Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Tartan Refashion

I posted this picture yesterday as a teaser of the next piece I would be refashioning. I was able to finish half of the project yesterday, and finished the rest today! And then I had to take photos, make photo collages, and write this post ;) all while my son is bouncing off the walls with the endless energy that only the young possess...good times!
Hotness! What ever shall I do with all that plaid?

So, I found these pants in my last thrifting spree for $2 (half off day). They are a heavy polyester knit that holds its shape really well and at size 20, I had lots of wiggle room to transform these into some pretty cool pieces (even if I do say so myself).

There was a tiny hole in the back seam and the crotch was looking pretty worn. I made one chop across both legs and unpicked the crotch seam.

As you can see, the chop was about 4-5 inches below the crotch. My next step was to open up the waistband and pull out the old elastic.

Then, I tried on the top part inside out and pinned it where I'd need to take it in...this will become a skirt! I sewed up each side as well as where I'd pinned the now open crotch.

However, when I turned it right side out, the seam up the front and back of the skirt left the pattern lining up a little crooked, so I ended up unpicking the entire waistband to remove it. Next, I unpicked the front and back seams, repinned them so that the seams would look cleaner, and resewed everything up, finishing the raw edges with a zigzag stitch.

Finally, I shortened the waistband, inserted elastic to fit my waist and reattached it to my skirt. I also hemmed this skirt using a blind hem stitch :). Second time doing it and I'm so stoked that I'm keeping my resolution of learning more techniques!

Here's how my skirt turned out:

I will wear this most often, pretty casually. In spring I'll throw on flats and a jacket, but for now, I'll be wearing this with fleece-lined tights, boots and a cozy sweater. Another option is this white button-down that I refashioned a couple of years back. Its a copycat of Charity Shop Chic's copycat of a top Sarah Jessica Parker wore on Sex In The City. Hop on over here to see how she did it (she's such an amazing seamstress/refashioner!!! Can you tell I'm a big fan?). I made mine with the neckline a little higher so that I didn't necessarily have to wear a cami under it. I posted briefly about it on Refashion Co-op here.
Need to do a couple of alterations on this as I've since lost some chest post-baby and it gapes at the neckline :).

Love it! Okay, for the next piece, I took the two legs and turned one inside out. I put the right side out leg inside the other and sewed around the raw edges, right sides together. Ha, do you understand that? Should have taken a pic ;). Anywho, this left me with a long tube once I turned everything right side out. The pattern didn't line up, but I'm not too worried about that as this section will not show. I grabbed the scrap section of waistband that I'd previously removed as well as a piece from a pair of suspenders that I thrifted for the use of the silk shoulder bands (which, btw, remain unused in my tin of scraps...gotta get on that!).

I folded the waistband scrap and topstitched along each side to create a band that I then looped through the suspender piece and sewed in place close to the seam previously created.

Once that was complete, I started rifling through my buttons trying to decide what color, size, and style would look best. I decided to choose a pair that matched the hardware on the suspenders and a little smaller because I didn't want the buttons to overpower the other details.

After sewing the buttons in place (I gauged where they would be placed by wrapping this around my neck and pinning where I would want them) my new cowl scarf was complete! I adore it with my 'new' navy pea coat that I found this winter for $4. The material is actually great because it holds its shape and I can arrange it just so and it stays that way :). I can just pull this right over my head, throw on my coat and be ready to go...no need for fiddling with little buttons.

Again, love this! It's a little bit preppy with the navy pea coat, but I can't wait to pair it with my black faux leather jacket once the true thaw begins around here for an edgier look. And guess what!? I still have some of these pants left in the scraps from the skirt, but also from the scarf because it was a bit long and I shortened it by at least 8-9 inches (and that doesn't include the hem of the one leg!) Soooo, I'll have one more piece out of this yet! But for now, I'm taking a break from all of the tartan print to do a few alterations on that white top.

Here's one last look at the before and afters!

Hope you like this one...or two. I sure do :).



  1. You have done two great refshions. I gather this material is stretch fabric as you don't mention a zipper? Anyone who works with stripes gets a gold star in my book. Oh, and good on you for doing a blind hem. I must put that along with an exposed zipper on my bucket list of things to try.

    From Karen at @ Facebook group Bowerbirds Journal

    1. Yes, Karen, it has a little bit of stretch...though, I may still add a zipper to get a better fit on the waist. Hmm, maybe an exposed zipper in black? :) Love exposed zippers and I attempted it once on a sheer black top that I need to do some fixes on as it came out a tad wonky. The blind hem stitch is actually pretty easy! Though, I think if you were working with any type of silky/slippery fabric it would be a major pain in the rear. As always, appreciate you taking the time to comment :)