How To Get New Work Clothes For Free (Almost) :)

Upcycled Gray Silk ruffle dress

It’s fun for me to see the comments people write when they pin pictures from The Renegade Seamstress to their boards on Pinterest. Often times my head is swelling from the nice things they write. The biggest thrill for me comes when I see comments like, “She makes me think I could do this” or “I want to learn how to sew” or my personal favorite, “I want this woman for my best friend”. Because, you see, the two main goals for this blog is to one, inspire you to try these things and two, connect with other folks who love to do what IΒ love to do.

The other day, there was another comment, that got my attention. Ashley wrote “This woman is so creative when it comes to refashioning clothes!! I’m on such a tight budget right now but in desperate need of some new work clothes…I think it’s time to break out the sewing machine again!”

It made me think of how refashioning isn’t just about cutting up t shirts and it isn’t just about creating costumes for parties. Β It made me think about how much money I used to spend on clothes for work. It made me think about how much time I used to spend at the mall trying things on, getting frustrated and feeling bad about myself because things didn’t fit right.

But as I found out it doesn’t have to be that way.

Upcycling thrift store clothes can be a great way to build up your work wardrobe without spending much money. So many of us are on tight budgets these days. So instead of spending all that time in the fitting room feeling bad, I have been having the time of my life being creative with a hobby that not only saves me money, but makes me feel good in my own skin again, creating clothes that actually fit, are comfortable, and I can wear to work.

Take this long, gray, silk dress I found at the Goodwill last fall for $2.99. I wouldn’t wear this to work in a million years. But after making a few simple changes, I want to wear it everyday!

Upcycled Gray Silk ruffle dress

Upcycled Gray Silk ruffle dress

Upcycled Gray Silk ruffle dress

Cut the bottom part of the skirt to desired length, saving the middle piece to use for the ruffle.

Upcycled Gray Silk ruffle dress

Here, I cut a quarter inch piece of elastic, stretched to fit my waist comfortably. I then sewed it to the waistline seam allowance, stretching it to fit as I sewed.

Upcycled Gray Silk ruffle dress

Upcycled Gray Silk ruffle dress

Upcycled Gray Silk ruffle dress

Upcycled Gray Silk ruffle dress

Upcycled Gray Silk ruffle dress

Upcycled Gray Silk ruffle dress

Upcycled Gray Silk ruffle dress

Upcycled Gray Silk ruffle dress

Upcycled Gray Silk ruffle dress

Upcycled Gray Silk ruffle dress

Upcycled Gray Silk ruffle dress

Silk ruffle dress

Upcycled Gray Silk ruffle dressΒ Silk ruffle dress

Upcycled Gray Silk ruffle dress

Enjoy your day!!


For more refashion tutorials click here:

Refashion Tutorials1

or here:

Being Zhenya's skirt refashion

About The Renegade Seamstress

I'm a busy wife, mom, grandma, and teacher who loves to create. I've joined the refashion scene and I 'd like to share and connect with all those talented and creative people out there doing similar things.
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44 Responses to How To Get New Work Clothes For Free (Almost) :)

  1. Wow, Beth! Your vision for this dowdy dress was impressive! Congratulations on such a successful refashion πŸ™‚

  2. lucindalines says:

    Wish I could have that sort of vision. I am working on it.

  3. BEAUTIFUL! I’ll bet your teacher colleagues can’t WAIT to see what you’re wearing each day, Beth! πŸ™‚

  4. I just love how you have made the seemingly impossible feel so possible to so many women. Do you have a flickr group?

  5. I am so impressed! This might be your best one yet!

  6. BeingZhenya says:

    Love it! And ruffles are always a win!

  7. Nellie says:

    Amazing!!! I love ruffles. Someone just gave me a couple of long shapeless dresses. i am defiitley going to give this a try. Thanks!

    • Thanks, Nellie! I can’t seem to get enough ruffles. There are so many different kinds to try! I love how it can add just enough detail to clothes to make them special.
      I’d love to see your dress when you finish!
      Happy sewing!

  8. you took a doubty boring piece of sewn fabric up to to super cute chic wardrobe staple! fabulous! great way to use something perfectly good (like 100% silk fabric) and make it useable! πŸ™‚

  9. Laraine says:

    I never liked the hassle of altering clothes, but I find your work so inspiring that I’m looking at all my misfits with new eyes, and enjoying it

  10. This is just fantastic! Possibly my favourite I think πŸ˜€
    It is so nice to hear you are able to reach out and inspire so many people in such a positive way. keep it up πŸ˜€ xXx

    • Thanks, Hannah! Ruffles make anything better in my opinion! It does encourage me to continue publishing tutorials when so many people appreciate them. I have found this on line sewing community to be so supportive and kind.
      Hope you have a wonderful Sunday!

  11. Amy Jo says:

    I love your reasons for refashioning and also for sharing your work on line. Keep the inspiration coming, please!
    Amy Jo

  12. CherryPix says:

    What a great ‘save’ for otherwise wasted silk! Bet it feels as lovely to wear as it looks.

  13. Jo H. says:

    Lovely – so pretty! I’m glad you are going to continue to share your talent. You’ve been a source of inspiration and instruction for me, too. Thank you!

  14. Love love love the dress!!

  15. erin says:

    Love your “can-do” attitude and yours is a dress that I would happily wear to work! Thanks for the inspiration πŸ™‚

  16. Christa says:

    Thank you so much for giving all the things I have in my closet a new life! Now when I go out to the Goodwill I see everything so differently and the possibilities are endless. I agree…thanks for the inspiration!

  17. baum says:

    wow, that’s quite amazing! I would never have thought that the two versions were in anyway related!:-)

  18. Beth,

    I couldn’t agree more. I also have been having “the time of my life” doing this. This is such a great thing for women to learn. In better times, I used to spend so much time and money in the mall. I tell my husband. ” Every time I complete a project consider that I have saved approximately $30,” sometimes more. I don’t even miss going shopping in the mall! The best thing is you can be on trend this way and no one will have the exact same thing as you. More of my teacher friends are beginning to take their sewing machines out and it makes me happy. One does not need to break the bank to look good!

  19. Rhonda says:

    Beth, I love what you do. I scroll through your blog day dreaming, wishing I could do this kind of stuff. You’re so talented.

  20. Pingback: Finished Object: Polka Dotty Red Velvet Dress | TheSeedsof3

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