Lightweight, breezy and great on all body types, the relaxed style of a kimono cardigan is perfect for many warm weather engagements. Also extremely versatile, it can be paired with both sophisticated and festival-friendly ensembles. You can quickly create your own long, flowing kimono cardigan using an old thrift-store dress.

kimono cardigan layered over jeans

Beth Huntington

Things You'll Need

Start with a long, lightweight, flowing thrift-store dress.

before photo of old thrift-store dress

Beth Huntington

Remove the shoulder pads from the dress with a seam ripper.

remove shoulder pads

Beth Huntington

Use a sharp pair of scissors to cut off the sleeves as close to the existing seam as possible.

remove sleeves

Beth Huntington

Most sheer dresses with have enclosed seams, which means you can cut close to the seam and the edge will still be finished. In this case, you won’t have to worry about the edge fraying. If your dress doesn’t have enclosed seams, then you’ll want to finish your newly cut armhole edges by folding each over twice by 1/4 inch and stitching the hem.

sleeve finish

Beth Huntington

Cut directly up the front center of the dress, from the bottom all the way to the top.

cut center of dress

Beth Huntington

If your dress has a lining, cut up the front center of the lining as well.

cut center of lining

Beth Huntington

Press the center raw edges of the lining and the dress over twice, by 1/4 inch, toward the wrong side of the fabric. Pin to hold in place.

fold and press raw edges

Beth Huntington

Use a sewing machine with an 11/80 needle to sew the pressed edges. Be sure to remove the pins as you sew.

sew the pressed edges

Beth Huntington

To keep the lining and the dress together, hand tack the lining to the dress at the top of the new opening with a few hand stitches.

hand tack the lining to the dress

Beth Huntington

Layer your new kimono cardigan over your favorite jeans for a fun, breezy look, no matter where you’re going.

kimono cardigan layered over jeans

Beth Huntington

kimono cardigan layered over jeans

Beth Huntington

kimono cardigan layered over jeans

Beth Huntington