Refashion Runway All Stars: Time to Vote on the Button Challenge


Time to see what all of these talented ladies have been working on this week and be sure to vote for your favorite at the bottom of this post.

Have fun!


Gema from Sequins and Slippers

“After last week’s metallic round, I was feeling a little anxious about what buttons could offer me, in the way of inspiration. As the first thing that popped into my head was ‘Pearly Kings and Queens’, I did a bit of research on the London tradition…

I was a LONG time pondering whether or not it would be a good idea to replicate something so iconic; and in the end I made my mind up, purely if only for the sake of wearability… At the start of this Runway I promised myself I would only make things I’d wear, and I couldn’t honestly say I’d be wearing a ‘Pearly Queen’ outfit more than once in my life! So here we are, with a toned-down ‘pearly-inspired’ dress, made from a handmade dress I found in a local charity shop…


The main danger with this dress is that I have to avoid standing too close to a naked flame… it’s made from a man-made fibre, and rather shiny in certain light… but hey, it doesn’t fray – and it sews like a dream, so it became my canvas.

I started by removing the sleeves, taking the dress in, a little at a time, applying darts through the front and back, and also taking in the side seams. But I didn’t want to lose any of the length, so I took down the hem, added a scalloped edge, and then sewed buttons strategically all over the dress…

I think what I like most about this dress is the fact it was handmade originally, and now it’s gone through further handmade ‘treatments’ to make it wearable once again, for little old me.:)


I’m pleased with how the buttons create weight, and add movement, to the scalloped hem of the dress – and also how they create an accent of ‘light’ when the sun hits them…

buttons shining

As ever, I can’t wait for this to be posted, so I can admire all the other ladies’ outfits… whatever happens, whoever makes it through, I know I’ll continue to be inspired by what is created – by both contestants, and people sewing along – right through to the climax of this season’s Refashion Runway!!


Thanks All x



Marissa from The Refash Stash

“When I heard that the 3rd challenge was buttons I thought to myself BUTTONS!!?!? I
LOVE buttons! I have always admired my mom’s extensive button collection! So, when I
took an interest in sewing I was ecstatic to start collecting my own buttons! So
there I was at every fabric store sale and thrift store buying buttons….


Got buttons?

image1 (2)

I found this dress with buttons down the back which inspired me for this challenge.


I made the neckline in the back into a v-neck. I hemmed bottom by 4 inches.
I made a sash out of the scrap I cut from the bottom of my dress.
My idea for buttons was to sew buttons into a nice floral pattern. I printed out an
ivy pattern and traced it on my dress.

Next Up: Accessories!

I started with a white t-shirt to make a bag. I cut off the sleeves and neckline. I
sewed the t-shirt at the bottom and cut the access into fringe.
To top off my new bag I sewed on the biggest buttons I had. Then I sewed stings of
buttons amongst the fringe.
To top my outfit off I hot glued buttons onto earring posts! I also made my very own
button bracelet! I have always admired a button bracelet that my mom bought at a
garage sale, so I made my own!








Happy Refashioning!!!!



Jen from Diary of a Madmama

“For this week’s button-themed challenge, I knew I wanted to make an entire ensemble
out of several components.


I started out with a plain black t-shirt and a plethora of buttons. After printing
out an Eiffel Tower-shaped image I found online, I traced the image onto a piece of
iron-on adhesive and ironed it to the front of my shirt. With that as a guide, I
spent the next several hours sewing buttons onto the shirt to match the shape of the
Eiffel Tower image.

Photo Aug 19, 11 13 36 AM_Fotor

I then wanted to make a fluffy tulle skirt to wear with the t-shirt, so I found an
old slip I never wear, and a curtain to use as the lining, and about 10 yards of
tulle. Using a circle skirt tutorial I found online (I’d never made a circle skirt
before), I cut out 6 layers of tulle and then used the same method to cut out the
curtain-lining. Once all my pieces were laid out, I measured a piece of elastic to
fit my waist, sewed it together and attached the slip, curtain and tulle pieces to
the waistband to create my new skirt.


I wasn’t liking the way the white waistband looked, so I decided to make a belt to
wear over it. I had some leftover leather from a previous refashion, so I cut a
piece from that out , attached fasteners and spent the next several hours sewing
black buttons all over it.

belt before pic

Of course I needed a purse to go with my new outfit, so I grabbed a burlap table
runner my friend gave me and cut the ruffled ends off and sewed the pieces together
to create a purse. I then added some handles.


I wanted to add a bunch of flowers to my purse, so I grabbed some black and white
cashmere sweater pieces (from previous refashions) and cut a bunch of strips out of
them. I sewed basting stitches along the sides of each strip and gathered them up to
form flowers and then attached them to the purse with ivory and black buttons.

Now I just needed a pair of shoes to complete my look! I recently found these
open-toed shoes at my local Goodwill for $2.25 but they needed a little jazzing up,
so into the button stash I went, and several hours and lots of hand sewing later,
they were all done.


Photo Aug 19, 10 44 34 AM_Fotor

Photo Aug 19, 10 44 14 AM (2)_Fotor

Photo Aug 19, 11 06 47 AM_Fotor

Photo Aug 19, 11 08 39 AM_Fotor

Photo Aug 19, 11 11 08 AM_Fotor

Photo Aug 19, 11 12 25 AM_FotorYou can see the step-by-step tutorial on my blog, Diary of a MadMama. (link:
~Jen “


Susan from Second Chances by Susan

“When Beth sent us the list of challenges, I looked at buttons and thought, huh?
What would I do with buttons? To be honest, I have quite a button stash, including
some fun vintage buttons. You would think I would try to use some of those fun
buttons, but in the end I used plain white buttons! But, used in the right way,
plain white buttons can have just the right impact.

