This refashion starts with a man’s XL shirt I found on Ebay.
I know, it’s a darn good look for me. I bought it with the idea of refashioning, but I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do with it so I kept it in my wardrobe for like two years. During this time I did actually wear it as a kind of cardigan a couple of times. Then, one day whilst watching peep show, I made a startling discovery.
Yep, that is David Mitchell in my shirt. Well, now I had to do something to make this shirt wearable. It’s like a piece of cultural history… or maybe just a fun print from Matalan.
First, I tried on the shirt as a skirt to see how high I could leave it buttoned up whilst fitting across my hips and waist. This was to keep as much length in the skirt as I could. I then cut along this line. This was partly measuring, and partly eyeballing to cut across.
From the top section I cut the waistband pieces. I centered these from the button and buttonhole left on the top of the shirt as seen above. I had to go across the sleeve seams but that’s the price for trying to use as much of the shirt as possible. I cut the enough interfacing for the waistband, and also cut a little rectangle of extra fabric, as I had a panic that I hadn’t made it big enough. The lining fabric was cut from the wings of the Reginald costume I made for Halloween, so this skirt was entirely made from second use fabrics.
After interfacing the outer waistband, I attached the pieces. At this stage I tried it around my waist and realised I was wrong to panic, I had the size pretty close to correct in the first place. Easily solved, I simply pinched the excess at the centre back, marked and sewed right sides together, then cut the leftover fabric.
Now, before I create the shape for the skirt, I made the pockets. The sleeve pieces I still had attached to the main body of the skirt made perfect already made pockets. All I had to do was cut them away from the top of the skirt, because I didn’t want to get them caught in the waistband…
… And sew the sleeves/ pockets shut rights sides together.
I gathered the skirt in the same way as with my Refashioned America Dress. It’s amazing how much neater I think I was this time, after only the second try, but it’s definitely a confidence boost to see your skills improving each time. As before, I pinned the waistband, matching up the centre fronts and back, which I had cut little notches into. It turns out I had to let the gathers out a lot so it’s a subtle gather, but the process helps it fit to the waistband correctly without loosing the fullness of the skirt.
I attached the lining and waistband tops right sides together, then turned the lining onto the inside of the skirt. Tucking the raw edges under, I stitched along the line of the skirt to waistband seam. To keep this as invisible as possible, I sewed with the right side of the skirt facing up on my sewing machine, and taking it slow, whilst crossing my fingers that it was picking up the lining on the other side.
Success, it did! There’s one bit where it didn’t but hey, a majority is a victory here. At the ends, to keep away from the already existing fastening, I tucked the ends of the lining in before the buttonhole, and hand stitched that and the exposed raw ends of the waistband down.
A quick press, and this skirt is fit for any puke-point based party!
And here’s the back. You can see how the gathers aren’t too pronounced, yet the skirt manages to have an interesting silhouette, especially as the pockets create a slight tulip shape.
Here’s a close up of a pocket. I think it’s such a nifty way of utilising the original garment’s design for the new skirt.
I don’t have any pictures of me wearing this currently, but I’m sure it will turn up during Me-Made-May ’16, so keep an eye out. TTFN!