Auntie’s antimacassar to skirt refashion

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This project started off as one thing (the bottom of a top) and ended up as something completely different (the top of a bottom)

When making my Refashioners denim dress I made a toile for the bodice.

It seemed a shame not to make a wearable garment out of this bodice so I headed to my stash for a suitable fabric partner and this is what I came up with.


This piece has a bit of a back story.  I inherited it in a case of household linens from my great aunt.  The fringe at only one end suggests to me that its some form of antimacassar .

I wouldn’t normally go using old pieces of fabric in a refashion, because I know this will speed up its demise,  but this woven piece had some damage already.


Consequently I decided to use it with the underside to the front, as its woven it still looks good this way round, just an inverse of the front.


This item has been stuck away in a cupboard since 1993 and before that I don’t ever remember my aunt having this thing in use. I honestly don’t think she would have objected to the refashion.


I  removed the fringe, which interestingly, had been added before the hem, cut the piece in half lengthways, and made a tube. The edges had been machine sewn with a long stitch.  It was just the right width to attach to my bodice, give or take a couple of darts at the back and a bit of shaping.



This could have been left as a top at this stage but I decided to continue and make a dress  because as a top it was a little too short and the stiffness of the antimacassar made it stick out a bit.

I cut some wedge shapes from the legs of 2 pairs of similar brown corduroy trousers I had in my stash.

The length of the wedges was limited by the knee to hem length of the trousers.

This pair was one I had been keeping as a sort of diet  ‘target’ pair.  They used to be comfortable about 10 years ago.


I  laid out the panels under the bodice then stitched all the wedges together to make a skirt piece and pinned it to the top.


Unfortunately it looked OK on the table but when being worn, the antimacassar just didn’t seem to sit in the right place, and also seemed a bit too stiff.

As I had now cut up this old piece of fabric I had a responsibility to it, so the bodice will have to wait for another day  and plan B was a skirt.

I unpicked the antimacassar from the bodice and sewed it onto the cord panels, having first adjusted the cord panels to fit the right size to fit the antimacassar.


This looked better but was not long enough for a skirt.  I decided to add a yoga type waistband to both increase the length and make the skirt super comfy and also I would not then need to add a zip.

I cut a long tube from a t-shirt donated to me by my daughter, shaping the tube with a waist in the middle so it was designed to be folded over.

I cut this tube a tight fit so it would be stretched and keep the skirt up – that’s the theory anyway. I am always going to be wearing a top to cover the waistband, it isn’t designed to be on show.


Finally, I didn’t want to take any length off the cord panel section for a hem, so made some bias binding from a pillowcase to bind the hem.


Here is the finished skirt.





It has only taken, one antique antimacassar, 2 pairs of trousers, one t-shirt and one pillowcase to make so I hope I get some wear out of it.




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