To Dye For

There once was a white dress

That I adored

But due to a staining black belt

I could wear it no more

Yet I refused to give in

So here’s what I did:


The Dress Before (I'm wearing it with a belt)


The Final Product

Here’s How:


2.5” White elastic -(enough to around your waist)

1 Dye for natural fabrics – I used Dylon Cold Water Dye #22 “Sahara Sun”

1 Cold Water Dye Fix- optional, read package instructions of dye to determine whether or not you will need this

1 Dye that can be used on nylon and/or lycra – I used Dylon Multi-Pupose Dye #33 “Kingfisher Blue”

Fabric – Measurement: 1.5x your hips and the length is completely up to you


The first few steps (mostly just involve dyeing) are in the gallery below, click on the images to make them bigger. After I cut the fabric I followed steps 3 to 8  from THIS tutorial to attach the elastic. THIS is another good tutorial on how to make an elastic waist skirt w/ pockets.

*Note: my skirt is not the same as in the tutorials because I only had the fabric from the original dress, which did not measure 1.5x my hip measurement. This meant that fabric wasn’t very wide so my skirt was more narrow and not as gathered and free flowing as the ones in the how-tos. (unfortunately)


My Convertible/Infinity Dress.

So I decided I wanted one of these.

While trying to find a retailer in Vancouver that sells convertible/infinity dresses I somehow wound up finding a tutorial for making one instead. I thought to myself, why not spend a quarter the cash but add a little effort and try making one of these babies? Best. Decision. Ever.

This is my first tutorial so brace yourselves for some wonky extensive instructions and I’ll probably end up repeating myself, so sorry in advance. I would suggest actually checking out the links I added in here and to use my tutorial for little bits of extra info. The other links explains most things (the really important things) better than I do. Here goes nothing.

I was able to make this dress using a few tutorials:

This, This, This & This for the circle skirt

This & This for the dress

I’ve also found this very useful tutorial for a different take on the infinity/convertible with a wider waistband and a two toned look.

The final result is a one seam convertible/infinity dress


Fabric: You’ll want to buy fabric that has at least 40% stretch. Jersey is great for this project but other stretchy materials will do, as long as they drape well and aren’t too bulky when you criss cross the straps onto each other.

I bought 7 meters (7.6 yards) of lycra jersey from the clearance section. Now, 7 meters is  a lot of fabric but the tutorials all said to have straps that were at least 1.5x your height, which equals 9 feet (3m) in my case and I also needed 4 meters for my skirt based on my calculations using this tutorial.

Components: To make this dress you need four pieces:  a circle for the skirt, two straps, and one piece for a “waist” band.

Photo source:

1. I had to cut out two half-circles to make my skirt. It’s possible to trace a full circle on one piece of fabric depending on how long you want you skirt to be (see This link for more info). Since I’m muy tall that wasn’t possible for me.

I started off by creating a half circle pattern for my circle skirt. I figured it would be way easier to trace this paper circle onto the fabric then to try to draw a circle directly onto this deceivingly slippery material. My mom had dropped off a bunch of huge 2010 calendars that were extras from her office. I taped a few together to have a big enough sheet of paper to trace my circle. You could probably do this just as easily with a few poster boards taped together.

I traced my circle onto the paper by pinning the end of my measuring tape to the top edge of the paper and rotating it around so that it acted like a compass. Like this (imagine the string is a measuring tape):

Again, this is a great tutorial on how to trace a circle skirt pattern.

Before anything could happen some simple math was required. To know where to trace the waistband circle (that’s the cutout part you see above) you must find X.

X= Waist Measurement ÷ 6.28

6.28 is Pi times 2. We use this calculation because the Circumference= 2r π. If you’re like “wtf, mate?” don’t worry about it, just know that this calculation works.

Moving on, let’s assume that X = 10”. You will now trace a circle using you measuring tape at the 10” mark. There you have it: your waistband hole.

IMPORTANT NOTE! Because Lycra Jersey is so stretchy, the hole I cut out, while the right size for any other fabric, ended up being too big and not fitting snugly at my waist (whish is what you want for this dress), You may want to be very conservative when tracing out and cutting out your waistband circle. maybe trace it to half the size it’s actually supposed to be. It’s much easier to make the hole bigger than it is to make it small

Now you’re ready to trace the actual length of the skirt. BUT because I had already traced an area for my waist and I didn’t want to lose the proper length of my skirt (I wanted it to go from my waist to my knee) I had to do some more math. My skirt length was 32”/82cm, I added the 10” from the waistband and traced my skirt at the 42”/107cm mark. This way the skirt would fall at the right place.

2. Cut out your material for the circle skirt.

3. Cut out the material for your waistband. This should be as long as your waist measurement and about 1.5-2” wide. Fold in half, pin and leave aside.

4. Lay both half circles on top of each other and pin together the side seams.

5. sew the side seams together.

I sewed this dress using a straight stretch stitch and tried not to stretch out the fabric too much while it was going through the machine so that it wouldn’t pucker.

6. Try on your skirt to make sure it fits

This is what happened earlier, my waistband hole was too big and I ended up with this 😦 ‘Twas a very sad moment in my life. Until I fixed it by taking it in. a lot.

7. Time for the straps. To decide how wide to make your straps, measure from the center of your bust to just under your arm. The suggested length for the straps is 1.5 times your height. Cut out your straps. I used my brother’s snowboard to trace my cutting line. That is until I realized snowboards are curved and so i used a long piece of cardboard as a guide instead.

