Day 21: I See Right Through You Top

Day 22: J Jillian Top
Day 20: Croch-hey! top

Today’s piece started out as a too-big dress from H&M.  I almost didn’t choose this one because I hate H&M.  I could easily go on a rant about them, and those who are already on the eco-fashion bandwagon know all about why I can’t stand them.

Just Google “H&M Sucks” (Or here…let me do it for you)…because they do.

Just like your labor practices, your dress isn't very pretty, H&M! :(

This dress fit me like a shapeless ruffled sack.  Plus, the lining was ripped in a couple of places.  I didn’t like how opaque this dress was, so, I snipped out the lining.

Snip!
The leftovers...maybe there's a future skirt in there?

Now I was getting somewhere!  I hacked off that stupid ruffle from the bottom of the dress.

Bye Mr. Ruffle!

I’m sure that ruffle will be making a comeback, just not on today’s piece.  :)

I took the dress in from the back 1″.  I had to go through the back, as this dress has a side zipper.  No biggie, as taking in one part is easier than taking in two!

First ya pin!
Then ya sew!

Next, I tackled that raw edge on the bottom.  It wasn’t going to fray or anything if I left it as-is, but leaving the edge raw really didn’t contribute anything to the piece.  I didn’t want to look sloppy, so I quickly hemmed it under.

Ahem...a hem.

I tried my new top on, but I wasn’t happy with the drape of it.  I tossed it on my dress form (I STILL don’t have a name for her. :( ), and gathered it a bit in the back.

Pinch and Gather.

I pinned my gathered area and sewed it together.  This is a neat trick for clothes that you borrow from other people that might be a bit too big.  You can do this on the outside or the inside and just safety-pin it (just make sure to really hide that pin).

Now that frumpy dress is a lovely summer top!

I love how my bright tank shows through!

The back is pretty sweet, too!

Hot Bustle action!

This top was perfect for my weekly Karaoke ritual.  ;)

Evelyn as Gaga!

I even scored a (literally) sweet new accessory!

Candy Jewelry tastes even better than you remember!

I was gnawing on my wrist all night!  I might still be on a sugar buzz!  This is one instance where disposable (i.e. edible)  fashion is A O.K.! ;)

On a side note…making this top got me a little down.  H&M and other fast fashion retailers churn out tons and tons of clothing that gets discarded after one or two wears.  The point of this blog and this year is to keep clothes out of the landfill, but there’s no way I can keep up with these sweatshop-powered giants.  There’s an SC poet (sorry, I can’t remember the name…I’m going to look it up in the magazine I have in my office and update this later today) who said,

“My making today will not fix the enormity of things.”

And that’s how I feel.  It makes this whole blog/my project seem more than a little silly.  Do you ever feel this way? :/

4.7 (93.1%) 58 votes

25 thoughts on “Day 21: I See Right Through You Top

  1. Great refashion, like the blue showing through your new black top! Also really like that linky think you did with google typing in the word search, howdya do that??

  2. I can understand that it feels like your working for something with little hope of making a visible difference, but I think you’re doing a good thing. Like with voting, the point shouldn’t be to win as much as to support your principles.

    I like how your refashions are clothes that look like clothes one could buy in a normal store, but with more personality. I look at them and think, “That’s something I would wear,” not, “Hum, that’s…. interesting.” :)

  3. Neither you nor I can change the world but we can make changes in our little corner of it. That is why I recycle, reuse, walk rather than drive, and try not to consume more than my fair share – I am not perfect but I try! That is all any of us can do!

  4. Hey girl – love what you did with that nasty dress from H&M. There are no H&M stores in Tampa, and now I’m thankful after being enlightened by your blog. See…you’re already changing the world – one outfit and one comment at a time. You are doing more than most of us, so kudos to you for helping us see things differently. I’m ALL about recycling and am a total thrift shop addict – what you do with clothing is quite inspiring. Keep up the great work and thanks for the insight into H&M. And btw – how COOL is that Google dealio when I clicked on your link? LOVE it :) Ali Now you just need to name your dress form – you need a naming contest!

  5. “Be the change you wish to see in the world” ~Gandhi…..that’s YOU!!! It is a lot like voting as Nethwen says and sometimes I’ll be voting wondering why I’m there…but collectively, hopefully, my vote will make a difference.

    You have no idea how much good you do sharing your ReFashions! My daughter and I have a whole new vision for clothes!! Now when we go into a thrift store we see the clothes in a whole new way!! I love that at 16 she is learning to repurpose and refashion clothes and make new and unique pieces!!

