The Refashioners 2015: Self drafted too tight skirt :o)

Hey All,

Have you hear of the Refashioners 2015 challenge? This was my first year hearing about it, and I think the first time they are letting anyone who wants to compete for the giganto prize package to do so. The rules of the competition are simple: buy a thrifted men's collared shirt and transform it into something totally different and of course, totally awesome. No pressure right? Wrong! Have you seen some of the entries?  There are some really good ones.  I'll leave you to google it on your own though... mostly because I'm really not that blog savvy and I don't know how to put in a link.  Wah wah.

So anyways being the competitive (and cheap) person I am, I figured I would give the challenge a go.  I bought a men's shirt from housing works on the east side for 5 bucks and got to snipping.  Then I realized I forgot to take a 'before picture'.  Blast.  So I took this picture mid-dissection to prove that it did indeed start off as a men's button up:

When it came time to make it into something for myself, I went a little all over the place.  First I wanted some iteration of  a mini circle (probably a 1/4) skirt, but there wasn't enough fabric... as far as I could work out anyways.  Then I tried to fit the Washi tunic pattern by Made by Rae on my fabric and that didn't work either.  So then I went back to the skirt idea. I figured I had just enough fabric to do a mini A-line and if I got ambitious I could make a matching crop top to go with it.  Well I did get a mini skirt to juuuuust barely work out (if I think skinny-butt thoughts) but that took about all my patience.

To be honest this was the skirt that almost wasn't.  I had originally attempted to make it a high waisted skirt with a lining and an inch thick waist band, but first the lining was too thick for my thin shirt fabric, so I nixed it, and then for some reason when I finished the waist band it wouldn't at all. I swear the top of the skirt and the bottom of the waistband were the same length, but it was doing this awful pucker thing, that made the top of the skirt puff out and made me look... well awful. I kind of wonder if it had something to do with me interfacing the waistband?  Meaning maybe my unlined skirt was giving a bit, but my lined and interfaced waistband was was not able to?

Regardless of the reason I was so fed up with it, I cleaned up my entire sewing room and started a new project.  I was resolved to take pictures the next day, flipping the waist band down, calling it a play on the original collar of the shirt and being done with it.  Well the next day came and I put it on, flipped down the waist band, and looked in the mirror and thought to myself "no, I'm either not blogging this at all or I'm fixing it, I will not call this done and make it public."  So in the words of one of my old college roommates, I grew a pair of ovaries and cut off the waist band I had lovingly hand stitched a lining into (clearly that happened before I realized it would become my nemesis).  I cut it about a 1/4" down from the seam line and did it purely by eye.  That's how frustrated and over it I was.  It was pretty ballsy, but it was very liberating and ultimately worth it.


I then whipped together a bias strip from one of the arms and finished the waist.  This led me to realize that adding a little tie at the top might be a cute addition and could also allow for a nice closure as the first button is not quite at the top.  As you can see there's a distinct wrinkle pulling across the front. Unfortunately I'm fairly certain it could only be solved by extreme dieting or wearing spanks or something, because it's definitely too tight around the hips... buut on the plus side at least the waist isn't acting ridiculous.  At some point maybe I'll go back and see if I can't make the SA's slightly smaller at the side seams, or maybe I'll just offer it back to goodwill from whence it came.  

You can see on the back view I have another weird fitting wrinkle going on.  That one I simply can't figure out.  I put two darts in to reconcile the difference between my waist and hip measurements, but something is off about their placement because that wrinkle does not budge.  I tried making the darts longer, then shorter and then longer again and nothing worked.  So I gave up.  Clearly It's a running theme for this project.

Anyways, even though this project meandered a bit and ultimately didn't end up where I would have liked it, I'm still going to enter it into the Refashiner contest, because well... why not.  As a result I'm forced to create an Instagram account, so you all should feel free to follow me there as well! I'll post some sewing pics that didn't make it into my blog over the past couple months. My handle is JinxandGunner.  No surprise there right ;o).