Tag Archives: Wardrobe Refashion

Fantastic week!!

playing strip poker

playing strip poker at the quilt retreat

Two weeks ago, I went to a weekend quilt retreat just around the corner from my little red house in Bethel. I had a great time sewing, playing games, taking photos, and shooting people with a water gun. We played strip poker, which is NOT what you think! Strips of fabric, you goof! And it’s super fun and easy. We had 3 die, labeled L, R, C, and with a dot. You start with three strips, and roll 3 die. Rolling dots means you get to keep your strips, an L or an R mean you have to hand a strip left or right, and C means the strip goes in the center and is out of play. The die move around the table to the sound of groans and gleeful laughter as people lose or gain strips of fabric until only one person is left with a pile of strips. The first time I just watched, convinced I didn’t need any more fabric and it would be just as fun to watch. Wrong! It’s way more fun to play! Whether I needed the fabric or not-and I won the second game!
Alison (in the yellow and orange blouse) and Barb (not in the photo) organized the weekend, with lots of good food, some squirt guns, fabric and tool drawings, and lots of time to sew on your own project. I’ll take pictures of what I worked on tomorrow; sorry, I keep forgetting to do that!
The main thing is, the weekend made me realize how depressed I’d been, and it knocked me out of my depression. Or the depression out of me… something anyway! I got my mojo back and started enjoying life again! Last weekend I was supposed to go to a recycled clothing class, but it didn’t go, so I spent the weekend getting some projects finished up. Now I have a new hat for the Palmer fair, two very late birthday presents packed up and shipped out, and started two challenge projects!

Becky is moving to Bethel! Click on the picture to see more photos of Becky.

It also made me realize that it was time for a new puppy. I still really miss Harpo. I miss her company and coming home at lunch time to let her out and snuggling with her when I can’t sleep.

So I put the word out, and Becky is moving to Bethel as soon as she is spayed! Becky is six months old, and almost as big as Harpo was. She’s a little stockier than Harpo, and a little shorter, so I think Harpo’s snowsuits will fit her. Becky is a show dog, but she grew too much to show well in Alaska, so her owner wanted to find a new home for her. And I am the lucky duck to get her!

My friend Roxanne, from Holy Dog Pet Boarding, where I used to take Harpo for daycare in Fairbanks, put me in touch with Becky’s owner, Linda Cooper-Cunningham. After a longish, fun conversation with Linda last night, we ended with her agreeing to ship Becky to me in Bethel. Linda is taking her to the vet in Palmer, to get her spayed, and a rabies shot and health certificate. Becky has been crated at night, so she’s used to it, she’s also had some obedience training, and she’s housebroken. So some angel is looking out for me and realizes that I am a terrible dog trainer! Not that Harpo was a bad girl, but she could have used a couple of sessions with Miss Manners. I tend to spoil my dogs rotten…

As if that wasn’t enough… I bought two shelving units from the University surplus sale a couple weeks ago, and Ron, our maintenance man, had time to deliver them today. Both units needed to be trimmed to get into the house, so Ron trimmed the tops and reinserted the top shelves so I could get them into the house. Then he brings me to his house and fills a cooler full of silver salmon for me! I spent the evening cutting up and wrapping fish for the freezer, and enjoyed a fresh salmon steak for dinner.

So can ya beat that for the week from heaven!? Got my mojo back, I’ve had a great time, gotten stuff done, I have a pile of salmon, new shelves, AND a new dog! Can life get any better??!


Glitter Not Gold

Glitter Not Gold

I just visited a new-to-me blog, Glitter Not Gold. Four Irish women have gotten together to write about “...their love of all things pretty, girly and generally glittery. The four of us have different passions in life including make-up, arts, crafts, baking, drawing, sewing – to name a few. This blog is going to be an outlet for us to show you our obsessions, projects as well as a broad snapshot of the things we enjoy“.

The post I particularly want to highlight is this one: the Seamless Pledge; wherein these women won’t be purchasing new clothes, but will buy secondhand and make their own. Similar to the Wardrobe Refashion pledge I took several years back. I haven’t poked around a whole lot yet, but I did like the Great Gatsby dress that Lany made. So go take a look! They look like a fun group! And they’re Irish-what could be better??

Oh, and p.s., Wardrobe Refashion has morphed into Handmaker’s Factory.

Tanana Valley State Fair 2008

Well the fair has started! and now it’s over. I’ll be picking my entries up this afternoon. Rain, rain, rain-it rained every day at the fair. Didn’t seem to keep people away though. I didn’t spend as much time at the fair as I usually do, because I was busier at work than usual-Skip’s going to Russia to do some field work, and I was helping him get ready, so I couldn’t leave early to go visit the fair. I must admit though, that the fair is boring. It’s the same old thing, year after year. I know exactly where a booth will be, how the fair is laid out, and what I will see before I ever get there. It hasn’t changed in the twenty years I’ve lived in Fairbanks. There is a certain comfort level in the sameness… but I pass over stuff that I might spend more time looking at, if it was unexpected.

refashioned sweatshirt

I have five entries. The sweatshirt is my sister’s; she sent me the materials and sweatshirt to refashion about a year ago. My sewing table is a huge mess, and that’s my excuse for not starting it sooner. She very kindly did not bug me about it. I’m really pleased with it; I would like to make one for myself now. It got a second, with a very nice review from the judge.

cell phone holder
The cell phone bag is a purchased felted bag that I embroidered with my own design, using silk ribbon. It placed second. More

Dragonfly quilt

Dragonfly quilt

And this little wall hanging is a small paper pieced crazy quilt square, set into a black background. It was a birthday gift for a friend last fall, and she was gracious enough to let me borrow it back and enter it in the fair. Happily this entry placed first and was also class champion.

