Upcycle Tag

24 Nov Wearing the Pants

Hubby was about to give his pants away. He had absolutely no idea that plaid pants are quite in vogue. Even his …. Have you ever taken apart a pair of men’s pants?  Releasing a single seam gets you nowhere. It was maddening to discover interfacing, horsehair (or a similar product) AND muslin layered between the fashion fabric and the lining to prevent stretching. The front pockets  are as deep as the Pacific Ocean and neatly sewn into the fly, waistband and side seam. At times I found taking the pants apart was more difficult that putting them back together.        The good...

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03 Jul Long Weight Over!

I was so inspired by Shams’ (Communing with Fabric) post regarding her impressive weight loss that I decided to tackle the pesky 13 extra pounds I’ve been lugging around for the last ten years. I hopped on board the same program as Shams (Eat to Live) since I already owned the book and believed the program promoted a healthy lifestyle.  Three weeks later I’ve made enough progress (about 7 pounds) to fit into several of my old, too-tight clothes! They have been hanging in my closet for years just waiting to see the light of day again and at last it’s...

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25 Nov Formal Desperation

There’s a first time for everything, and I let a formal event on November 23rd sneak up on me, in that I had nothing to wear. I planned on wearing my daughter’s dress but waited until Thanksgiving night to try it on and it wasn’t a pretty picture. Frantically rummaging through every closet in the house, I stumbled upon this sequined dress I bought in 1994. I’ve been hoping to shrink back into it, but desperate times call for desperate measures and out came the scissors and a roll of Steam-a-Seam. I cut nine inches off of the dress and placed Steam-a-Seam...

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07 Aug Honor Thy Mother-in-Law

For some reason my 89-year-old mother-in-law and I both own the same shirt.She loves her shirt and wears it throughout the summer. I certainly don’t want my mother-in-law to think I am copying her, so I decided to refashion my shirt.   Though the cotton is extremely lightweight, I enjoy sleeveless tops during the hot sticky summer days and immediately cut off the sleeves. In retrospect short sleeves would have worked just as well, and the project would have been much easier. My last project, the orange peplum blouse, is one of my best fitting garments and inspired me to simulate a peplum.  By...

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22 Jul Let’s Hang On To What We’ve Got!

“ Mom, it’s time for you to quit wearing this strapless top.” Is this a preview of what’s to come? “Mom, this house is more than you can handle. Let’s look at a retirement community.” “Mom, it’s time to turn over the car keys.” “Mom, we’re afraid you are going to hurt yourself with that sewing machine.” ………………… I’ll quit wearing the strapless top, but I’m not giving it away.  It’s an expensive Sarah Campbell top made of a beautiful cotton almost as nice as Grandmother’s Sheet, and I love it. I recognize there comes a time when one has to take a long hard look...

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07 Jul One $ Wonder(ful)

My mother gave me this dress some time ago. She bought it for $1.00 at a thrift store and thought the dress might look cute if I hemmed it. O k a y y y y y  … I thought it had potential, but a little hem seemed like just the beginning, or perhaps the grand finale. The fit was acceptable in bust but was too big elsewhere. After releasing a few stitches of the bust lining, I was able to adjust the bodice. Following the stitching lines I removed two inches from the upper bodice through the hips. I then tapered the lower...

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21 Jun Carpe Diem

Carpe Diem does not mean ‘fish of the day' As I relaxed under the umbrella taking in the surrounding beach activities, the wind blew my current issue of InStyle magazine to a page of celebrities wearing skinny floral pants and jeans. In particular, the pants on the right reminded me of a pair of pants I had packed for this week at the beach …… only I bought them in 2006…  and they weren’t skinny legs… and they were stretched out from 6 years of constant wear…. The gang was out fishing leaving me free to get my sewing machine out of the...

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