Wednesday, 30 May 2012

Skirt from dress, aka the easiest ever skirt to make

Hi! Here's a quick before and after project. Perfect, if you like me, fall for the print of a too large, too shapeless thrifted dress. It makes a perfect summer skirt for days spent lazing on the lawn.

For this you will need:
  • A dress, or long skirt, a few sizes too large
  • Scissors
  • Needle and thread, or sewing machine (totally can be done by hand, as most of the stitches already exist)
  • Elastic band
  • A sun-worshiping dance or two to make sure you have nice weather to enjoy it

Decide how long you want your new skirt to be, add the cm/inches for your elastic band, plus maybe 1 cm for a hem.  I wanted a sliiiight paper bag skirt effect, so I also added 1 cm for above the elastic band.

Measure from below, to keep the hem the dress already has, and cut. I find the easiest way to get it straight is to fold the fabric over, and if it looks straight, cut.

If your material frays and you want your skirt to last, it might be a good idea to zig zag the hem. I felt half-bothered, so did it a bit half-heartedly. 

Go around the skirt and fold your waistband+hem inwards. Measure here and there to make sure it's even. Pin in place.

Sew. Now, if you, like me, want your skirt slightly paper bag-y, you need to sew two lines, between which your elastic band will be, leaving a little fabric above the top line. If you don't, then one line is fine.

Whichever you do, make sure to measure that your elastic band will fit.

Cut a little hole in the inner layer of the folded down fabric.

Measure your elastic band. You want it to sit tight, so don't go after your waist measurement, wrap it around your waist, tighten to the point that feels good, and cut, leaving a cm or two to sew the ends together.

Pull your elastic band through the "trench" you have sewn, sew the ends together and...all done!

Saturday, 19 May 2012

Nail polish wedge sandals

Nail polish. Which girl doesn't love it? But here’s a problem. How does anybody ever use up a whole bottle? If I try I get tired of the color, and if I don’t try, I feel bad about throwing it away (it not being so great for the environment and all).

In parallel, colorful heels and wedges this season have been capturing my attention. But let's face it, if I could splurge hundreds of pounds on a pair of shoes just because I like the color, I would hardly be writing this blog (see first post).

And as it sometimes does, a solution to both problems appeared... Painting old/second hand wedge heels with left-over nail polish. After all, nail polish is how the red Louboutin sole was born.

Soo...the inspiration:

..and how to DIY it:

You will need:
  • Old or second hand wedges with a plastic wedge. Cork would probably work too.
  • Nail polish, white for a base and a color of your choice
  • Tape to protect the rest of the shoe, I found brown packaging tape to work fine
  • Some cardboard/newspaper to protect surfaces from nail polish

Work in a well-ventilated area.

Tape around the heel.

Paint the heel with white nail polish. Depending on how dark your heel is, paint 2-3 coats. I did 2 coats. Leave to dry for at least a couple of hours, overnight if you have the patience. :)

Next, paint the heel with the color of your choice. Two coats should do it. Leave to dry overnight before you remove the tape, to ensure an even line on the finished shoe.

Taa-daah! Easy, no?



Whoever is reading this, I’m so happy that you are, because I’m really excited about this blog, it’s going to be awesome.

Instead of launching into a full story introduction, there’s only one thing you need to know to get the gist of the content to come: I love upcycling discarded items! I.e. browsing charity shops, Ebay, my own wardrobe etc for things that can be refashioned for something new, fresh and fun. Giving it a second life.

So in short, this is a blog about upcycling/recycling/second hand/turning trash into treasures.

Pop in later today for the first ‘proper’ post!