Another dollar item from last week's shopping, I bought a dated, tacky-tribal mu-mu to use as at-home loungewear. I loved the substantial rayon fabric and the colors. But after wearing it around the house for a few hours, I felt decidedly un-fab, even with the fucshia obi belt that I added to take up some length and add some structure. It was enormous on me: the neckline was gaping and short sleeves reached my elbows.

Heady with the success of my dress to top conversion the day before,
I decided to try to re-make (upcycle?) it. Then an Express catalog came in the mail and I was even more inspired. I have wanted a boxy, flowy, boho blouse that wasn't see-through, didn't have a low neckline, wasn't too voluminous and wasn't made out of a synthetic material. Oh, and I didn't want to pay a fortune for it either.

So, after 10 hours of manual labor (including about 673 fittings) this is the result. I'm curious to see if I got all of the traces of dated and tacky out of it! If the fabric print doesn't pass muster, what do you think about the shape of the top? Could I use it as a prototype? Is it too long to wear with a skirt?

Optional details for sewing/design geeks:
I removed the side seams and the sleeves, took up the shoulder seam 2 inches, and cut it to actually stop at the edge of my shoulder, then I re-shaped the sleeves, using another shirt for a guide. I used what was left of the original neckline, but I flipped it back to front because the shallow V-neck looked dated to my eye. I changed the shape of the body of the garment to an A-line (as much as possible) instead of the tapered V-shape it was before. Then I borrowed a top of my daughter's to draw the slightly asymmetrical hem, which I stitched by hand. I wasn't completely happy with the sleeves, but at that point I didn't have the motivation to take them off and fuss with them any more, so I turned them up a notch and tacked them. Now it has just enough ease to slip over my head without any type of closure. It's cool and breezy, and can stand alone, with no cami under and any topper is completely optional, IMO. Another reason I love this type of fabric is that it drip dries beautifully and can go without ironing and still look pretty good. What say you?

Pics 1-3 the top
Pic 4 my inspiration (Express catalog)
Pic 5 before shot of the mu-mu
Pic 6 the top I used to copy the hemline
Pic 7 the top I used to copy the neckline/sleeves (very pretty but too wide, short, transparent and made of polyester)

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