make do + mend 40s suit refashion
Added Sep 14, 2011
This isn’t so much a straight-up sewing project, but I felt it would appeal to a few of you (hopefully!!)! I recently was asked to participate in a collective refashioning project by Portia of the Miss P blog . The premise was to take a mystery (thrift store) garment she sent me, and rework it. The challenge would be taking something ho-hum and making it into a garment I’d be excited to wear! I was sent a rather dowdy floral suit, several sizes too large. However, having been on a bit of a 1940s “make do and mend” kick lately, I was inspired by the idea of completely refitting the suit and making it into a cute 40s-inspired number. (Note: in the “before” picture below, I added a few clothespins to the suit to get it to fit my dressform a bit better—it was far too big!)
I’ve gone over some of my details in the post I wrote for Portia’s blog here , but a quick break-down:
- refit the jacket completely, including removing the original sleeves, recutting those and sewing them back in. I also eliminated the original pockets and sewed those shut (the placement would have been grossly off when the jacket was refit).
- cut a new neckline that was distinctly inspired by the 40s.
- added some snazzier buttons; two vintage glass ones from my stash.
- added a bow to the neckline I made from what was originally the jacket collar!
- recut the skirt into a shorter a-line style; refit the waistband too.
I love how it came out—definitely am going to be wearing this over the last few weeks of September while I can still get away with it! I’m really inspired now to tackle a few more 40s-inspired “make do and mend” projects. Because as much as I love sewing a dress from start to finish, sometimes it’s just as enjoyable (and challenging!) to rework something with a few well-placed stitches and seams to bring it back to life.
Be sure to stop by my blog !