I started with a men’s polo shirt, and a large pair of elastic waist polyester
pants. The pants had a nice pocket detail that was going to be perfect for what I
wanted to do.

I also wanted to make a tote bag, so I gathered together a heavyweight pillowcase, a
striped belt, some jute rope, large eyelets, leftover scraps from last weeks studded
blouse, and some thrifted fabric I had in my stash.

I used the pants to make a nautical style skirt. The pockets were fashioned into a
functioning button closure so no zipper was necessary. I also placed a kick pleat
in the back hem of the skirt for ease of movement.

hand behind head

I removed the elastic and replaced it with a regular waistband.

skirt detail

The men’s polo shirt was cut down to size using a well-fitting t-shirt as a guide.
I used the ribbing trim that was originally on the sleeves to make my new v-shaped


I added a piece of the striped belt and few white buttons to trim it out. You can’t
see in the photos, but I also added faux button holes across from the buttons.

top detail

I drafted my own pattern to make the tote. It has pockets inside and out. I
trimmed the outside pockets with the striped belt and fabric scraps from the last
week’s blouse.


I added large eyelets so I could attach my jute rope handles. Who would have
thought that I would use square knots in back to back outfits during this

tote detail

I lined the tote with some thrifted polka dot fabric.

tote detail 2

My photo shoot at the marina was not without its share of mishaps. First, the dock
was locked! But that was resolved by some nice people with a key. Second, I forgot
the memory card for the camera. That was resolved the only way possible, and that
was to take pictures with the ipad. Do you know how hard it is to take pictures
with an ipad on a floating dock? And lastly, my heels kept getting stuck in the
grates. Fun times!

stuck heel

I think I am most excited about this outfit so far since I have always liked a
nautical look. Now if I just knew someone that owned a yacht!


For a details on how I created this look, you can visit my blog, Second Chances by
Good luck to all the ladies and happy sewing!”


Miche from Buttons and Birdcages

“This weeks challenge was surprisingly (and frustratingly) hard for me.
Maybe it’s that the thought of hand sewing a bunch of buttons to something
terrifies me, or maybe it;s all the extra pressure I put on myself because
buttons are literally in my blog name..

Anyway, after many a headache and thought of dropping out of the contest I
came up with this outfit, which I actually completely adore.I have a ton of
buttons that people have given me over the years, I use them for projects
here and there but honestly I’m usually making jewelry or glueing them to


I jumped around with a ton of ideas, but landed on that the buttons should
add a little flair to my outfit and not be an intense part of my outfit
just because of the challenge. Keeping with my festival style, I cut the
dress into a fringe vest and used excess fabric to add a little flare to
the leg warmers. I’m so in love with the button head wrap and belt that I
literally can’t wait to wear them out <3″


IMG_20160819_180854 (1)


*Buttons and Birdcages*


Carissa from Carissa Knits

“My first thought when I heard the theme for this week was a basic button-up
shirt dress. I just love their casual simplicity – so comfortable and easy
to wear, yet so versatile in styling possibilities. To create my version, I
started with this way-too-large faux wrap dress I thrifted for $2. I first
removed the ties and zipper and then separated the skirt, bodice, and
sleeves from one another so I could re-fit each individually. I took in the
bodice along each of the four princess seams, as well as the sides. Next, I
took in all the skirt seams in the same manner as for the bodice, cut it
open up the front center panel, and brought the hem up by about 6 inches.
Once the skirt and bodice were re-attached, I trimmed the points of the
criss-cross bodice panels to align with the front edges of the skirt. I
used the old ties to create button bands along each front edge and then
made *all the buttonholes ever *along one side. I re-worked the original
doubled-up cuffs so as to lengthen the sleeves a bit. The remnants of the
original ties became little button straps to hold the cuffs up. Finally, I
reattached the sleeves to the dress, taking them in at the same time.


Buttons-Carissa-After 1

Of course, no button-up dress is complete without buttons though! The
inspiration for these actually came while the dog and I were out walking
one morning. A neighbor had trimmed some dead branches from their tree and
left them at the curb for pick-up. So I picked them up! I dragged them
home, sawed off little slices, and drilled two tiny holes in each disc. A
light sanding and lemon oil to bring out the wood grain, and they were
ready to be stitched onto my dress.

Buttons-Carissa-After 2

Buttons-Carissa-After 3

Since I had used something unconventional to make my buttons, I thought I’d
use some actual buttons to make something unconventional. Along with an old
belt, part of a necklace, and a broken zipper, I turned several gold
buttons into two new pieces of arm candy!”

Buttons-Carissa-After 4

Buttons-Carissa-After 5

Buttons-Carissa-After 6


Wow! Everyone worked so hard this week!

Now it’s your turn to vote:

Click on your favorite and then be sure to click the vote button at the bottom so your vote will be counted. Then stay tuned next Saturday morning to see who won.

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Refashion Runway: The Winner of the Metallic Challenge

I had NO idea when I came up with this “brilliant” idea of having an All-Stars season on Refashion Runway how hard it was going to be to have a winner each week and how hard it was going to be to “send someone home”. These women are ALL winners in my book, but here’s how the votes and judges scores shook out.

