Tag Archives: Refashion

Decoupage casualty – refashioned trousers

1 Nov

They do say on the bottle of Shimmer-effect mod-podge I was using for decoupage, that once it is dry, it doesn’t wash out. Silly me just figured if I got any on the fave pair of trousers I was wearing that day, I would just wash it off while wet.

Except… I didn’t see it till it was too late.

And then discovered what is strangely not mentioned on the bottle: if you spill it on clothing it dries to look like … not putting too fine a point on it, SNOT.

Good thing I like refashioning, right? They really are great trousers. And SNOT dried shimmer-effect mod-podge right over the right knee is just not a good look.

The trousers long before their encounter with Shimmer Effect Mod Podge.

I made the inside yoke of the trousers with some green/grey floral craft fabric left over from a long-ago pair of shorts. The colours work well with the soft khaki green and beigey green. I found some more of the same fabric left over in the back of mum’s quilting fabric drawer. YAY! It has quite clear flower motifs in amongst a vague leafy background. Perfect!

Deciding that one flower might look lovely but a whole lot of them would not only look awesome, but less like I was covering SNOT shimmer-effect mod-podge and more like I had designed it this way, I made 7 flower motifs. I’m pointing to the all-important SNOT shimmer-effect mod podge-covering flower, for the record.

(Just as an explanation, I HATE ironing, hence all the wrinkles :-P)

What I did:

  • ironed bondaweb (well, mum thinks that is the name of it) onto the back of the motifs
  • used my beloved stork-scissors with their narrow sharp point to cut the flowers out
  • played around with placement
  • ironed the motifs on, including the all-important one over the mishap on the right knee
  • hit my mum up for instructions on how to set my machine for appliqué as she does for her quilts
  • asked her for a quick rundown on how to do said appliqué
  • appliquéd the motifs on
This so totally restored my trousers as a useful member of my wardrobe, while making them slightly more casual, I have been wearing them probably more than I used to.
Including the other month when the tide was really really low, and I went out with some friends and people from work to look at the reef in Darwin harbour.

My made June-ish

17 Jul

June is usually the coldest month here, and my warmer clothes are usually just op-shop finds to see me through an average of all of 3 weeks of cold weather. So I didn’t sign up for Me-Made June.

But this June turned out sooooo cold I had to dig out some of my southern travel clothes for their extra warmth. One old favourite is this blue velvet skirt. I found the skirt, a straight wrap-around in I think a size 8, (too small for me) in an op-shop in Darwin when I was 19. I made it into this straight skirt that buttons up at the side. (Gorgeous buttons. Mmmm!) The fabric was a tad worn and frayed in places when I found the skirt, and I do secretly love that. It has Character!

It turned out to be the perfect weight for the extra-cold weather. Yes yes, I really was barefoot even though it was freezing 😛 I wore this skirt so much that, especially on days I wore a top I had also made, like this one, I was doing a Me-Made June after all.

One day I will work out how to fit the back of my bodices so they don’t have all that extra fabric in them. I already take some length out of the waist. I have trialled taking some of that excess out of the shoulders/neck, without affecting the armscye. I think it is working. More on that in a later post when I am more confident of what I am doing.

The top is my “wearable muslin” of Sense and Sensibility’s swing era dress pattern, started when I optimistically joined Casey‘s Swing era dress sew-along earlier this year. I ‘fess, I went on holiday in the middle of the sew-along and never started the actual dress The muslin worked out just fine, however, so I finished it off as a top, (practised that crazy shoulder corner seam!) and it soon became a wardrobe favourite. I suspect it is partly to do with the colour (looks lovely on me and goes with everything in my wardrobe), partly the weight of the fabric is so nice (cotton poplin), the style is comfortable (love that back pleat!) and it suits my figure. What more can a girl ask for?

(For the record I have some red, red, red cotton sateen in the cupboard to make the actual dress up.)

Blue rose skirt refashion

3 Jun

Behold my doubtful expression in this “before” skirt refashion photo. It was “Oh dear, I am not sure this is gonna work.” Both the skirt refashion I was planning, and the photograph with the bright outdoors behind me.

And please admire my favourite t-shirt – the only garment that made this skirt seem ok. With every other top I own, the skirt looks dowdy dowdy dowdy. I think it is just the wrong mix of length and flare for my figure. Too wide, or too short. Or something. ARGH! I only have myself to blame. I made the skirt, thinking that length was ok. Glug.

But I LOVE the fabric! Mmmmm.

During a colour and style consultation with Kerryn of Kerryn’s Fabric World, I mentioned the issue with this skirt. Indeed it is an issue I’ve had with other skirts too, but this is extra bad because I love the fabric so much yet it is such a flop style-wise. Kerryn suggested I consider diagonals instead of straight hems, on both tops and skirts because without the definite horizontal line it avoids creating that short, dumpy, chopped-in-half look so easy to get when you are short, like me.

So this skirt refashion is the result of Kerryn’s advice, and of being inspired by all the gorgeous fabrics mum used in this quilt for my sister late last year. I chopped the bottom of the skirt off diagonally, then played around with remains of quilting fabric to add back some of the length I chopped off while still maintaining the diagonal effect.

Below is an example of the process. I laid the remnants out in an arrangement I liked, then used one of the (sadly very few) decorative stitches my machine has, to sew them all together along the edges, one edge of fabric on top, the other under which you can see in the centre and left of the picture below.

The right side of the picture shows a shell-stitch pintuck. Can’t for the life of me remember where I learnt of this embellishment technique – either a stray blog or Australian Stitches magazine, but I love it! The pintucky edge folded over a bit but it looks good anyway. I also did another thing I have long wanted to try – pleats working with the colour of a striped fabric. This fabric was a floral with a stripey-coloured background. So I did the pleats along the stripes. Looks great. I want to do it again some time!

The only fabric used that wasn’t on the quilt was this flower fairy fabric remnant I bought to make a new outfit for my ragdoll, Lilly. I pieced the few tiny triangles together. I can now say I have used every single itty bitty thread of this fabric I had.

I finished the join between skirt and um… skirt peplum? Bottom bit of skirt? Interesting Hem Effect? with a green velvet ruched band. It is created by sewing the gathering thread in zigzags across the ribbon so it goes appealingly wobble when you gather it. No, I didn’t do it myself. I bought it like that from Spotlight. I just recognise the technique from. um. A blog? Australian Stitches mag? Threads mag? Uh yeah. Somewhere. I also added a patch pocket as the skirt needed a little something above the ribbon/diagonal cut to bring the two halves of the skirt together. The patch pocket was my visiting Aunty’s idea. Thanks Aunty!

And… here is the final skirt. And me trying to do some artsy fashion-type shot with my very reluctant fashion photographer mum taking the photo and the doggies insisting on joining the fun.

Last but not least, the skirt in action.

Conclusion? A stunning success!

Original fabric: 1.2m @ $8m = around $10
Invisible Zip $1
Ruched velvet ribbon: $5
Quilting fabric remnants: $10
Total: $26

Sandals: Orthoheel
White blouse: $2 op-shop find
Snoopy shirt (top picture) $5 op-shop find
Dogs: Priceless (RSPCA find, many years ago ;-P)

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