I’ve decided to take a short break from making new garments and try to tackle the huge pile I have for alterations and repairs.
Today’s consumerist society has us believe that it’s perfectly acceptable to dispose of our wardrobes every season and replace them with the high street’s dictated ‘trends’. Investing in a few staple longevity garments is essential, but why should we willingly part with our hard-earned cash every time the wind changes?
Don’t get me wrong, if something is gathering dust for any longer than six months and you’re really not going to wear it, it’s probably time to take it to a charity shop. However, if you’ve been holding on to a quality or sentimental garment, but you’re not wearing it because it doesn’t quite fit or needs repairing, why not consider giving it a new lease of life?
Remember Marge’s class struggle? She found a bargain quality suit and wore the hell out of it, adjusting it for variation:
Remember the vintage dress I got excited about in the summer?
Sadly I discovered it didn’t fit too well up top. So, I decided to turn it into a skirt! Here’s what I did:
- Cut a strip of thick elastic about 10cm smaller than my waist
- Stitched it together securely to form the waistband, reinforcing the seam
- Marked four equidistant points around the waistband with pins
- Cut the skirt part off the dress and marked four equidistant points with pins
- Matched up the pins and prepared to stitch
The next part was a little tricky. I changed my machine setting to a small zigzag stitch and sewed a few stitches at the first pin point to begin. I then stretched out the elastic to the next pin point, matched the width of the skirt fabric, fed the fabric through the machine and stitched close to the bottom of the waistband.
When released, the elastic shrinks back to normal size and the skirt fabric forms a nice gather. I repeated this step between all pin points, and that’s all there was to it.
The news of my sewing skills is travelling fast, and my friends are catching on that I can help them out with adjustments. Here’s one I did for the lovely Nic, who decided that this gorgeous floor length dress wasn’t for her.
Has anyone else made any wardrobe transformations? I’d love to see your ideas.
My to do list:
- Sew the pocket back on a pair of jeans and tighten the legs
- Repair and revamp a VERY retro vintage dress that I’ve been given
- Replace the zip in a dress
Let’s continue to say no to this throwaway culture!
Until next time,