We actually have three winners this week.

Carissa’s pleated skirt from a curtain and necklace definitely wowed everyone.

Metallic-Carissa-After 1

Jen’s lace dress with the penny embellishments was a big hit with you all this week, too.


And Susan’s versatile jacket, skirt and necklace amazed everyone, too.

trees_hand on hip

Great job everyone!!!!

But, now the hard part. We have to say good-bye to one of our All-Stars.


It’s with a very heavy heart that we have to say good-bye to Mary from Thrifty Chic.

But we’re not going to let her go with out a nice prize.


But before we say good bye, let’s see what she had in store for us with the Button Challenge:

“Hi Everyone!

I had such fun with the project this week. When I considered the challenge of buttons, I wanted to totally transform the look of an ordinary garment with the use of buttons. I am not into a military or costume vibe, so what could I do that would relate to my life?

Enter a shirt my husband was going to throw away. It was a great denim shirt that had been well worn and loved with a wonderful vintage color and texture. I said NOOOOOO! I have an idea for that!

Before ft copy

Before bk

The refashion started with the fit. First, I cut down the shirt to fit using one of my old shirts as a pattern guide.

cut down

Then I added these beautiful pearl and copper buttons from my stash to the collar and sleeve placket to mimic studs. It took me two or three tries to achieve a good look!



The final step was to add a decorative ribbon to the placket and put coordinating copper buttons on the rest of the shirt


after 3 detail

This past Saturday was a great day with my husband at the Getty Museum. I finally had a chance to take some pictures away from my humble abode! I love how this piece fits into my wardrobe and it has a totally different look thanks to buttons!!!!”

after 2


Thanks so much for joining us this season, Mary and I hope you have a wonderful school year!!!

Coming up next:

Refashion Runway: Time to Vote on the Button Challenge




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Refashion Runway Season Four: Metallic Sew Along

A big thank you to everyone who has been sewing along during Metallic week. If you haven’t had a chance to vote for your favorite metallic refashion from last Saturday, be sure to click here to get your vote in before midnight tonight.

Let’s take a look at what some of our readers have been busy creating.


Molly from Molly Made It

“From the dress, I used the metallic bottom half to
make a skirt which fit me. I added silver beads to the trim near the hem
for some added shine. The top has a really cool metallic zipper treatment
at the neckline! I fit the top for a more flattering look.




DSC00945 (1)


You can see my blog post at Molly Made It  for
complete descriptions of what I did.

Can’t wait to see what the contestants have come up with …. SO much falls
under the term “metallic.”

Thanks for a fun challenge!

Molly Lucien”


Elizabeth from Elizabeth Made This

“I made this top out of a white sweater with silver
threads running through it, a blue featherweight sweater, strips of gold
metallic linen leftover from another project. For lining, I used an old
camisole and some gold polka dot ponte salvaged from a pair of culottes I
made that just didn’t fit as I wanted them to. The project details are on
my blog here:;






Claudia from Sew Lil Time gave the metallic challenge a mod 60’s vibe.

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Kristin Kovacs

I did manage to find something metallic in my stash here, so I was excited
to sew behind the scenes this week.

My before items were a top that the gathering didn’t quite fit correctly
under my bust but I wore during pregnancy because it had room on the
bottom, and the blue shirt was another pregnancy top.



Both are a little see through, so together it’s perfect for a skirt and a
lining, and it gives a little peek of color from under the metallic top
part. So I cut the bottom part off the metallic top and right under the
sleeves on the blue top, added some side darts for shaping, and sewed in
the “lining”.



It’s nice and light for these horribly humid and hot spell we are having


Charlotte sewed along along with us again from New Zealand. (I love how sewing brings people together from all over the world.:) )

Her cute little model wasn’t available this week for the metallic challenge, but she is going to love the butterflies.




Cassidy from Frankly Cassidy

I took an old maxi dress I made back when I was a less experienced sewer
and turned into a cowl necked top. The light grey stripes have a bit of
sparkle woven in, hence the metallic theme. I blogged about it in more
detail here –



Stine from Denmark had fun adding metallic patches this week.

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Laura from Accidental Seamstress was inspired by this challenge and came up with a 4 way tunic this week:

“This two piece Prom Dress (or costume, perhaps?) had a lovely purple metallic
detailing over all the fabric. On camera it translates more “eggplant” but it’s
actually a very bright jewel toned purple. Also, it looks likes glitter from afar
but it is, in fact, metallic floss thread that gives it its appearance:) Underneath
the metallic the fabric is all black. I used only the fabric from the skirt and
removed the lining from it completely. I played with the shape on my dress form and
came up with a one-shoulder tunic. The metallic is a little too “zsa zsa zsu” for my
personal taste… so I played around with the material a little bit more and made
some modifications to the seams to make it reversible so I could just wear the black
side if I didn’t want to show off the metallic. Then, I played around with it some
more and discovered that I could wear it as a halter! So, an “accidental” (har har)
reversible 4-way tunic was born.”









Vicky Myers from Vicky Myers Creations joined us again this week and turned a dress into a cute top.

“I’ve been meaning to try a curved
hem, layered top for sometime! I’m really pleased with the result and
learned lots making the garment.”

1980's dress

Create a top from a former dress, pattern free


Great job, ladies.

If you haven’t had a chance to vote for your favorite Metallic Refashion, be sure to click here and vote before midnight tonight.

Stay tuned tomorrow to find out the winner of the Metallic Challenge.

