Quick remakes – T and Shirt

I was asked to help with a workshop a youth group was running locally.  The ‘summer camp’ was going to try and combine fashion along with eco-sensibility – by both discussing the negative environmental and social aspects of fast fashion as well as facilitating the attendees to make their own fashion by handing over a fiver and getting them to go to the charity shops and find some clothes that they would wear or upcycle!

I thought I better do some quick sews to show them pieces that can be done with very little sewing and cutting.  I found a shirt and tee in the sewing room box (a lot of unsaleable pieces from the attached charity shop end up here so some have holes some have stains….).  The big T had some small holes and the design was badly faded, the shirt had a stain to the front.

The T

grey tee shirt cut out

The front print on this was faded but was not as noticeable on the wrong side – which I used as the right side,

  • I cut it up and rough cut a tee-shirt shape from the front and back and shortened the tee shirt
  • cut a slight curved arm-scythe. I used one of my own tee’s as a guide.
  • I sewed the shoulder seams together
  • I trimmed the sleeves into as long a rectangle shape, and joined each to a rectangle made from the front and back trim from the bottom of the tee – with the original hems left intact so they became the finished edge of the new sleeve – I gathered the sleeves and inserted them flat
  • and over-locked the sides together and twin needled the neckline and hem.

grey tee after (1)

The hem and neckline were turned over and finished with a twin needle!  The sleeves in this are very dramatic, but its a great tee, and I have since tried another with smaller sleeves.  The sleeves here were made from the 2 rectangles cut from the bottom of the tee-shirt only.

G Star T upcycleG star t upcycle

The shirt

There are a few upcycles around for this style of gypsy shirt, but I wanted to show shirring as I find it so useful, effective and fast.

shirred shirt upcycle to summer top

So for this I cut the shirt above cuff and placket, and around the neckline (which was just under the yoke of the shirt at the back, and over-locked all edges.

I then did 3 lines of shirring…. which equated to one bobbin full!  I later put in some at the hem.

Both took less than an hour each.

The workshop was last week and it was so interesting and so hectic – I did 3 afternoon sessions of about 2.5 hours and it was non-stop.  There were 7 attendees and a great mix of ages and fashion styles, and they were all incredibly enthusiastic.

Few had really sewn before and the nice bit about the making were all were happy with making in general and setting a realistic standard (I think sometimes teaching adults to sew is more difficult as some expect to have a store bought finish and feel defeated when it comes out otherwise.)  Anyway this was just as well as they all seems to have picked up very tricky fashion fabrics at the charity shops.

 

My ‘Anthro’ crochet beach dress

My favourite way to finish sweaters is a crochet edge, one reason is its incredibly quick way to finish, and the second is it gives a sweet hand-made touch – the last one I did was a navy cardigan – I don’t have the before photo but it was a zara long cardigan which was rather jaded looking and languishing on the ‘euro rail’ (reduced rail in charity shop). (I have put a small ‘how to add trim’ or ‘how I do’ here)

I had thought a few times of trying crochet trims on tee-shirts but never did – until this ‘Anthopologie’ number popped up on my pinterest feed the Xanthe dress.

I follow Anthropologie on Pinterest, and I only got to visit the store for the first time in York.  It was interesting but slightly boring, the huge whale made from denim was brilliant, but it was really racks of the same clothes.  I think I have gotten used to charity shops with where everything is different and requires a look, that I sometimes get bored in shops!  I didn’t see this dress when I was there, but it did pop into my feed a week after I came back.  I really loved the fresh look and colours and thought I should try something similar.  So a few days later when I was in a charity shop, I got this jersey skirt and its a perfect colour (although a small bit light).  I cut the waist-band off, cut a ‘vague’ underarm curve to give illusions of sleeves, and then a neckline.

Originally this dress was to be whipped up in no time, and use some left over yarn. I blanket stitched the neck and sleeves and did them first in a mix of single, double crochet and fillet stitch.  but this was not meant to be, I was nearly finished when the weight of the yarn had the dress stretched to mid-calf.  But as I was happy with the dress besides…………I went out and bought the yarn in 4ply, and started all over again.  This time I flew through it as the stitches were worked out.  I pretty much went with similar patterns to the original, I used some fhdc’s here and there, and I am unsure how the braiding was done on the ‘Anthro’ dress, but I did a foundation chain, and threaded it through the white fillet.  I tightened the neckline but I am thinking of making it big again after seeing the photos, it was more boat-necked before hand.

 

There is something so perfect about crochet summer dresses, especially on a warm day, as they are incredibly comfortable to wear.  I don’t really like to sit in sunshine so generally use this sunhat every summer if I sit ‘out the back’.  (when I say every summer, I mean every summer for the past 27 years…… probably my best buy-it-once buy)