On our last trip to Hervey Bay, I bought two men’s shirts with the sole intent of chopping them into little pieces. They were from St Vinnies, and from memory cost $6 each. One was a gorgeous Tommy Hilfiger striped chambray number, with lovely contrasting lining on the cuffs, yoke and in the side hems, and lots of other little details that I just loved.


I was sooooo keen to participate in #TheRefashioners2015, a challenge organised by Portia Lawrie at The Makery. The intent is to “highlight how cool, creative and ecologically and ethically sound refashioning old garments actually is.” I have been a refashioner from way back – my year 11 formal dress cost $3 from LifeLine, and my awesome mother turned it into a super cute baby doll dress (Oh so awkward, so skinny, but so sweet! I would have been 15 in this photo). Two years later, I pulled off the sunflowers and yellow chiffon, stitched on a few meters of strung pearls, and wore it to my college ball.

Sunflowers were hot in the early '90s, I swear!
Sunflowers were hot in the early ’90s, I swear!

If you search for #therefashioners2015, the creativity and skills of the refashioners is mind-blowing. What I think is incredible is the huge variety of what’s been created, especially when you consider that the starting point of each and every one was a men’s shirt. There’s a surprising amount of fabric in a man’s shirt, but I decided to play it safe and made something for the smallest member of the household.

Too much talent!
Too much talent!

I originally thought I’d make a dress, but when I saw the detail on the hem of the side seams, I knew I had to make a pair of shorts. A two piece set in the same fabric would be too matchy-matchy, so the playsuit was born. I’m a lazy stitcher, so I reused the button placket as is, and didn’t even bother removing the pocket. The shorts are the Flosstyle Star Shorts Garden option without the ruching, and the bodice and collar came from Simplicity 7566 (1997). I made the collar in two pieces, using the yoke lining, and used the cuff lining to make a contrasting waist band. In hindsight, I think the collar is too big, and I should have added crotch snaps, but gosh it looks cute on 🙂

playsuit collage
So busy!

I love this concept, and think there is another Flosstyle combo that will make a super cute playsuit, but little miss is having a bit of a growth spurt, so I’ll definitely need to go longer in the torso. Better add it to the Stitch List…

What our photo sessions are usually like. 90% trying to get the camera, 10% successful distraction...
What our photo sessions are usually like. 90% trying to get the camera, 10% successfully distracted…

Is anyone else a Refashioner at heart? What have you created?


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