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Refashion Runway Season Four: Time to Vote- Metallic

Nothing crashes a little fashion high faster than these words:

“Excuse Ma’am, but would you like to do this in private or are you Ok out here?”


“What do you mean it looks like I have an explosive device wrapped around my hips?”

I thought I was looking pretty darn cute in my little black and white sweater skirt as I went through airport security. I even had Pre-Check so I didn’t have to take off my boots and spoil the look.

Well, apparently, I find out as I’m getting swabbed from head to toe, little metallic threads running through the fabric of your skirt are not a good idea at the airport.

Note to self:

Don’t wear metallic threads on an airplane….


But these gals certainly made it through Refashion Runway security with flying colors this week. Talk about creative and thinking out of the box.

I had such a good time opening up my inbox his week and seeing their work.

Enjoy! And don’t forget to vote for your favorite at the bottom of the post!!


Jen from Diary of a MadMama

“Ever since I found out all of the themes for this season, I’ve been looking
most forward to this week because of the metallic theme.
I started out with two curtains that were given to me and used them to make
a shift dress from an old pattern I’ve had for ages.

After sewing the dress pieces together, I got busy adding the metallic
aspect. I gathered a bunch of pennies, soaked them in a vinegar salt
mixture to clean them up and pounded holes in them using a punch and die
set I ordered online. Once I had all the pennies punched, I sewed them onto
the collar and bottom hem. I decided to use some of the leftover curtain
material to make a belt and embellished it with pennies as well. I even
made two penny buttons to use to fasten the back of the dress.





I absolutely love this dress. I feel kinda like a gypsy when I wear it and I love the jingly sound it makes when I move. What can I say? I love the sound of money!😉





It’s been so much fun to participate in this season of Refashion Runway. I
love being challenged and I don’t know if I would’ve thought up the idea to
put money on my clothing if it wasn’t for this competition.

blog collage



Thanks again for this awesome opportunity!

If you want to see the detailed refashion, check out my blog, Diary of a



Carissa from Carissa Knits

“I love to learn new crafting techniques, and this week’s metallic challenge
gave me a great excuse to try something new. I had read about creating
permanent pleats by steaming with a vinegar-water mixture. I found a pair
of ultra-high-sheen, gold satin (well, polyester) curtains at the thrift
shop. I first cut off the little valance thing and used it to experiment
with the pleating process. Once my sample had gone through the washer and
dryer and come out with its pleats still intact, I was able to use the rest
of that curtain panel to create my new skirt. I cut it in thirds and joined
them together to form a rectangle nearly 12 feet long. Then I spent hours
and hours measuring, marking, folding, pinning, and basting before it was
finally time to do my vinegar steaming. Once all the pleating was complete,
I installed an invisible zipper inside one of the pleats, making it even
more invisible. I used the rod pocket from the top of the curtain, along
with some interfacing, to create a waistband which also got the vinegar
treatment. Lastly, I hand-stitched a hook-and-eye just above the zipper.
Then into the wash it went, and it didn’t touch an iron again between the
dryer and the camera! Hooray, science!


To go with my gold skirt, I pulled out an unflattering silver lace bubble
skirt from a clothes swap years ago. Once I removed the bottom hem and
waistband so I could flatten out the bubble, I used a well-fitting top to
trace out my pattern from both the lining and the lace. Next, I attached
the front lining and front lace to each other along the bottom, armholes,
and neckline, and then the back lining and back lace were sewn in the same
places. Then the front and back panels were joined at the shoulders and
side seams. Finally, a couple of bust darts were added for a more fitted

Metallic-Carissa-After 1

And I couldn’t let that tassel from the original curtain valance go to
waste. I pulled out an old gold necklace of my grandmother’s, a big glass
bead, and some gold jump rings, and I made a trendy tassel necklace. Paired
with a gunmetal clutch and my nude heels, I’m ready for a night on the
town. Or I can dress it down with a chambray shirt and Converse sneaks.”

Metallic-Carissa-After 2

Metallic-Carissa-After 3

Metallic-Carissa-After 4

Metallic-Carissa-After 5

You can see all the details here on Carissa’s blog, Carissa Knits.


Miche from Buttons and Birdcages

“Last week I mentioned that I’ve been into festival fashion lately. To get a
little more specific, I’ve been really fascinated by Burning Man, which
basically just means be weird and a totally unconventional.

This weird and unconventional pull has me feeling increasingly challenged
in this contest because I know many people want to see outfits they would
actually wear, but whenever I sit at my sewing machine, I feel pulled in a
different direction. So this week I decided to honor that pull and see what
I came up with..


Shopping for metallic to refashion was pretty challenging because most
things that are metallic are already pretty hip (it’s a pretty hip
material). I went to 3 thrift stores before finding these possibilities and
while I wanted whatever I found to be gold, I was beyond thrilled to find
this amazing silver dress!