    Thank you so much for sharing your vision and fashions!! You ARE making a difference!!! :)

  6. You shouldn’t feel silly. You should feel great. If everyone felt that they as an individual don’t make a difference, then nobody would ever do anything. We each make a difference, both in our little corner of our world, and in the influence we have on those around us (which spreads as they then influence those around them). I love your re-fashions. They’re great inspiration for me to spend more time with my sewing machine! :-)

  7. Thanks you guys! :) You are the awesomest, kindest people! I really like what Nethwen said about it not being about winning, but sticking to your principles and doing what you can. Thanks so much for reading. I’m glad you guys like my little blog.

    And yes…it is time to have a “Name Jillian’s Dress Form” contest! The gears are a turnin’! ;)

  8. This is certainly not at all silly. I think it’s a wonderful project.

    You are inspirational – and while you might not be changing the world overnight, you are making a difference to the people you come in contact with. Big changes can start from a few people, spreading out until eventually companies start taking notice.

  9. I agree with all the above comments – seeing your refashions is an inspiration to all of us…..and I know what I am talking about……I sew for five grand-daughters. It is a challenge to keep them away from the malls and “But Grandma,everyone in my class has one but me!” mentality but I am trying and your posts are a help. We check your posts together and enjoy seeing your creativity.

  10. The point is NOT to change the world- because as a single person you cant, but you CAN make a difference! Thank you for this eye opening experience..

  11. RE: “My making today will not fix the enormity of things.”….

    Have you heard the story of the little kid walking down the beach and picking up starfish and tossing them back into the ocean? The tide had gone out and they all were going to die. A grown up (most narrow thinking is done by grown-ups, sadly) said to the boy, “You really aren’t going to save them all…it won’t really make a difference…” And the little boy picked up a starfish, tossed him back in the ocean and replied, “It’ll make a difference to that one…”

    That’s how I feel about the projects I do! Every time I create something new without making a purchase, it’s like tossing a starfish back into the ocean.

  12. That is one awesome shirt now! I’m going to keep my eyes open at my local thrift stores for something to refashion this way!

  13. I’ve been reading this blog backwards and this is one of the top ones for me …. I love it!!!

    I really hope that the rachel ray and pinterest feedback you are getting helps you push forward to do more great things like this!!!!
    I commend your courage for everything you have done on this blog, and I know it will make a difference in fashion especially with our new pinterest savvy world :)
    Keep doing a great job!!!!!

  14. This is my favorite re-fashion. I love it because you can make the tank layer any color that fits the whimsy of the day!

    With that being said, thanks for all you’re doing. I know this post is a little over a year old, but I hope that you don’t feel the same way as you did back then. You’ve come very far! Be proud of your accomplishments :)

  15. Jillian, i’ll tell you what i told my hubby when he poo-poo’d my attempts to be ‘green’; he said: ‘your small effort is not going to make enough of a difference to show.’ i replied: ‘yeah, & when 10,000 people all decide to share YOUR attitude instead of mine, then…You’re right; they won’t make any difference at all.’ ~ So you keep refashioning, & keep believing in what you’re doing!! EVERY little bit DOES help!! {Like with voting, as someone else mentioned: have you seen an election where the difference was less than 10…but you had decided to NOT vote, thinking it would not matter? If you & 9 others went ahead & voted… Well…} ;-)

  16. Just recently found your blog through pinterest and I have been looking at tons of your awesome creations and this top is amazing!! Love it!!!!

  17. As a newcomer to your fabulous site (I come here and spend way too much time every day now…), I know this comes a little late. And I’m sure others have said it before, and better than I, but… Maybe you cannot change the whole world, but you can change your corner of the world. For years I have tried to purchase most of my clothing from second hand resources partially because I feel as you do, and partially bc I prefer to support the charities they sponsor. Anyway…

    Thanks for all the inspiration ~ thanks to you I’m dressing much more stylishly these days;-)

  18. Just stumbled upon your blog and it is absolutely inspiring! As others have said… you go, girl, you have made and continue to make a difference :)

  19. Your efforts are like throwing a rock in the water, you create a ripple effect that spreads across the pond/lake/ocean. You have clearly made an impact on many and that compounds your very creative and thoughtful endeavors to save the planet, one garment at a time.
    I was shopping with my 14 yo daughter this evening and she was giving all of the reasons she doesn’t like H&M. I was impressed by her insight.
    I’m enjoying your blog and am a bit addicted.

  20. Hey Lady! I am loving your blog. I have been starting to make some of my own clothes lately and doing some refashioning, but you are totally inspiring me to see what I can do with some of the clothes I would normally pass by in the thrift store. Thanks for the inspo! :D

  21. You may be only one person doing a good thing, but look at how many folks you inspire with this blog. And what about the ones that don’t comment. Combined, that’s a lot of clothes that don’t land in the landfill. I used to only buy the stuff needing minor repairs. Now I changes large and small.

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