling clothing not only extends the life of existing textiles, conserving these valuable resources, but promotes more sustainable consumption patterns.


Creative Expression

Upcycling clothes and other materials encourages creative freedom by transforming old clothes into unique, personalised garments.

Upcycling and sewing fosters innovation and encourages people to experiment with designs, creating one-of-a-kind items that reflect personal style and creativity.

Cost Effective

Upcycling clothing can be very cost-effective by reducing money spent purchasing new clothes but can also assist charities when clothes are purchased second hand from charities.

Quality and Longevity

Repairing and mending clothing enhances the longevity of existing garments, giving them longevity in your wardrobe and limiting the need to purchase new clothes.  This contrasts with fast fashion items, which are frequently designed for short-term use.