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How many times have you stumbled on a gorgeous vintage print, only to find that the garment itself looks like your great grandmother’s muumuu? Summer Phoenix and Ruby Canner, the girls behind Some Odd Rubies vintage clothing store in NYC, have come to the rescue to show you how to revamp a frumpy second-hand find into a fabulous new piece on this segment of The Martha Stewart Show. For this project the girls show you step-by-step how to take a vintage skirt and rework that outdated shape into an adorable and modern silhouette using one of the new Heavy Duty sewing machines from SINGER®. With a few simple steps and quick stitches, you can have a whole new look!

So tell us, do you prefer making projects from scratch or altering second-hand garments into new pieces? Leave your comments here by 9am EST on Monday, January 31st for your chance to win a SINGER® Dress Form! And don’t forget, you only have four days to comment to win a brand new SINGER® sewing machine, a SINGER® Home Essentials™ Expert Finish™ Iron or a SINGER® Home Essentials™ SteamWorks™ Pro Iron! Winners of all of the how-to Martha Stewart video series will be posted Feb. 1st on the BurdaStyle blog and in our newsletter, so leave your comment on the other posts for your chance to win!


SINGER® is sewing made easy™. To learn more about SINGER sewing machines and SINGER retailers, click here!

Tune-in to The Martha Stewart Show, airing weekdays at 10 a.m. ET/9 a.m. CT on Hallmark Channel.

SINGER, the Cameo “S” Design, MODEL NAME, SEWING MADE EASY and SINGER IS SEWING MADE EASY are exclusive trademarks of The Singer Company Limited S.à r.l. or its Affiliates. ©2011 The Singer Company Limited S.à r.l. or its Affiliates. All rights reserved.


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    Jan 28, 2011, 07.29 PMby singultus

    I make projects from scratch, I often start a project because I find a special fabric or a pattern which I like. When I buy a vintage piece it has to fit and please me as it is otherwise I wouldn t by it (too lazy to alter anything).

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    Jan 28, 2011, 07.28 PMby Laurenn Mcmanus

    I much prefer Creating items from scratch as i usually get an idea “pop up” in my head and it needs to be exactly how I imagine it. Although if your brousing a second-hand store and you see a beautiful unique material it definitely needs to be made into something new, something of your own! =]

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    Jan 28, 2011, 07.26 PMby yiannagnak

    Both but I am happier when I remake something old.

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    Jan 28, 2011, 07.19 PMby tonierenee

    I prefer things that I have made from scratch, only because the things I have done have always been a lot more work than I thought in the beginning and don’t always turn out. I have somethings that I love the fabrics so much but I don’t have enough nerve to cut into them. When I get a new sewing machine and more skill, I will take those things on.

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    Jan 28, 2011, 07.18 PMby kallers

    I like sewing from “scratch”, as I find the fitting to be a bit less kludge-y. Though I find that vintage fabrics and large 2nd hand clothes make excellent fabric sources!

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    Jan 28, 2011, 07.05 PMby Christine Kelly

    From scratch, but if I find a piece of vintage clothing that I love I will revamp it.

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    Jan 28, 2011, 07.01 PMby lavenderlady

    I would have always said from scratch, but am branching out and trying more second hand alterations lately. I have a skirt that is too long, so I’m excited to make the dress that was shown in the video!

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    Jan 28, 2011, 07.01 PMby nettevivante

    I prefer making projects from scratch, but if I really like the fabric of a second-hand garment I also put my hand on changing its shape or making it into a totally different garment.

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    Jan 28, 2011, 07.00 PMby kbuckfeen

    i definitely would have to say altering! when i got married i had a friend help me in altering my grandma’s vintage wedding dress into something a little more modern- so special! one of my goals this year is to buy as little new clothing as possible and as often as i can, alter thrift store finds, or back of the closet finds, into more wearable items.

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    Jan 28, 2011, 06.57 PMby leonx

    scratch and altering, all to save the enviromen,t eco friendly .tip:charity shops are very good for cheap good mterial. BURDA AND SINGER THE BEST!

