DIY lace sleeves are a great way to modify a strapless dress. The sleeves make the strapless dress less revealing and yet very classy and sexy. They can also help hide the straps of your bra and give you a piece of mind so you don’t have to pull the strapless dress up all the time, dreading the thought of it slipping down. Here is an easy way to make them yourself. Below are the materials we used for this project:
- Sew 2 Above-the-Shoulder Straps to the Dress
Use elastic lace to sew two straps – one above each shoulder, on the strapless dress. You can check out this short instruction video for tips on how to sew the over-the-shoulder lace straps.
In the pictures below, you can see two white lace over-the-shoulder straps sewed on a pink strapless dress. The pink dress is lined, so you can sew the straps on the lining on the reverse side of the dress. This way there will be no visible stitches. If you are using a lined dress, I strongly suggest sewing the straps on the lining.
- Pin 4 More Straps
Once you have the two over-the-shoulder straps sewed on the dress, sew four more straps – two on each side. Each strap should be positioned to the left (on the outer side) of its preceding strap. The first two over-the-shoulder straps you have should be the inner straps.
Start by using pins to determine the length and the position of the straps. Then, pin each of straps to the next. This will help you get an idea of how the sleeve (made from the three straps) will look like. Try on the dress to make sure that the length and position of the straps look good.
- Sew the Straps
Once you have the pins in place, cut any excess lace and start sewing. Use a thread that matches the color of the lace. To sew the straps on the dress, you can make a loop around the ends of the lace to keep it from unravelling. To sew the straps to each other, use long stitches and do not pull the thread – the idea is to hold the three straps together, but the stitches should be longer and looser. If it looks messy, do not worry – I thought that everything looked very messy and precarious but when I finished the project everything looked great. Check regularly the position of the pins and keep them in place throughout the project. Try the dress on several times to make sure that you still like the look.
I did all the sewing without a sewing machine. Even though I sewed everything by hand, it only took an hour to complete.