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photos by rad and happy
The lace-up trend is one of my favorites for 2016. It’s a simple detail that adds so much to a top or dress. I’ve been wanting to make a lace-up dress for ages, and finally am now getting around to it.
I picked up this super light chambray at Jo-Ann’s earlier this year and have been waiting for an excuse to use it. It’s such a light, summery fabric, so it was perfect for this summer dress.
Here’s how to make it:
  • 1 1/2 – 2 yards chambray fabric (I bought mine at Jo-Ann’s about six months ago)
  • matching thread
  • large eyelets
  • long shoe lace or cord (I needed about 1 1/2 yards)
1. Take your fabric and fold both sides in toward the middle so they (almost) touch, as shown. Now both outside edges should be folded edges. First, cut the FRONT of the dress. Use a tank top and a pencil skirt as a pattern, folding them in half and laying them on the folded edge. Cut around them, adding a 1/2″ seam allowance. Repeat for the BACK of the dress, making the neckline a few inches higher. Next, cut out 2 SLEEVES, and a NECKLINE LINING front and back (cut the scoop of the lining exactly as you did the necklines on the FRONT and BACK, but making them 2″ shorter in width so they have to be stretched when attached to the dress). 
2. Next, take the FRONT and BACK pieces and, with right sides together, sew them together at the shoulders. 
3. Now attach the sleeves. Line up the top of the SLEEVE with the shoulder seam of the dress (right sides together), and then pin them together, Then sew a straight stitch along the sleeve, attaching it to the dress. Repeat for the second sleeve. 
4. With right sides together, sew your dress from the end of the sleeve to the bottom of the dress, matching up the seams at the armpit. 
Then cut a slit down the center of the neckline. My slit was about 5” long — you can do shorter or longer depending on your preference. 
5. Take your two NECKLINE LINING pieces and, with right sides together, sew them together at the ends. They should now form a circle. 
6. Sew around your neckline, attaching the NECKLINE LINING. When you get to the slit, sew down the sides of the slit and bring your stitches to a point at the bottom. You can see a picture of what I’m talking about in this blog post here.
7. Sew with a straight wide stitch around the entire neckline, securing the lining in place. Then try on the dress and determine your desired sleeve and dress length, then hem. And you’re done!
8. Insert the eyelets using the instructions on the packaging. I used this tool to insert them. Then lace it up and you’re done!