Once I found it, I had a pretty clear vision in my head. When I got home, I
almost immediately chopped the top part of the dress off and added button
closure, turning it into a maxi skirt. I removed the bottom and sleeves off
of the black dress, turning it into a sleeveless top. I used the extra
material from the black dress and purple metallic skirt to create a
reversible hood that can be worn with the metallic out, or the black side


Extra fabric was used to add little flourishes like the lace up part of the
top. I’m not going to Burning Man this year, but I am going to YOUtopia (a
smaller burn), and will be sure to wear this while I”m there :)”



Miche from Buttons and Birdcages


Susan from Second Chances by Susan:

“Metallic…my first thoughts leaned towards evening wear. I found several metallic
offerings amongst the discarded prom and bridesmaid dresses. But, since I had just
made a party dress, I couldn’t see a need for another one. In reality, my holiday
parties consist of banging pots and pans at midnight on New Year’s Eve with the
grandkids which, by the way, is the best! So, this week I opted for a more casual
metallic look. I also didn’t want to go over board with it so I kept the metallics
to mostly accents.

before_after Susan

I started with a sequined t-shirt. I really liked the metallic hue of these sequins
and thought the t-shirt would make a fun and simple skirt. And simple it was! It
was just a matter of cutting it out, stitching up the sides, and adding an elastic

skirt detail

I already had a bag of shower curtain hooks that I had picked up a while ago. I
added some leather cording, brass beads, and a gold chain. Several square knots
later and I had a chunky metallic necklace.

necklace detail

I could have stopped there, but I really thought a jacket would be a nice addition.
This, however, was not as simple as the skirt! After cutting away the bulky fleece
trim, shortening the length, adding darts, and taking in the side seams, it was
shaping up to be a fun little jacket. But, the edges needed finishing and the
jacket needed some metallic accents.

trees_looking up

I found a blouse that was not only the right color, but it was adorned with metal
snaps and studs…perfect! I cut away the collar, pocket flaps, cuffs, and front
band and added it all to the jacket.

jacket detail

jacket back

I can dress up with the skirt and jacket, or dress down with the jacket and jeans!

trees_hand on hip

full shot

If you would like to see the process, you can visit my blog, Second Chances by
Susan, where I will be posting it soon.

Thanks to everyone who was been following along, commenting, and voting! And,
thanks to Beth for another fun challenge! Good luck to all of the ladies and happy



Marissa from The Refash Stash

“This is what I love about this competition is that it forces me to get out of my
comfort zone and think way outside of the box! Metallic was something I wouldn’t
really pick on my own but now I don’t think I’ll shy away from it!

I was so lucky I scored this beautiful metallic formal dress! First, I made a
waistband out of 3 inch black elastic. (See where I’m going with this…skirt!) The
dress had a black lining under the metallic fabric so I used that to make a skirt.
Then I cut 4 strips of metallic fabric to make a layered skirt. Instead of hemming
each layer of metallic fabric I used black bias tape! I think it really defines the
layers too!

Marissa 1

Next: The Top!
I had a solid black t-shirt, in stock! I removed the top decorative layer of the
original dress. I cut the t-shirt at an angle to make a one-shouldered top and then
sewed on the decorative piece from the metallic dress.

Marissa 2

Lastly: An accessory!
I had left over fabric from the top of the original metallic dress…but what to do
with it?
I made a wristlet! I sewed the scrap into a square, added a button loop and wrist
loop made of black bias tape scraps and sewed it together with silver metallic
thread! Then added a hot pink button as an accent!

Marissa 3

Marissa 4

Marissa 5

Marissa 6

Marissa 7

Happy Refashioning!!!”

The Refash Stash


Mary from Thrifty Chic

“Metallic? Thinking about this, I needed to find something to incorporate this into my wardrobe without looking like a cheesy episode of “Lost in Space” (Dating myself here)or someone who had never left disco behind??? It had to be simple, classic, and fit into my life. This sweater was a $3.00 Goodwill find and made of lurex yarn. It is a classic shape with a perfect fit, but VERY see through. I had to jazz it up! When I saw it, I knew the plan immediately!



The plan was to use some off white cotton yarn and weave in stripes with a tapestry needle.
It created a great chevron pattern!

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Screen Shot 2016-08-09 at 8.35.24 AM

The under bodice was created from an old wrestling costume I made for one of the boys years ago for Halloween!
Such memories this one gave me. ☺”

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Screen Shot 2016-08-09 at 8.35.36 AM





Mary from Thrifty Chic


Gema from Sequins and Slippers

“Hi All!

I had something COMPLETELY different in mind when I started my Metallic
project; in fact, it was only in the final moments I changed my mind, and
went with an alternative plan! I was wanting to avoid looking ‘cheap’
(which I think is a danger when working with metallic/shiny fabrics) – and
found lots of ‘disco’ inspiration to fire me up… you might be able to
tell in the results, haha!

Starting with a peplum top I’ve had for AGES in my wardrobe… it has a
small amount of sparkle on the shoulders, and seemed to work well with the
second part in the outfit…

top before

I went for ‘subtle’ for half of the look, as the bottom half was going to
be DISCO-TASTIC! So, here’s the ‘gun metal silver’ sequined top I found in
a charity shop…

skirt before ON 2

And, after a fair bit of styling, sewing, cropping, and fixing… whilst
breaking six needles in the process… (*argh!)

sequins breaking needle

I ended up with an outfit I’m excited to wear, and will continue to be,
come rain or shine, winter or summer, indoors or outdoors… let’s face it,
no-one can lose me, wearing this…!


Honestly, it even glows when I’m in the shade… I also like the thought of
pairing the skirt with a pair of Converse, and a sloppy jumper (I’ve seen
that look so many times, and wanted to copy it!).

Y’know, sometimes having a rather large behind isn’t such a bad

AFTER Behind

I can’t WAIT to see what all these talented ladies have produced this

Hopefully see you next week!!

before and after

Big Sequin Smiles!