9. Now its time for the assembly. The key to this to to remember to lay the right sides together.

The point of the waistband is to give your skirt a finished look in case the back is exposed. Though the waistband is rarely seen because it’s often covered up by the straps when they’re tied  there are some styles where the back of the skirt is completely visible.

Source for this instruction step:

Turn your skirt inside out–you are going to sew from the INSIDE of the waist–which means you don’t need a free arm on your machine.  overlap the straps 3″-4″…

Photo source:

…and align the raw edges with the raw edge of the skirt waist.  then take your waistband and lay it on top of the straps, the raw edges aligned with the skirt and strap edges.  you will have 5 layers of fabric on top of each other.  START SEWING AT THE OVERLAP.  (for now just ignore the fact that only one end of the band is in place).  when you get around to where you started sewing, overlap the band and cut the excess band, then finish sewing.  the band ends will not meet–they will overlap, but they will be hidden by the straps):

this is the one and only seam. (if you made the skirt using one full circle instead of 2 half circles)

Photo source:

when the dress is done, it will look like this:

Photo source:

10. Rock your new convertible dress!

I still have a ton of left over fabric from 3m of fabric i used for cutting out two 12” x 9′ straps (basically I have 3m/9′ of fabric that went from being 150cm/59” wide to 90cm/35” wide)  I plan on making a LeSac dress for an amiga sometime this week (more on that at a later date).



Milk and Cereal or Cereal and Milk?

When I was traveling in Haiti I remember my grandma making the remark that she thought it was weird that I would pour my cereal into my bowl first followed by the milk. She said that she always did it the other way around. I was flabbergasted! Milk then cereal? Whaaaaa??!?!

I have decided that this phenomenon is due to the fact that Haitians don’t watch an insane amount of tv as we North Americans are prone to do. As a result the average Haitian child isn’t bombarded with images of a certain Toucan Sam announcing that neon coloured loops are part of a complete breakfast while pouring milk on top of them.

What say you? milk and cereal or cereal and milk? This may just tear the world apart. Especially with these three mofos singing about it:

Still Travellin’

Side note:

The voltage here is different and my computer keeps zapping me. Dangerous?

Travel Do’s:

– Wear the most comfortable clothes you own.

– If you have a long lay over, definetely get a pedicure

– That baby that won’t stop crying on the airplane? Don’t send evil stares at its parents, he’s probably crying cause the cabin pressure is killing his ears.

– Do keep the PDA to a minimum. Planes are close quarters and nobody wants to see that.

– If the airline offers free booze, take it.

And more importantly here is a list of Travel Dont’s:

–  DO NOT wear shoes that are too small. Yo.ur feet will eventually feel like they’re about to explode

–  Don’t sit in the middle seat, your row mates will be armrest hogs and you’ll be squished like you’ve never been squished before.

– Don’t sit next to old people, they ask a lot of questions.

– Don’t try to pet the drug-sniffing dogs.

– Don’t sexually assault the flight attendants, no matter how hot they are. They have the ability to make your flight hell, don’t tempt them to do so.

And We’re Off….sort of.

So my (embarrassingly) massive backpack is packed and this girl is ready to GO!!! I’m waiting for my mom at the Greyhound station to go to Seattle. Our bus is leaving in 15 minutes and she’s still not here (what else is new?). We have to catch this bus or we’re screwed. What’s gonna happen next??? Will we make it? Where is my mother? What happened to her? stay tuned….

Who Do I Think I Am?

I was crossing the street on Granville and Robson after class a while ago. Before I made it to the other side of the street, I saw a homeless girl sitting on the corner I was approaching, directly facing the sidewalk. I was immediately convinced of two things: one, the girl was definitely close to my age and two, I didnt want to make eye contact with her. As I crossed all I could think was, “don’t look her way, don’t make eye contact, she’s gonna bug me for some money.” Because I was the only person crossing the street at that moment I knew she would at the very least notice me coming her way. She would also notice that I was blatantly ignoring her. I suceeded in making it across the street without even glancing in her direction. The second I passed her, I literally felt my stomach clench from guilt, discomfort, and even embarassment. I wasn’t embarrased for myself, oh no, I had the audacity to be embarrased for her. You see, I was convinced I was better than her and that she deserved to be pitied.

I continued walking without looking back and by the time I had made it to the next block, I had conjured a mental image of myself in her shoes. Along with the mental picture I imagined all the emotions I would feel were I in her position. How hurt would I be if someone didn’t even consider me worthy of eye contact? I was extremely upset with myself. What was wrong with me? Since when do I not even have the decency to acknowlegdge another human being?, I wondered. I didn’t even know for a fact whether or not that girl would have asked me for change. For all I knew, that girl was my age and she could have been a fellow college student if her circumstances had been different, for all I knew she has dreams and aspirations for a brighter future just as I do, she would like to be successful and happy just as I do. As my dad would say, “somewhere, society failed her” and I felt as if I had failed her as well along with the rest of society.

By some random act of fate, when I got home I stumbled upon this video from Current. At the very beginning of the clip, I once again made an immediate judgment and thought Zeta man, the interviewee, was a total wacko who had some kind of bizarro childhood-superhero-fantasy complex. And once again, I was wrong. I judged too soon. In actuality these two men deserve at teh very least acknowledgment, respect and accolade. As Agent Null said, “At least we’re trying, at least we’re out these, and that’s more than most people can say.” It definitely is more that I can say.