Monday, April 2, 2018

A 'Happily Ever After' Recycled Outfit

I really enjoying harvesting the fabric out of used clothing and creating something entirely new.  First, it engages my brain. You need to mentally deconstruct the garment and devise a plan to reuse the parts.  So let's have some fun!

Once upon a time this dress belonged to a 29 year old woman.  She loved it, but alas her body changed and she passed it on to me. "Create something new for your 10 year old granddaughter," she said.
As I looked closer, I saw possibilities!

First, I began to deconstruct the dress.
What if I added a bit of new cotton and lycra knit fabric for the lower front and back of the top? I could use the recycled ruffled black and white print for the upper front and back...then all I would need to do is fill  in that scoop with the new fabric.

 After checking, I realized that there would be enough of this black and white ruffled fabric length to keep the curved seam on the front.

Adding this fabric at the top of the back will fill in that scoop. Now, I have a new back that will eventually support the neck edge of my hoodie that I will be adding.  

 When I cut out the pocket, there was not enough fabric to place it on the fold, so I'll just add a seam down the center.  I wish I had a coverstitch machine to do some decorative stitching. But I have a plan to use one of the decorative stitches on my machine to simulate a coverstitch. 
I will use some vibrant red thread to highlight the seams and no one will ever suspect that it should have been one large pocket instead of two. Stitching in the ditch down the middle of the seam will instantly make 2 pockets.

 Now on to the hood. I'll use more of my black dress fabric for the hood and the hood lining. The bright print will draw the eye to her face, and the red topstitiching will repeat the decorative element on the hood and the pocket together.

Use a bit of turquoise fabric, from the dress band, for the grommet area, and I'll even make the ties from more of the black skirt fabric.

Reuse the knit bias tape by basting it in place first. Then topstitch it on with the machine.
Lastly, add the bottom band on the shirt and 
we    are   done! 

My granddaughter loves it and this story ends with ... her wearing the top "happily ever after."  Oh gosh, I forgot to mention the matching knit pants that I made out of a recycled pair of stretch knit pants of mine. It was pure magic!!!!
Old lady pants to hip-hop-hot body hugging pants
 perfect for a 5th grader.




  1. Very cool! I love that you upcycled!!!

    1. Up-cycling cab be so much fun. It keeps my old brain thinking and creating!

  2. I love hooded shirts! This likes such a fun outfit to wear. My daughter would love it, I'm pretty sure.

    1. Sewing for a pre-teen is very rewarding. Let's just say that when she's happy...I'm happy!

  3. I love so much about this! I cannot believe how old she is getting too! I always love how creative you get and I know how hard it is to sew for a kid that has sensitive skin!

  4. Karly,
    Thanks for your kind words. Is funny, but the first time she tried on the outfit so I could check the fit, she said, "I love how smooth and silky the fabric feels." Yes, for children with sensitive skin we must consider that aspect in our design.

    1. Yes! I can see her loving double brushed poly spandex!


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