Even if you are a beginning sewer, there are a couple of easy ways to make a halter neck dress to wear to summer barbecues and parties---one of which starts with an existing piece of clothing and another that is made entirely from scratch. When making a halter neck dress, however, be sure to choose a fabric that will drape nicely and that will be cool without being see-through because wearing a slip isn't very practical with a halter neck.
Top Into Dress
Use an existing halter neck top to create a halter neck dress. Find an appropriately matching fabric for the top, and determine what kind of skirt you want. For a straighter skirt, cut the halter top just below the bust and sew the skirt to the top at this point. For a fuller, more flouncy skirt, gather the skirt at the bottom of the halter neck top. If you have trouble getting the dress on and off after adding the skirt, cut a slit down the back of the top through to the skirt, and add a thin zipper.
For this method, choose a flowing, draping fabric. Sew a basic fabric tube that will fit snugly over the top of your bust and flow down to the length that you want. Fold a length of the same kind of fabric, a contrasting fabric or sturdy matching ribbon into a V. Attach the center part of the long V to the center of the top of the bust---this will be the halter that goes around your neck. If you have chosen a non-stretchy fabric, you'll need to add a zipper to the back of the dress to ensure that you can get the dress on and off and still have a snug fit at the bust.
- "Chic & Simple Sewing: Skirts, Dresses, Tops and Jackets for the Modern Seamstress;" Christine Haynes; 2009