Gema x”

Sequins and Slippers


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Refashion Runway All Stars: The Winner of the Velvet Challenge

Thanks so much to everyone who voted for their favorite velvet refashion last week! And thanks to all of the talented and creative contestants for their hard work to compete in this “friendly” sewing competition.:)

Our winner this week is………

Susan from Second Chances by Susan!!!!

 Before_After Susan

steps with smile Susan 6

Congratulations Susan!! Such a beautiful dress!

It was definitely too close to call to send someone “home” this week. There were three people within 1 vote of each other. So I’m happy to say that all of these women will be competing again this week in the Metallic Challenge. And I can’t wait for you to see what they’ve been doing! So many clever ways to interpret metallic. You’re going to be so impressed.

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Refashion Runway Season Four: Velvet Sew Alongs

A big thank you to everyone who sewed along with us this week!!


A few seasons ago, Molly sewed along with us and we were all so impressed. We are thrilled to find out she has started her own blog.

It’s called Molly Made It and I hope you’ll go over and check it out, she’s a very talented seamstress.

Here’s Molly’s Sew Along:

She started with this:


And turned it into this:




Thanks for sewing along with us this week, Molly!


Laura from Accidental Seamstress ,who you recognize from Refashion Runway: Season Three and is also one of our judges, sewed along with us this week, too.

I think she looks amazing in her new dress!


When I told her how much I loved the flattering sleeves on her dress, she told me she wouldn’t have been able to make those sleeves without the cap
sleeve tutorial from my book, The Refashion Handbook.

Well, that certainly brightened my day!!!:)




Thanks Laura for sewing along with us this week!


Stine, all the way from Denmark, sewed along with us this week, too!

She went above and beyond the call of duty and refashioned two things. You can see her entire refashion here on her blog.



FotorCreated (1)


Thank you so much for sewing along with us this week, Stine, it was a pleasure to meet you.:)


Elizabeth from Elizabeth Made This loves the 80’s style and combined a couple of shirts to create some cool “Athleisure Wear”.

You can see how she made it over on her blog.




Thanks, Elizabeth, we always enjoy seeing what you create!


The creative Vicky Myers from Vicky Myers Creations found time in her busy summer schedule sew along with us this week, too.

black velvet skirt refashion

refashion runaway shortened and gathered skirt

Thanks so much for sewing along with us, Vicky! You look great in your new skirt!!


Claudia from Sew Lil Time combined a couple of outdated dresses and created a more modern and flattering dress this week.




Love those lace sleeves, Claudia. Thanks so much for sewing along with us!


Charlotte from New Zealand had a cute little muse and created a fun girls dress this week.



Super cute dress and model, Charlotte! Thanks for sewing along with us!!


If you’d like to sew along with this season’s Refashion Runway Challenges, send a before and after picture of your projects to

Stay tuned tomorrow because the winner of the Velvet Challenge will be announced and the voting on the Metallic Challenge will begin. I can’t wait for you to see what everyone has been creating this week!!

If you haven’t had a chance to vote for your favorite velvet refashion, click here.


500 X 400 banner

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How to Sew a Cute and Durable Laptop Cover

We interrupt this season of Refashion Runway to bring you a cute back-to-school project…

Your computer is one of your most prized possessions, and it deserves a case that’s as stylish as you are. Make “back to school” more fun, or your work week more fashionable, by turning your computer case into one of your most chic accessories. This DIY sheath has a zipper that’ll keep your computer clean and safe as it rides around in your bag or on the seat of your car. Bonus? You don’t need to worry if some coffee or pizza spills on your cover during one of those late-night work sessions — just throw it into the wash and it’ll be as good as new. Now that’s how to stay on-trend and stress-free with technology.




Click here to find out how to make this cute laptop cover.

And if you haven’t had a chance to vote for your favorite Velvet Refashion, click here.

Happy Sewing!


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Refashion Runway Season Four: Meet the Judges

I showed up and I didn’t know a soul. To be honest, it was a bit frightening. Wandering through those long halls alone, I wondered if I’d ever feel comfortable there.

But then SHE came strutting down the upper hallway of Central Elementary wearing a jumpsuit from Indonesia covered in sunflowers and little did I know that my world would never be the same.

Meet Linda:

Fashionista extraordinaire, couture seamstress, my stunt double (especially when I need a shot of a great pair of gams) and one of my best friends. She has lovingly volunteered to be one of the Judges this season.


Linda doesn’t have a blog, but if she did, she would totally blow you away with her outfit color choices, jewelry, and combinations of her outfits of the day.



She even does quite a bit of refashioning herself. Check out this cool rug she made from old jeans:

Que Linda Recycled Denim23

Thanks so much Linda, for agreeing to be one of the judges this season!


Now meet the inspiring Laura Hargrove from The Accidental Seamstress. And I say inspiring for two reasons. One, she creates beautiful refashions and two, after following her own dieting mantra of making smart choices and keeping her own weekly goals, an energetic and happy Laura dropped 100 pounds and kept it off. WOW!

You might recognize her from Refashion Runway: Season Three.



Thank you , Laura!


Meet Sylvia Levkova who comes to us all the way from Bulgaria. I love how she calls herself Queen Sylvia! Now that’s confidence.:) She learned to sew on her Great Grandmother’s 1935 Singer and has been thrifting and refashioning since she was a kid. Check out her blog, Her Kitschy Majesty.

You might recognize her from Refashion Runway: Season Three, too.




Thank you, Sylvia!


If you’ve been following Refashion Runway since Season One then you might recognize another one of our judges, Barbara.

