Hello All! I have a really subtle/hard to photograph/slightly underwhelming refashion to share! 🙂
When everyone at my workplace was encouraged to wear garnet and black to support the Carolina Gamecocks on a recent game day, at first I was like…
I just don’t care about football. I want to. I really do. Other people seem to get a lot out of it, and I think that’s great…for them. Or…why can’t other people get as jazzed about the things I’m into as they do football? This January, do you think they’d be willing to tailgate for the premiere of Downton Abbey?
Not wanting to be a spoilsport, I thought I’d bust out my NEW machine and play with some of its decorative stitches.
Stay tuned in coming weeks for more info on this machine, as well as a comprehensive review. But for now, I just wanted to make sure you were properly introduced to my sewing room’s newest inhabitant. 🙂
Alright! The refashion!
I started with this shapeless frock of an awkward length:
I’m a sucker for black dresses. They’re great for those days when I wake up and just can’t bear trying too hard to look nice for the same room of people I see every day. By now they know the magic’s in the makeup, know what I mean? 😉 Black is also flattering. So when I find a black dress that I think can be saved, I pounce.
The first thing I needed to deal with was that length.
When I turned my new dress inside out to hem it, I noticed something strange on the neckline. Someone had sewn a penny into a triangle along the front collar. This is why it drapes so nicely in the front! I’d never seen this before, but thought it MUST be a sign of good luck, so I kept it! 🙂
…Back to the hem!
I pulled my ironing board into my living room (which is all of 4 feet away from my sewing room), and watched a bit of Mad Men while I pinned.
I stitched my hem down with matching black thread.
Now…I could have just left this refashion right there, but I REALLY wanted to explore the customization options on my new machine. Plus…I had to feign a little school spirit for my alma mater!
I loaded up my machine with garnet thread and picked a stitch. I had pllllllenty of options!
I settled on a pretty Greek Key design.
My Pfaff’s display showed me what the stitch would look like, as well as telling me which foot I would need and other useful info:
I just snapped the old foot off and snapped the new one on!
See that groove on the foot to the right? That gives the wider stitch room as the fabric travels across the machine and keeps it from getting all bunched up. This is why it’s so important to make sure you’re using the right foot (and why it’s so nice that this machine tells me which one I need to use).
First, I embellished the hem.
The sleeves and sash quickly followed!
I was getting pretty excited about how designer-y my dress was looking, so I put a zipper foot on and embellished that too!
And just look at that dress now!
Here’s a closer look!
My frock enjoyed a fun after-work outing with a fellow blogger!
I ran into a couple of other pals as well. 🙂
As promised, this refashion isn’t exactly dramatic, but I do really love how the subtle embellishments I added made an otherwise plain dress unique and special. 🙂
44 thoughts on “A Subtle Gamecock Refashion”
I’ve read your whole blog probably 3 or 4 times. I’m a mostly self-taught seamstress and a nurse. At work I pour out empathy until I run dry. Then I come home and read your blog. Your creativity helps revive mine. There is something healing in the creative process. Thank you for putting yourself out there in spite of occasional negative comments and criticism. I really enjoy the work you do.
So happy to see you refashioning again. What happened to your other pfaff?
Diana, Princess of Wales (and other royals who spend a lot of time outdoors in the wind and getting into and out of helicopters) had weights sewn into the hems of her frocks, for modesty’s sake. I’m not sure if royal dressmakers use pennies, though. They might use some kind of metal washer, so that it can be stitched into place.
I’m pretty sure that the Duchess of Cambridge hasn’t done that yet, based on all of the leggy photographs that keep turning up! Does anyone else think she enjoys the extra attention to her (admittedly gorgeous) legs?
This dress looks fabulous on you, Jillian.
I am curious how you feel about the penny in the neckline? Is it something you will try in the future?
I really might! I think it’s a neat trick for a neckline that isn’t draping as well as you’d like. 🙂
Oh my goodness. I clicked over to your blog from a link on Buzzfeed a few months ago and was interested and then found it again from Pinterest and I have literally started at your first post and worked my way back and with that said, YOU ARE MY HERO JILLIAN! Gah! I also blog, so the pure fact that you kept it up for so long is amazing to me. Also, your full year of refashions are LEGIT! I have always been terrible at sewing, like I broke 2 of my sisters sewing machines (shhhhh, she doesn’t know it was me) in a row and vowed to never do it again. But you have SERIOUSLY inspired me to go out of my comfort zone and do things I never thought I would be able to before! That said, I am going to try and find a fair inexpensive machine (hopefully soon) and refashion some of my Goodwill finds! I basically only shop there for clothes, why pay full price when I can pay less than half and have something that’s new to me!?!?! THANK YOU! You are an angel!