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    Jan 28, 2011, 06.54 PMby yihsueh

    I prefer to re-use old garment as much as possible. On average, 50% of fabric that is ever produced was dumped into trash- and mostly in the form of made garments, thanks to fast-food fashion from commercial apparel brands! I always feel guilty to through clothing away and I would try my best to give them a new life!

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      Jan 28, 2011, 07.50 PMby leonx

      well done your eco friendly awesome,

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    Jan 28, 2011, 06.54 PMby Katarzyna Muniak

    they made this dress so quickly? I am gonna make one now!

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    Jan 28, 2011, 06.47 PMby taiwo .

    I prefer to make them from scratch but altering garments can be fun too.

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    Jan 28, 2011, 06.44 PMby margiwarg

    I prefer making clothes from scratch. I do like to make smaller objects like bags out of older pieces though!

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    Jan 28, 2011, 06.32 PMby elleynamarie

    I’ve done both, but I definitely prefer to make clothes from scratch! :)

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    Jan 28, 2011, 06.30 PMby alvixen

    I prefer making from scratch. If I refashion something, it’s usually for a child because it’s hard for me to have enough fabric to remake into an adult garment.

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    Jan 28, 2011, 06.24 PMby easbrooke

    I have mostly made clothes from scratch because I’m afraid of cutting into second-hand clothes. I’m trying to be more creative in that area though because it would be cool to give a piece of clothing new life and love!

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    Jan 28, 2011, 06.24 PMby nehmah

    It’s six of one and half-dozen of the other, with me. It is much easier to make from the start. It is often a real challenge to remake or correct someone else’s errors. All in all, I would choose from the start. I can make enough errors on my own, thank you very much! Nehmah

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    Jan 28, 2011, 06.23 PMby locosewer

    I prefer from scratch, using vintage patterns. when you alter second hand garments it can take as much time, if not more, as if you were making a garment from scratch.

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    Jan 28, 2011, 06.23 PMby michelle ><><><

    From Scratch, but i do love vintage, i just like to keep them as close to the original as i can. <><thanks for the chance to WIN!

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    Jan 28, 2011, 06.21 PMby alicolette

    i love making garments from scratch, there is so much more freedom and creativity involved!

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    Jan 28, 2011, 06.18 PMby natclem

    I’d say that I’ve done an equal amount of both. The altering ones are usually more difficult and fun, but challenging is great! The ones I make from scratch turn out better, but not nearly as challenging…

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    Jan 28, 2011, 06.18 PMby cam557

    I usually make projects from scratch, but I also enjoy altering old garments into something new.

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    Jan 28, 2011, 06.15 PMby jenss-1

    I have done both, but getting a good fit is more difficult when recycling a garment. Plus, the fabric is “used” by definition, and worn or over-washed areas nearly always present problems. I might make a recycled skirt but that’s about it. I prefer to construct garments from scratch—ultimately its easier and a better fit.

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    Jan 28, 2011, 06.13 PMby msnew007

    I don’t have a preference…I enjoy doing both. I would prefer to learn new ways to alter old second hand garments into new ones to save money and the environment. There is such wonderful second hand pieces just waiting for old life!

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    Jan 28, 2011, 06.12 PMby amberlove

    I like making clothes from scratch—but I do love to incorporate bits of secondhand things, zippers, crazy fabric to pocket linings, ric-rac, etc.

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    Jan 28, 2011, 06.12 PMby Artimide

    I love to make clothes from scratch, but I also like to upsicle clothes that no longer fit, to make something new.

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    Jan 28, 2011, 06.09 PMby analogue

    I usually make clothes from scratch, but do often take & reuse usable bits from old garments that aren’t fit to be worn anymore, like buttons, zippers, bits of fabric etc.

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    Jan 28, 2011, 06.05 PMby wzrdreams

    I prefer to construct garmetns from scratch because I love picking out the pattern and fabric.

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    Jan 28, 2011, 06.05 PMby Purplerachel

    Definitely from scratch! Although I also like altering old garments.

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