“Hello, I’m Barbara, AKA Zibergirl of . I
presently work part time for as a consultant, editor,
and customer service person. Earlier this year we launched a sister site, It’s an international social sewing site, with tons of features. I also
run a small business from my home providing sewing lessons, custom sewing, and
alterations. I’ve sewn practically all of my life, so I consider myself an expert
when it comes to construction, technique, and the use of all different types of
sewing machines. For fun, I love to make clothes for myself and family, and quilt.
Recently, I joined a huge online quilting group called The Splendid Sampler. I’m
provided with two quilt block designs each week so at the end of the year, I will
have made 100 blocks! I love learning new things and quilting has been on my bucket
list for awhile. I’m a big fan of upcycling and repurposing previously worn garments
and other textile items so I’m anxious to see what the All Stars will make during
during Season Four of Refashion Runway. Thank you, Beth, for the honor of helping to
judge the contest!”




Thank you, Barbara!


Well, there you have it. These judges definitely have their work cut out for them.

In addition to on-line public voting, they will be scoring the contestants as well. The on-line votes will count for half of the score and the judges scores will count for the other half. A winner will be determined by combining the two scores.
The judges will give each of the competitors a score of 1-10 (1 being the lowest and 10 the highest score) on the following areas:

Following the challenge

For a perfect score of 50 points.


If you haven’t had a chance to vote for your favorite velvet refashion yet, click here.

And be sure to check out this Refashion Runway Prize Sponsor:

Save on Sewing &amp; Quilting Supplies at CreateForLess!

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Refashion Runway Season Four: Velvet Challenge- Time to Vote for Your Favorite

I’m sorry, but did you say velvet?

Yes. I. Did!


I’ve always been a closet velvet fan and I’m so thrilled that velvet is getting the love it deserves lately. I can’t wait for colder temperatures so I can drape myself in velvet especially the perfect blue velvet dress I’m going to refashion for our Christmas party.

Apparently, all the cool designers like Oscar de la Renta are putting velvet down the runways this fall, including our cool Refashion Runway designers.

Let’s see what they’ve been up to this week and don’t forget to vote for your favorite at the bottom of this post.


Michel from Buttons and Birdcages

“As time has passed, I’ve noticed my style has changed as well. When I first
started refashioning, I was really into the super retro 50’s look.
Nowadays, I lean more toward the 60’s/70’s/boho look. And since moving to
California I’ve been *especially* in love with the festival style that
seems to surround the Southern part of the state.

Velvet is such a fun fabric with a really unique look. At first I was
nervous I wouldn’t find anything that inspired me, but as soon as I came
across this thrift-store robe I had an immediate flash of what to do with
it. I removed the sleeves, took it in on the sides and in the back,
shortened the whole thing, and then used the sleeve cuffs to adorn the leg
covers I created using fabric from the bottom of the robe.


I love this piece now because I can wear it different ways depending upon
where I’m going/how I’m feeling. Definitely excited to wear this one out
this weekend:)







Looking forward to seeing what everyone else came up with, thanks again for
organizing this again!


 Carissa from Carissa Knits.

“I felt like this 90s crushed velvet dress was too much of a good thing. I
loved the color and the strappy back detailing, but it was too tight and
too long for my taste. So I decided to cut it in half and make two separate
garments from it. I removed the shoulder pads and sleeves and chopped the
skirt off right at the waist. Then I attached a sheer polka dot yoke from a
refashion years ago. I also swapped out the polka dot collar for a velvet
Peter Pan style collar, made from the sleeves of my original dress.


Velvet-Carissa-After 1A

Velvet-Carissa-After 1B

Velvet-Carissa-After 1C

For the velvet torso, I finished off the armhole edges. Then I used more
fabric from the sleeves to create a bottom band for my new cropped top. It
pairs perfectly with a high-waisted floral skirt that got a quick chop job
to shorten it a bit. I’m so looking forward to wearing both of these when
it’s *not* over 100 degrees out there!”

Velvet-Carissa-After 2A

Velvet-Carissa-After 2B

Velvet-Carissa-After 2C


Jen from Diary of a MadMama:

“I was so excited when I found out that Beth was hosting another season of
Refashion Runway, and ecstatic when she asked me to participate.

I started out with this huge velvet dress and this floral print top (also
They definitely weren’t very flattering on me as is.



I used a portion of the black dress to make into a skirt and using a
leftover piece of elastic from a previous refashion, connected it to the
shirt at the waistline.

I wanted to make a Peter Pan collar for the shirt, so I traced from the
middle of the neckline to the side shoulder seam and then drew a Peter Pan
shaped collar, freehand.
Using my newly drawn pattern, I cut out some black velvet from the top
scrap of my dress, as well as some interfacing and black and white,
polka-dot cotton material for the backing.
After sewing the pieces together and then attaching them to the shirt, I
tacked the collar down here and there to keep it in place.
I really like how the black collar adds a bit of panache.
Once the collar was finished, I shortened the sleeves to 3/4-length.



I love how comfy this dress is and I know I’ll get a lot of wear out of it
once the temperatures drop. (It was over 90-degrees when I had these
pictures taken! Phew!)

If you want to see more of this refashion, head on over to my blog, Diary
of a MadMama



end collage _ Fotor


 Gema from Sequins and Slippers


I still can’t believe I’m part of the ‘All Stars’ line-up! Such incredible
women in this year’s edition – and I just *can’t wait* to see what everyone
comes up with!
For the first challenge, ‘velvet’, I struggled to find any garments in the
shops to work with – and ended up using something I made myself for a
wedding, back in November…

This one! CROPPED

Although it was ‘fit for purpose’ back then, I wasn’t sure I’d wear it
again, so this was the perfect excuse to cut into it!