The outside lid

Of course I put my sewing basket in the recycling section. I was really disappointed to only get a second with it, but apparently considerable weight is given to re-purposing an item, rather than just refurbishing something. The first place entry (which I searched long and hard to find) was an old gallon tea jar with a spout, turned into a planter; pretty much no work at all. Live and learn! More

Needle felted jeans
The jeans are my practice project from a felting class I took at A Weaver’s Yarn. Unfortunately I’ve gained a few pounds since making them and they’re not currently wearable. But they did place first in their class, so I have more incentive to lose five pounds. I really enjoyed doing the felting and dressing up the pants, and I’ll be felting on more garments and maybe even a wall hanging or ?? More

Wardrobe Refashion pledge

Wardrobe Refashion

I signed up for Wardrobe Refashion again. So here’s my pledge:

I, Edie, pledge that I shall abstain from the purchase of “new” manufactured items of clothing, for the period of 6 months. I pledge that I shall refashion, renovate, recycle preloved items for myself with my own hands in fabric, yarn or other medium for the term of my contract. I pledge that I will share the love and post a photo of my refashioned, renovated, recycled, crafted or created item of clothing on the Wardrobe Refashion blog, so that others may share the joy that thy thriftiness brings!

I find abstaining from buying new clothes wonderfully easy, unlike some of the fashionistas out there, because I hate clothing stores (borrring!!). Shopping for thrift store finds is more fun than buying new, but I find that I do most of my shopping at the transfer station. That’s getting harder and harder to do, as more people discover the treasure trove, and I have less time to check out the recycle area. But, lucky me, over the last year or so I’ve collected plenty of pre-loved items. And yes, I’ll be hitting some thrift stores in Ireland, and will be coming home with a (hopefully) small selection of awesome Irishness!

See my previous projects.

And some inspiration: Unique clothes and retail store ideas.

Homework – better than you think!


Yeah, it’s not as boring as you think – I’m sharing some of my Google Reader links today!

First off, is A Creative Journal. I’ve kept a journal since I was in the fifth grade (okay, only for a few months in the fifth grade! I really started, um, in my twenties, I think). And I like to write (not that you can tell from some of my blog entries – holey cow, are some of those babies are DRY!). So reading A Creative Journal is supposed to encourage me to write more often, write more deeply, and do more self-examination. It’s not working, but I still enjoy reading Heather’s entries, which include writing prompts, links to other journaling blogs, images for journaling, and a whole slew of ideas for self-examination.

Choice #2 is Independent Fashion Label, is “An independent Irish fashion label with an eco flavour“. She takes old clothes, rips ’em apart, and makes some pretty fabulous outfits from her bits and pieces. Her clothes are far too sophisticated and lacy for me to wear, but I keep hoping that some of her design sense will rub off on me and I’ll make THE most fantastic hat someday!

Of course I’ve gotta have a crazy quilting blog in here, so I chose Wind from the East. Hideko lives in Japan, and writes in Japanese and English (I wish that I could write in two languages!). She does exquisite needlework and embellishment on her blocks.

Well, I tried to get out of putting this one on my list, but I just can’t resist adding Shai Coggins’ blog, mostly because she’s running a blog community project, 52 Weeks of Blog Community, which is about building a community of bloggers. Shai also posts the weekly Web Wednesday, where she will “highlight anything and everything about the web“. She’s cheerful and engaging, and has some pretty darned good links. Oh, and she posts the occasional recipe too!

And the dog photo? I was at the puppy park with telephoto lens and camera, and this post needed a photo. Boy, a black dog is hard to photograph on white snow! Next time I’m getting a brown dog!

New jeans!

Needle felted jeans Needle felted jeans

Okay, they’re not new jeans, but they’re refurbished. I took a needlefelting class in December at A Weaver’s Yarn, and this was my class project. I was surprised at how easy it was! And at the wide range of fibers that can be needlefelted – basically anything. I used colored roving and several different yarns on the jeans. The big flower with the yellow center covers up a hole in my knee (I was running, tripped – you know the rest!), and a flower has to have a stem and leaves, doesn’t it? I used a piece of iron-on knit interfacing on the back to hold the fibers onto the jeans; I could have wet felted them too, but the sparkly yarn is (obviously!) not wool, so I thought the interfacing would be more secure.

I’m looking forward to making some needlefelted embellishments now, using the yarn I’ve been stacking up for crazy quilting embellishing. And nuno felting might be in my future too; I can see a hat…

Refashion Inspiration

Refashion inspiration Refashion inspiration Refashion inspiration

Some Wardrobe Refashion inspiration from Urban Outfitters (first two images), and Free People Clothing.

All I need is more space and some free time, and I too could have some cute new blouses like these!
The enlarged images (in case the catalog pics go away!): onetwothree

Find more inspiration at BurdaStyle and Wardrobe Refashion!

My fashion guru’s comments:

Left: Many people think that having a straight line along the edge of their shirts is less unflattering to their contours than having a shape built in. NO. If you go with number one, curve it in along your NATURAL WAIST. Remember natural waist? That is more flattering. I don’t think ruffles or ruffly lace look good on adult women. It makes me think of women as children or like the Stepford wives. That said, in this particular case the ruffle is an interesting touch. And no animal fabrics – at least in my opinion; more plaid, patterns in complimentary colors but contrasting patterns!

Center: If you make this one, make sure the skirt fabric won’t stick to your pants, so preferably a weighty no cotton choice. The T-shirt underneath should be soemwhat fitted or it will detract from the ensemble.

Right: Great choice too. Great embelishment opportunity. I like using an upholstery fabric for the textured area shown across the back. Woven fabric will fall away from your body better than thin cotton, choose wisely.

try this one?

She also suggested this shirt – I’ll have to try one on first though, as in the past this style made me look preggers.