Friday, September 6, 2013

An Ombre Dyed Gauze Hippie Dress

I have been going through my clothes lately, trying to weed out what I don't wear and find out what new things I need to make or purchase. I came across a little white gauze dress I made a few summers ago. I wore it a few times but it was never a staple. The fact it was white was enough to make me pass over it when selecting an outfit because, well, I have small children. Plus, the way it is cut the dress requires a strapless bra and I have never had good results with a strapless bra. You may as well wear nothing by way of support.

I was inspired this time, though, to make this over into something useable. I just finished a new dress that I want to ombre dye but I was nervous about dyeing it without practicing first. This dress was just the thing for a trial run!

I had half a bottle of RIT wine colored liquid dye. I dumped it in a plastic bucket with hot water and a cup of salt and stirred it. I wetted my dress and then dyed it by slowly lowering it into the dye.

It took about a half hour and the dress came out with four (five if you could the very top) rather distinct shades. It wasn't as dramatic a look as I had planned, but I was still very happy with how it worked and now this dress has gone from an impractical white gown to a very serviceable dark colored dress that will be cool and comfortable for the remainder of the summer.

And what better way to fix the problem of the strapless bra than to wear a blouse underneath? I don't know why I didn't think of this before. Now I feel supported and covered, which are good things! This particular blouse is from my dirndl outfit. I really like it because it stops just below the bust and is fitted there with elastic, so it doesn't ride up or cause unflattering bunching at the waistline as many blouses are prone to do.

The zipper in the back didn't dye, unfortunately. And I'm not very good at putting in zippers and was even less so back when I made this. So. . .you can see the zipper. But I've decided to not worry about it, and to just wear the dress and be happy.

Now to tackle the linen dress. I wanted to dye it in shades of blue but almost everything I make or wear is blue. . .so I think I will try green this time. Or maybe brown, though that may look rather like I just dragged my dress through the mud instead of actually dying it. Orange and cream? It would be pumpkiny and pumpkiny is good for this time of the year!


P.S. Thank you all for your really kind congratulations! You all are the best! I am due in April (I think) and so far, so good. Except names. I have one picked out for both a boy and a girl but David is being contrary and has decided he detests them. Sigh. I think after compromising with 4 I deserve at least one child to name all by myself, right?


  1. It looks amazing with that white lace blouse! Great work!

    I love blue, but now that I have so much blue fabric I am suddenly wanting dresses in burgundy and black! Maybe you can have too much of a good thing. Still, if you always wear blue, at least you know you will wear it. If you make it a colour you aren't sure of you might never wear it!

  2. That is SO true! I have some things in my closet that I loved the style of but never wear because they aren't colors I like. I typically wear blues, browns, greys and greens with some neutrals. Boring colors, but, well, its what I wear. :/

  3. Super cute! I think that you didn't think of wearing a blouse underneath before because it was white. It's easier to wear a white top with a colored dress than a white dress with a colored top. Can't wait to see your next ombre project.

  4. Sarah, you are so beautiful! The dress came out lovely and looks fantastic with the blouse. I am quite a fan of that style.

    Congratulations on the new babe on the way! I say you ought to name the little one whatever you please, you're doing all the work after all. :P What names are you thinking? I am most curious.

  5. I've been thinking of trying ombre dying, yours turned out beautifully! I might actually dare give it a try now :)

    The idea with the short blouse might be one I'll use too - I have a *lovely* fabric that I want to make a blouse out of, but I don't have enough to make a full lenght one. As I intend to wear it under bodices and jumper style dresses it would work with a short blouse. I usually prefer quite long ones, so I can give them hem a tug after putting the dress on, and make the blouse not bunch up so much at the neckline, but as I don't have enough....

  6. Thanks everyone!

    Am in the middle of dying my linen dress now. . .I am so nervous! I hope it comes out okay. I decided to mix both blue and green for it. Because I know I will wear those colors!

    Hazard, thank you for your support. ;)

    For a girl I was set on the name Rose Elanor Jane and for a boy Abraham Jacob Paul. David doesn't like any of those names! I haven't given up hope of converting him yet, but in the meantime the two tentative names we do agree on:

    Elizabeth Katherine Jane


    Joseph Albert Edward

  7. Oh I like the compromise names! They're beautiful! But if you like the others better... I like your dress a lot! :)

  8. You look so incredibly cute in that outfit. So pretty!


Thank you for your lovely thoughts!