I removed the huge cowl neck, and bodice, played around with all sorts of
looks (I really wasn’t sure WHAT I was doing!), and in the end feel like I
came up with something summer-y. And 1940’s -ish… or is that just me?

front close up

I made spaghetti straps, added floral decoupage to the neckline, and
tailored the bodice to be more close fitting. In keeping the high-lo hem,
there’s a lot of movement to the dress now… it’s ready to dance in
now…. anyone? No? OK… I’ll just dance with Rod then!:)

rod making me laugh

I loved this challenge, even if I found it a little tricky; the thought of
all these fab women doing exactly the same thing, at the same time, spurred
me on!

Big velvet hugs,
Gema x”



Susan from Second Chances by Susan

“I was so excited and honored when Beth contacted me to participate in this season of
Refashion Runway! As she mentioned in an earlier post, we are in the middle of a
new home project. Actually, we are in the beginning stages….excavating a hillside
for the past several weeks. So, sewing is a welcome change from my current job of
scooping and dumping dirt with our tractor. And when I say dirt, I mean MOUNTAINS
of dirt. My husband excavates the dirt and rocks faster than I can move them. But,
you’re not here to listen to me rant about piles of dirt!

I was even more excited when Beth announced that the first challenge was velvet. I
have had a black strapless velvet dress in my refashion closet for awhile now. I
always thought it would make a good holiday party dress. The problem was, though,
that the holidays were always so busy I never got around to it. Thanks to this
challenge, I am now prepared for this years parties!

I started with a black velvet dress that had a wonderful embossed design around the
hemline, a sequined blouse, and a velveteen collar leftover from a previous
I married the two pieces together after taking in the blouse to make it more fitted.


Before_After Susan

I added the collar to the neckline and then finished it off with a beaded brooch.

I cut off the lower 6” of lining and replaced it with cream colored satin to make
the cut out detail really stand out.

leaning against train Susan 2

sitting Susan 3

looking down at skirt Susan 4

I even used the lower half of the blouse to make a matching sequined clutch.

I accessorized with a a beaded flower ring, pearls, and velveteen heels.

skirt close-up Susan 5

By the way, this is a far cry from what I wear when working on the tractor!

A more detailed tutorial will soon be posted on my blog, Second Chances By Susan.

Good luck to all the ladies, and happy sewing!”

steps with smile Susan 6


Mary from Thrifty Chic

“Hi Everyone!
I am thrilled to be participating in this season of Refashion Runway!
Velvet? I have to say that I have NEVER used it or worn it before. When I was asked to participate in this contest, I had to think about what kind of velvet I would wear. I never refashion anything that I don’t actually wear as it would just take up space in my life. It had to be functional. I found this great velvet dress at Goodwill, but it was a 1X and way too matronly!. BUT, I could picture it as a cocktail top for a holiday party worn with jeans. I don’t have the lifestyle to wear formal dresses, so this is what it had to be! Reshaping the bodice to show more shoulder and fit properly was not that hard, but reshaping the skirt took hours!!! I can’t wait for the holidays to wear it!!! I had to take a separate picture so you could see how the garment catches the light! Below you can see the before and after.”





Marisa from The Refash Stash

“Hey readers! I have always thought of velvet as a very fancy fabric, only to be worn
for holidays and special occasions. For this challenge I went with a sort of
Victorian theme, which was actually by accident but that’s the way it came out!
I started with 1 pants suit and 2 dresses all in velvet!


I replaced the top of the
pants suit with the top of a maroon velvet dress. I opened the pants seams of the
pants suit and inserted a panel of the patterned velvet dress.



Next Accessories:
I used a black velvet skirt to make into a small drawstring handbag. I used a
starburst stitch to decorate my new handbag.

I made a velvet cape to pair with my Victorian style dress. I cut off the sleeves of
the jacket and sewed up the arm holes. I then added the patterned velvet material to
the collar. Lastly, I added a frog closure to the front to fasten my cape.




Sort of Downton Abbey-esque, is it not?! I am actually very happy with the way it
turned out. My happy accident!

image1 (2)
Happy Refashioning!!!


OK, now it’s your turn,

Vote for your favorite designer by clicking next to their name and then scrolling to the bottom of the poll and clicking on the vote button.

Accuquilt Sale

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How to Make an Easy Breezy Caftan for Your Summer Beach Cover Up

It’s true what they say: Life IS better in flip flops…

…and sunglasses, and hats, and caftans.:)

Yes, easy-breezy caftans.

With just two yards of fabric, you too can make this summery, beach cover-up in less than 30 minutes. Click here to find out how.


Doesn’t Rylee look great in it!!


She was such a good sport to head down to the creek on her lunch break to model this cute caftan for us.




Work it Rylee!!!


Behind the scenes…. crackin’ each other up:)



I felt a bit like the Paparazzi after the photo shoot when Cooper was helping Rylee walk through the water in her flip flops. (I think she totally looks like a movie star:) )


Plus my heart just swells watching my son be a gentleman.


Click here to see the full instructions to make this adorable caftan.


Oh yes, and the fun fabric was Paradise Palms from Spoonflower.


For more refashion and sewing inspiration click here.

Happy Sewing!



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