I found a dress at Goodwill with a fabric design I liked. It was lightweight rayon with colors I like, the whole bit. Unfortunately, somewhere between the camera and the computer, the "before" picture got lost. It was a sleeveless *long* dress with a little shaping in the body, and straight from the mid-section on down, with slits that were probably meant to go to about just below the lowest part of the hip. Given that I'm 5'1, the dress was past floor-length on me. And the top just barely fits - it's a tiny bit more snug than I usually like. Overall, the dress was pretty shapeless and dumpy on me, and far too long.
I cut off the bottom 28" and put an elastic waist on it (yeah, it's really 28" - I tend to wear my skirts really high up at my natural waist). I decided to leave the slits for the moment, and see how much I wanted to sew closed on them.
Then I decided I like the way my bike shorts look underneath them. The slits are high enough, and the bike shorts go low enough, that it looks purposeful rather than "peekaboo". And can always go back and sew the slits closed later if I want.
So I have the top leftover. As I said, I can wear it, but it's a bit snug. The bottom of it is *just* above where I'd want a top to end, so between finishing the edge and wanting it to look right over my stomach, I'll need to add something. I'd also like to increase the girth of it a bit. I don't know if I want to add fabric or if I want to open it up and maybe put really lightweight frogs or toggles in order to wear it over something. I may also have to enlarge the armholes a little, though I'm not looking forward to that. The photo is a little dark, but other than that, the colors seem to be pretty true on this photo. Oh, and there's spaghetti-style ties in the back, about the bottom of my rib cage.