How many things can you make from one pair of overalls?

I tore my overalls apart this weekend and made three bags and a dress out of them. As usual, I was too impatient to take “before” photos, sigh. B&A is so nice for comparison. Oh well, everyone knows what bib overalls look like, right?

Blue overall dress-front Blue overall dress-back

I took the bib front and back off, for the new dress. The skirt is made from three layers of fabric, in a gypsy skirt style. Each layer is 10 inches wide, and 1.5 times longer than the previous layer. The first layer, below the bib, is 1.5 times the width of the bib (add front and back together). The last layer, a commercial eyelet lace with a bound edge, hems the skirt. The hem falls at mid-calf on me. I used Marianne’s tutorial at Applehead to learn how to make the skirt, which was very easy to follow.

This was a fun, fairly easy project, and I will do the same thing with a pair of jeans. I will probably add pockets to the bib skirt, as I can’t deal without them! And eventually I’d like to figure out a nice shirt to go with the dress. The blue tee is fine, but a collared shirt would be nicer. I’d also like to dress up the bib a little; probably by binding the edge in the striped fabric from the bottom panel, or maybe using the rest of the eyelet lace.

Small brimmed hat

The hat is a commercial pattern “Favorite Floral Hats”, from The City Stitcher Quilt Collection; not quite finished as I’m not sure I like the style yet. I’m thinking of shortening the crown, flipping the front of the brim down (sort of like the hats WACs wore in WWII), and then adding a flower to one side, or a hat band.

I also made three bags from the legs, taking advantage of the pockets as much as possible.

Purse one back Purse one front

Purse one: I took the front of the overalls, just below the bibs, and folded it in half so that the zippered opening (what do you call that? it’s so guys can pee) is in front. One back pocket and one side pocket are on the back of the purse. The shoulder strap is made from a strip of fabric from the bottom panel of the skirt, attached to the purse by D rings. The top is closed by a strip of fabric from the bottom panel of the skirt. The bottom is closed by a length of the eyelet lace. To get into the purse, you open the zipper in front. My favorite! But I should have put a banana on the inside, so it could be pulled out through the zippered opening. So rude! ๐Ÿ™‚

Purse two back purse two front

Purse two: The body of the bag is a single layer of denim from the bottom of one leg with the hem cut off (it was too dirty and shredded to use), about 10 inches high. The bottom is an oval, two layers of denim reinforced with a Peltex insert to stiffen the bottom. The pocket is a scrap of denim doubled. The lace at the top and on the pocket is vintage lace that I purchased several years ago at an estate sale in Oregon. The strap is attached with D rings, made of two layers of embroidered trim from my mother’s stash. I like this one too.

purse three front Purse three under flap

Purse three: The other half of the overalls just below the bibs. I was able to take advantage of one front pocket and one back pocket. The flap is made from the last of the legs, hemmed with some embroidered trim from my mom’s stash. The strap is attached with D rings, made of two layers of the embroidered trim sewed together (no interfacing or stiffener used; the trim was plenty stiff enough). I made a flapped pocket on the front; I always want a front pocket to hold my glasses seperately from all the junk in my bag. This bag is quite long (14″); too long in my opinion, but it would hold a LOT of stuff!

I’ll post photos of the bags ASAP; probably Friday. Sorry about that-time just slipped away from me this morning!

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4 responses to “How many things can you make from one pair of overalls?

  1. Wow, that a lot from one pair of pants! Wonderfull skirt, but where are the pictures of the bags?! ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. FYI – the zipper part is called the “fly.” Hence, Levi’s “button fly” jeans that were popular once upon a time. ๐Ÿ™‚ Cool project!

  3. Thanks for the info and the compliment Jen!

  4. I just love your creativity! I visit often and figured I best leave a comment. I hope you don’t mind my bragging your work on my blog.
    Toodie from Missourah…where the men are handsome the women purdy and young’ins well behaved

    Thank you Toodie!
    What a delightful comment! And thank you for “bragging my work”!! I need all the cheerleaders I can get, so that’s wonderful of you!
    I read through your blog, and you sound like a great character; I wish you lived in Alaska so we could sit down and visit. Maybe one of these days we can meet in the middle! ๐Ÿ™‚

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