DIY Kimonos & Crochet Dresses

May 8, 2014

May Blog 477

You see this kimono right here? I made it! I've been wanting my own boho kimono for years now, but I've never been too crazy about the prices. I've seen a couple cute ones at Forever 21 lately, but when I glimpsed the price tags all I could think about was how many burgers and beers I could buy with that money. Oh, the siren song of burgers. So I decided to do what any other self-respecting thrifter would do: make my own and for a fraction of the price. So, on a mission, I went to the charity shops and hunted down a dress with a pattern that I could see working with a great deal of outfits...and one that was only two dollars. Yes, that will do nicely. So I took my dress-that-costs-less-than-a-coffee home, cut it down the middle, and then proceeded to thread fringe all along the bottom and sleeves. The threading took some time, but I put on Lady and the Tramp and made an evening out of it, so the labor wasn't all that bad. And voila- I finally have this staple in my closet! Oh, happy day. 

And I thought it would be just the right thing to shrug over my Rebel Closet crochet dress. It's a simple, slinky little dress, but I like how the crochet texture instantly makes you feel like you're knees deep in summer. And Rebel Closet is an absolute gamble between sweet and edgy. You just never know what you'll find in there: a witch-y sheer kimono...or a tulip printed romper in candy colors? A black velvet maxi dress...or a sailor collar playsuit? Based in LA, each item in the shop is picked because it's bold and playful, and because the owner, Alisa, understands a girl has many faces. Sometimes we feel like playing dress up in a Betty Draper dress, and sometimes we want to wear something short and heavy with fringe. It can't be helped. If you're in the mood to shop today, I'd definitely recommend checking them out here. Especially since you can get 15% off at checkout with coupon code MSNK15And go swoon over this one patchwork dress I've been eyeing for over a week now ;)


And here are some of my favorite picks from Rebel Closet- that tulip romper is too sweet for words!


outfit-details copy
DRESS: c/o Rebel Closet (similar: herehere here
KIMONO: DIYed from a thrifted dress
HAT: Urban Outfitters (similar: here)
LIPSTICK: Wet n' Wild


Follow Messages on a Napkin on:



  1. Awesome! love your long kimono!

  2. ooh I like the scarf cardi- looks awesome this time of the year!

  3. oh my god.. it's beautiful!! That is such a pretty DIY.

  4. Oh wow, such a crafty idea! I've also been thrown by the cost of kimonos despite their overall loveliness. What a great way to have your own without the crazy price! ox


  5. I would be interested to see how you added the fringe!

  6. This is GENIUS. I'm going to have to do this, too. Thanks for sharing, Marlen!

    Love, Amy

  7. I love this!!! You look like your channeling Stevie Nicks...

    Courtney ~ Sartorial Sidelines

  8. dude good job on that kimono! DIY is awesome! i hate how kimonos are so ridiculously priced. i bought one on sale at threadsence for the sole purpose of taking the pattern and making one i truly loved lol

    at this volume

  9. Awesome job on that wonderful kimono! The fringes are a fantastic touch. :D

  10. WHOA! I am super impressed, I've said it before and I'll say it again "You're an awesome thrifter"

    Seriously--that kimono looks AWESOME and I bet if you felt "inspired" one evening and went and made some other ones and sold them on your etsy shop, people would definitely like them.

    Awesome look, and great idea with the fringe!

    Andrea Fer, Not Quite Grown Up Guide

  11. this is so pretty, love the print of the fabric!

  12. I love it! Such a genius idea I wish I could sew! Also the crochet dress is amazing, I love that its a longer length too but so simple.

  13. I'm definitely getting flapper vibes. Really friggin sweet flapper vibes.

  14. So chic and I love that you made it!

  15. What a great idea! I feel like I haven't been very creative lately about altering things from the thrift store. This is perfect inspiration for some things I have lying around the house.


  16. You made this?!? You look so badass :) You could totally be owning the streets of LA in this outfit haha. And thanks for penciling me in - I'll be there July 17th-21st and I'm staying in Wicker Park. Super excited to check out Chicago!

  17. wow!!!! this is such an adorable 'vintage' outfit!!! I love it <3

  18. Hooray for DIY! It looks pretty fantastic. Also the crochet dress fits you beautifully.

  19. wow, that diy piece is so lovely! <3 I am obsessed with kimono lately, I really love this look!

    kisses from Bali,

  20. Well done! I love it! This is the perfect kimono.

  21. Girl you are incredible! And you make it sound so easy too. I've been trying to save for a Spell one though they keep on selling out before I can do that!


  22. Wow! Can't believe you made that. Multi-talented woman you are! It looks flawless. And I love that you'd rather spend your money on burgers and beer *kindred*

  23. I love that it only cost you a few dollars and it looks so great, plus no one else will have it.
    You have inspired me :)

    Gems x
    Fashion, Well Done

  24. Wow, I think this is one of my favourite outfits from you! I love it! I love knits ... and a crochet kimono? What could be better!

  25. omg I'm OBSESSED with this outfit! I can't believe you made that kimono.

  26. Marlen! That's amazing! I did not think at all that it was a DIY, you did such a great job! A beautiful boho look, dear :)

  27. Loving the hat paired with the whole outfit!
    Style is always great

  28. Yes! You go girl with the craftiness! I've been searching for a dress that I can do something similar with, but I haven't found one as good as yours!

    Also...Lady and the Tramp ftw.

  29. So pretty !
    I Love that kimono so much !


  30. oh, i love the kimono, you did such a nice job! and i also like the dress! xx

  31. Hahah,I think the same thing, just replace burgers with burritos, lol! :D Forever 21 has some awesome stuff, but damn they don't ship to Bulgaria, sniff...
    I love how this kimono turned out, you're a genius! It looks amazing on you! ^_^

  32. You made a FABULOUS kimono! I love handsewing with a movie on in the background, and if I find the right thrifted dress for it, I'll definitely take on this project. 


Talk, talk, talk!

f16bf93391' type='text/javascript'/>