Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Wardrobe refashion frenzy - converting skirts to tops Part 2

Stained Skirt to Vest Top 

I managed to get a big red stain on this skirt - no idea how, it may have been red wine or it could just as easily have been cherry juices from my jam making or even beetroot juice, anyway the end result was one ruined skirt - and a hand made skirt in some lovely old retro fabric at that.  Well there was no way I was going to take that lying down, so out came the scissors and another refashion was born.

First I removed the waistband and put it to one side.  As this skirt is made from scraps and I don't have any more of the material around, every square inch is required.

For the armholes I copied the curve from another pattern onto some publicity paper.

I then pinned the skirt together from the removed waistband along the side seams to the approximate depth of the armholes, drew the curve onto the material and cut through the double thickness of the material.

Once the armholes had been cut out, I unpinned the material, opened it out and pinned a small hem to finish, this was then whizzed into place with straight stitches on the sewing machine.

As the neck line front and back was now a raw edge, and with no material to spare I used a couple of rectangles of contrasting cotton to create a neck piece into which I could tuck the raw edges and give a nice finish to make the top look like a top rather than a skirt with two holes cut in it.

To start, I pinned the contrast material to the necklines, right sides to right sides.  The skirt material has some horizontal pattern lines so I just used one of those as the base line to follow.

Once pinned in place I basted the raw edges together.

Then with the use of the hot iron, I folded in the raw edges at the sides then tucked under to create a hem across the front and back to create a block of contrast material that I could then topstitch in place, but not until I had the straps in place.

To create the straps, I unpicked the old waistband, then refolded the raw edges in, fixed in place with the hot iron, and ran a line of topstitching down the length.

I then pushed the end of the straps into the sides of the contrast material at the back, then put on the top to find the right length for the straps.

I marked the correct length with a pin, and evened them up once I had removed the top, so that both straps were an identical length.

Here's the clever bit - remember that pin, don't remove it, just reposition it so that both straps are at the correct equal length, snip the remainder of the strap away leaving a tail just a couple of centimetre long, then feed the tail into the contrast border until you hit the pin, then secure the tail inside the border with a pin until time to stitch.  Neat and easy, much easier than trying to measure the straps once they are looped from front to back.

With the straps in place, I topstitched all the way around the contrast material in straight stitch, reversing over the places where the straps feed into the front and back corners.

Now with the main body of the top finished I just had to do something about the stain on the front.  Using the bits of armhole I had cut out, I fashioned a pocket, with a top band from the same contrast material.  I stitched the band, right sides together at the top of the pocket, then folded a hem in much the same way as for the necklines.

I just zig-zag stitched around the raw edge of the pocket, then pinned it in position, and folded the raw edge in, then top stitched the pocket into place.

Not a very good photo I know, but it is the finished article, ready to wear.

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