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Athens Excursion Dress Refashion (With a Pocket!)

No-Sew Button-Up Shirt to Dress Refashion
A One-Shoulder Dress Refashion

Thanks to everyone for your sweet words of encouragement after my last post.  πŸ™‚  You’re all pretty much the nicest readers anyone could possibly have and I want to bake a batch of cookies for each and every one of you.

I don’t want you to worry about me though.  Creative slumps happen.  I’ve dealt with them before, and I’m sure I’ll deal with them again.  But the blog must go on!  πŸ™‚

Hoping to escape my slump, I booked a place on Airbnb, packed up my mini machine, and headed off to Athens, GA to catch some awesome live music and a bit of vintage shopping!

janome mini sewing machine
It’s as if my carry on was made for this.

My machine didn’t travel alone!  I tossed in this dress to refash as well!

a dress refashion with a pocket before

Total basic 90’s boringness here.  But the print is so nice!  Surely there’s something that can be done!

I started with a big chop!

Chopping off bottom of dress

Then, I pinned that raw edge down!

my mini pincushion
Has Mini Pincusion. Will Travel.

I ran this through my lil machine, like ya do…

janome sew mini

I pressed my new hem the best way I knew how…

pressing hem with flat iron
Desperate times call for desperate measures! πŸ™‚

…but still wasn’t too thrilled with this frock yet.

I cut a (really jagged…sorry!) square from the cut-off bit.

cutting a pocket
It looks like I let a 4-year-old do it!

Then, I pinned the raw edges down as I pinned it to my dress.

Future Pocket!
Future Pocket!
sewing on pocket
Looking forward to a lil storage space!

I cut off a bit of that bottom scrap and used it as a sash for the waist of my new frock (because old habits die hard), although it would also be cute with a free waist too!  πŸ™‚

easy refashion with pocket after
Can you tell I’m freezing?

Unfortunately, the weather report for that day was a wee bit optimistic.  It’s still chilly here in the south (Good God, WILL IT EVER END?!?!?).  

Luckily, I brought a thrifted chambray shirt to cover up with!

Do I look like I'm trying to hard to be a hipster?
Do I look like I’m trying to hard to be a hipster?

I really liked this outfit, and enjoyed wearing my sweet secondhand Aldo studded brogues (a steal at $15!) and my fun minty tights.  πŸ™‚

Can you tell it's reallllly windy?
Can you tell it’s reallllly windy?

My pocket was pretty swell as well!

pocket close up
a happy hand holder!

I fell in love with this delightful little vintage shop that had everything one could possibly desire:

Jillie loves Cillies!
Jillie loves Cillies!
Cillies storefront
Many treasures await!

Seriously…just looooook!

boots in vintage store
Need a pair of boots?
dresses in vintage store
How about a lovely frock?
Lots of vintage purses!
Lots of vintage purses!

You can check out this sweet shop’s Facebook page right here!

I somehow managed to escape with only a silly little fish necklace.

fish necklace
I think I’ll name him Phil.


refashionista easy dress refashion with pocket before and after
No-Sew Button-Up Shirt to Dress Refashion
A One-Shoulder Dress Refashion

31 thoughts on “Athens Excursion Dress Refashion (With a Pocket!)”

  1. No, it doesn’t look like you’re trying too hard to be a hipster. I love it! It went perfectly with the tights. I love that color!

  2. I’m getting ready for a little vacay myself but, now I’m even *more* excited because you made me realize I can take my machine with me! This is about to be a very productive trip πŸ™‚

  3. I’m pretty sure I had that dress back in the 90’s or one really similar. The refash looks great!

    Ditto to what everyone has already said, when you need a break you need a break.

  4. I have used hair straighteners to iron clothes before, it works well in an emergency.
    I love your blog, but if you need a rest give yourself a break, and let yourself recover a while. Be kind to you πŸ™‚

  5. Cute refashion. I’m glad you find a little mojo. I like Ali’s suggestion of you visiting your reader’s hometown thrift stores. I’ll start saving to have you fly out to California!!

  6. Ilove the tights with it and then the shirt looked soo good with it too, wish I was a skinny mini like you. I cannot believe all you found in that store was Phil, I was getting excited, oh well he is handsome, but better luck (or mood) next time.

  7. I love Phil! I picked up a similar pin at an antique shop while in San Antonio last year. Your refashions are soooo cute and you accessorize so well!

  8. Cute; love the look with all the colors. Speaking of boots where did you get your gorgeous red cowboy boots I saw on some of your refashions?

  9. I used to have two dresses this exact same shape with gorgeous prints. I finally passed them on after not wearing them for 5 years and before discovering a sewing machine. I miss those dresses now. Such a cute job!

  10. “Mini-Whirrrrr!” cracked me up πŸ™‚

    The 90’s dresses really had some nice prints, didn’t they?

    I agree with the commenters who remarked on your great accessories. You know how to do it right.

  11. The bit with the straightening iron was nothing less than genius. You need to find yourself something totally awful as a challenge to scare you out of your slump. It’s prom season. An 80s number would give you lots to work with.

  12. Haha Yes! I thought I was the only one who used my flat iron for hems. I also staple my fabric instead of using pins sometimes. Lazy sewing lol

  13. Hi Jillian! Long time Athenian here and I’m so glad you made it to Cillies! Such an awesome store. I would highly recommend Community next time you’re in town. It’s a vintage/sustainable clothing store. Their website is
    I absolutely love your blog and I look forward to all of your posts! Your blog encouraged me to finally learn how to use my sewing machine last year and have been working on my own refashions since. Thank you so much for sharing with us! Hope you make it out to AthFest this June!

  14. I love your blog and I LOVE Athens! I went to grad school there. Best town in the world. I hope you made it to Agora, my friend’s shop. If not, check it out the next time you’re in Athens. It’s amazing.

  15. Well, it looks like you had enough mojo to book a little trip and re-fashion a sweet old 90’s dress into something wearable. LOVE the shoes. I can’t believe what you do with that little mini-machine. My 9 year old burnt hers right up sewing so much. I have a little mini travel iron that is only about 5″ long. It fold flat for traveling produces a lot of steam. It really works great. It is a Rowenta and a workhorse. I think I paid about $22. for mine on sale. xo Diana

  16. cute refashion, actually I still have a very similar long tank in the back of my closet and I will bring it out and refashion it for summer…. either to wear over tights, you inspired me.
    Oh by the way, I would have gone crazy in that resale store, some nifty prints in there….
    made to be refashioned or recycled into something really different. Recently I bought
    cheap cheap tops with interesting prints and turned them into pillow covers…. worked out great. Edith Your ChicagoConnection

  17. I love your refashions!!! You inspire me to give it a try – I just wish I had you by my size for the shopping trip & first project! Can’t wait to see more from you!!

  18. Hey Jillian – I felt so bad after reading your last post and meant to comment. It really sucks when you’ve lost your mojo, and especially for a creative person, it really sucks. I’ve been down that road too, thank goodness you have us readers to perk you up. Hey – I’ve got an idea for your next big thing: arrange stays at your readers’ towns and visit THEIR thrift stores. Come on down to Tampa, FL where it’s WARM and I will show you an abundance of thrift and consignment stores, the likes of which you have never seen. Got a futon with your name on it! Not kidding. In the meantime, love the refash and I really love coming across those types of stores, the bounty to be found! Glad to have you back – love Phil the fish. πŸ™‚ Ali


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