The Refashioners 2018

embroidered ogden cami with silk trouser upcycle

Today I’m taking part in The Refashioners 2018 hosted by Portia at Makery as part of the blogger line up. This year’s challenge takes a slightly different format to previous years with no limitation on the garments you use for your refashion, just that they are unused or second-hand and are repurposed to create a a look ‘inspired by’ ….something or someone. A broad brief like that is hopefully going to allow for some of the most versatile and inspiring entries to date, but it can be challenging to focus with that much freedom.

I decided to let my second hand garments lead the way – so scoured my local charity shops and picked up the best pieces. For me those are the ones in good quality fabrics and nice colours which, in the days where charity shops are filled with discarded cheap fast fashion, are increasingly hard to find. In the end I mainly found men’s shirts in silk and cotton lawn. I then turned to Pinterest where I found some beautiful pieces by a designer called Mara Hoffman that I used as my starting inspiration (my board is here).

Beautiful as those clothes (and models!) are I very much wanted to adapt the inspiration to suit what I would wear (crop tops weren’t even on my radar in my teen years and they sure as something aren’t now), to allow for the necessary compromises that come with refashioning and allow for my own creative input (as beautiful as that embroidery design was as an illustrator I didn’t just want to copy it).

So the long sleeve silk shirt became and pair of cropped length, tapered elastic waisted trousers. If there had been more fabric I’d have liked to add a tie, but as it was I used almost every scrap to get trousers out of the shirt. The legs are pieced together out of necessity – I did this in different places and at different angles on every leg and much to my surprise liked the finished look.DSC_1969

The short sleeved white line shirt became an Ogden Cami (pattern by True Bias) , with a few extra seam details, which I embroidered with a freestyle abstract design using threads rescued from my late grandmother’s attic.embroidered linen ogden cami

I also had to add a tiny bit of embroidery to the back to cover holes that I made when I unpicked the chest pocket.

The other green (cotton) shirt also became an Ogden Cami to create a faux jumpsuit sort of look – though of course that is only so successful because it’s almost impossible to get two secondhand shirts the same colour. This time I left the original placket as a feature on the back of the top but swapped the buttons as the original ones were pretty uninspiring.ogden cami and silk trousers from men's shirts refashion

Like last year I’ve also made some children’s wear refashions which i’ll be sharing on wednesday, but be sure to watch the whole line up at the Makery for lots more refashioning inspiration.

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20 thoughts on “The Refashioners 2018

  1. Wow wow wow! To squeeze pants out of a shirt is almost unimaginable to me! What an awesome job.

    And that embroidered shirt! Absolutely a star in all of this! I’m in love! ❤️

  2. Love the refashions, you are so creative! But I am so happy to have finally found someone with the same name as my daughter! Keep inspiring!

  3. These are all such lovely garments!! I love the rich colours and the embroidery – and am also a Mara Hoffman fan. I can’t believe you got trousers out a shirt, that must have been some serious cutting & stitching skills!

  4. Marvellous! I do like your style and as usual you’ve managed something very creative but still very wearable. Colour me inspired 🙂

  5. Lovely makes! I’d love to see a pic of your embroidery (darning). I have a similar problem on a dress front bodice – So this idea might save the day!

    1. I think you can just see it if you enlarge the photo of the back view. I didn’t try and do it invisibly just a small pink triangle to cover the hole and then two more to make it look intentional!

  6. Oh wow, from a distance I assumed the embroidery was printing, but I love the texture and depth of the design in thread even more!

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