So cute! And I also think your hair looks cute like that, doing the flippy-thing. Keep on posting all your refashes…
OMG! That sewing machine is to die for!
Tailgating for the premiere of Downton Abbey Season 6! Name the place and I am there. 🙂
Great idea! If you wear it with tiger print boots, you’ll never be asked to another football tailgate:-). Love the other commenter’s idea of downton refash
Love your refashions. As for the game last Saturday, well…Life between the hedges. My daddy was a Dawg which I still root for today.
Love your creative work.
Another cute addition to your bulging wardrobe closet. I espicially like your goofy expressions when you pose in the “before” shots, how a cute girl like yourself can make such funny faces is a gift! I wish I had your patience with sewing machine but they scare me..lol. Keep doing your thing and sharing.. Please
Brazil is a poor country, people do not find clothing stores used to reform because it uses clothing to rasgar.Mas I still follow their posting and love all of them. congratulated
I like the new logo on the site and am glad to see you’re posting again. I couldn’t see the detail in the full photo but I liked how it looked as you were sewing it. :-))
I would so be there for a Downton Abbey tailgate! Or any Downton Abbey such thing. I would be ecstatic to see a refashion in honor of the premier! 😀
Love your site!! I’m probably not your “average” follower at 56, but I LOVE seeing what you do with your thrift-store buys! Also a thrift store shopper, I’ve tried a few of your ideas on some of my great finds and haven’t messed anything up yet. I truly look forward to what you will do next! My absolute favorite was your long “ugly-sweater” dress. It was beautiful! Keep up the good work! We think alike on Downton Abbey, too, as it is one of the best shows on TV!! Cannot wait until January!!
I am so excited that you have the new Pfaff Creative 1.5! I want a new machine and I think this one would be perfect for me. I look forward to seeing what you can do with it in the future. Oh! I also totally agree with you about sports… And Downton Abbey. 🙂
I’ve seen this penny trick in clothing, it does give a lovely drape effect, and in the bottom of curtains. This is why we love you, you share information and inspire! It is sooo good you are back, and rearing to go! 🙂 love Jillian.
I do so love your posts!!
I love how you think
I think my favorite part is the penny trick! (the modest hemline a close second)
I love your new machine, but I am really intrigued with the penny. I have sewing for over 50 years and I have not seen that idea.
Great stitch detail! Great look for you. You’re teaching me something about altering clothes, thanks!
I love the dress… And the penny in the neckline idea! Going to try that 🙂
Subtle detail in clothing is a lost art, and it fits you so flatteringly!
Love the dress with the subtle highlights. Looks really good, even on days other than game day. NOW make a Downton Abbey refash, and I’ll be right there with tea and crumpets! Cheerio!
Firstly, awesome machine! Love the refashion too. And finally, Downton has just started here in the UK, I can often be found shouting “SHALL I FETCH THE PIG MAN?” in celebration.
OK! I am quite jealous of your sewing machine and am VERY interested to hear how you like it. Also interested in this penny pocket! Was this a handmade? Love your blog by the way!!!!
Totally with you regarding football! I knew you’d make that dress look great – love it!
Very cool. And I’d so tailgate with you for Downton Abbey. Can’t wait to hear about the new machine!
I love those stitch options! I want one of those machines…says the woman with a hundred projects that never get done.
You will love your Pfaff. I have an older model,7570, and have loved it for years!
Love your blog!
I own a Pfaff that was very expensive in the ’70s when I bought it. Curious to know about your new baby. Luckily you can take it off your taxes!
I have sewing machine envy! I couldn’t see the details in the redo but I’ll take your word for it. The dress looks great! You are so clever to redo clothes than to spend tons of money on new.
wow, pretty cool machine.
REALLY nice! What an amazing new machine – I sure hope they gave it to you for free for promotion reasons! You deserve it!
Awesome new machine! Can’t wait to see all the new tricks you will do with it!
Love it! My husband and I are both football crazy, but we would also totally tailgate before the Downton premiere.
I think you are a genius! Love the dress, very inspiring.
You make my day!!! So inspiring
Très cool. I’d buy that.