The Winner of the Kentucky Derby Hat Challenge: Refashion Runway Season Five

A big Thank You to everyone who voted, encouraged and supported these talented and creative designers this week. And much obliged to the judges who took the time to score each of the entries on: Following the challenge, Originality, Craftsmanship, Design, & Presentation.

I know that you’ve been champing at the bit 🙂 to find out the winner of this week’s Refashion Runway challenge, Kentucky Derby Hat, so I won’t make you wait any longer.

The 4th place winner this week is


The third place winners this week are

Beki Biesterfelt from Beki’s Custom Sewing

and Julie Kong from Sugarcane Sweet Designs

The 2nd place winner is

Peggy Latta from Heirloom Textile Art

and 1st place in this Run For the Roses is

Deana Budgell from djewelss

A big round of applause goes to these wonderful designers for bringing us their best game each week. You all have thoroughly entertained, wowed and inspired us with your unbelievable refashions, beautiful photos, and inspirational designs.

Next up:

The overall winners of Refashion Runway: Season Five

Stay tuned…..

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Time to Vote: Kentucky Derby Hat- Refashion Runway Season Five

The hats, the dresses, the horses, the mint juleps, oh, how I’d love to head to Churchill Downs for the Kentucky Derby someday.

The Derby has been referred to as The Greatest Two Minutes in Sports, but not for these designers.

NOPE, not for them.

Hours and hours have been put into their beautiful Kentucky Derby hats for you to enjoy in this week’s challenge. To help your favorite designer cross the finish line, scroll to the bottom of the post (or click here) to vote.

And they’re off……..


Peggy Latta from Heirloom Textile Art

When looking on Pinterest and searching Google, I saw many outlandish, garish and quite enormous Derby Hats. It just didn’t seem quite right so I reached out to millinery enthusiast Jody DeFord of @redsshoediaries. Jody is always listed among Indianapolis’ best dressed, continually stepping out with impeccable fashions. Here’s her esteemed advice for a perfect Kentucky Derby Hat:

  • The hat should always be deliberately coordinated with a full ensemble, with details that echo and/or complement each other. Small details with repeated elements in both hat and dress or shoes or small clutch/handbag really pull a look together. Elegance and sophistication is key.
  • The most overlooked but in my opinion one of the most important things is that a Derby hat must be interesting to look at and finished from ALL angles. 
  • The best hats are constructed using couture sewing techniques, rather than glue. 
  • The weight and balance of the finished hat should also be considered from the outset. Most couture hats are designed to sit at an angle (which is also generally most flattering) and some have a very pronounced tilt. This makes weight and balance critical for stability and comfort.
  • In no event should the overall width be wider than the shoulders of the wearer. Plenty of people don wildly oversized hats, but it looks kitschy rather than elegant. It’s also super irritating to other people who have to dodge out of the way in doorways, etc, to avoid being struck by a garishly large hat.
  • I personally like a mix of textures some small but interesting details (such as beading or incorporation of a vintage piece of jewelry) that gives the viewer more to see the longer they look at a hat. I also think elements like this make a hat stand out as one-of-a-kind and not something mass produced.

Keeping Jody’s advice in mind, I set out to create my Kentucky Derby Ensemble. I started with a coral, plum and apricot straw tote bag. Other materials included a wire basket, garden fencing, a book (pages and hard cover), a little girl’s tutu, a butterfly print skirt, vintage rhinestone pins, a lace dress and a knit dress.

I wanted my challenge entry to be more than just a hat (noting Jody’s advice) and with this being the final week, I decided to take one more opportunity to restyle a garment for my wardrobe.  I upsized a beautiful coral lace dress incorporating a flippy hemline from a coral knit dress. I also thought the elements of my ensemble should mean something. This is the symbolism you will find in my Kentucky Derby Outfit:

  • ROSES (the Derby is nicknamed the “Run for the Roses”)
  • BOOK PAGES (flowers and leaves) AND COVER (handbag) refer loosely to the term “to make book” or place bets. 
  • BUTTERFLIES mean “good luck” (for the weather, the horses, a safe race, your bet….)

As you look over my hat, you will find beautiful, hand crafted, color-washed book page roses and leaves nestled into the plum tutu skirt that forms the upper brim.  Beaded butterflies flit about the roses. From another angle you will find vintage pins from my Mother’s collection. And if you look really closely, you might find a bumblebee pin!

In keeping with the book symbolism, I repurposed the hard cover from the book and created a handbag for little necessities. It too is embellished in a similar…but different…fashion to the hat.

When I started this journey, I promised myself, my family, my friends and my followers that I would not leave one speck of creativity on the table…and I haven’t! I’m very proud of what I have shared with you each week. Thanks for following along.  




Julie Kong from Sugarcane Sweet Designs


As I glanced over at my hat project today I was hoping all the pieces would just put themselves together.  I thought if I stared at it long enough it would all make sense and come together.  I knew in order to create a stand out derby hat, I had to create controlled chaos. Okay, Mr. Hat, lets do this.  First of all, let me thank my creative friend Vickie Powers.  She found me an amazing beige hat at the American Cancer Society.  A big thank you to Stephanie Dahlberg for donating her no longer wanted floppy hat.  Also, Thank you Merlynn for helping me make adorable paper flowers.  You really are a master of paper.

As you can see, this hat is a combination of two hats.  The hat was adorned with hand made flowers that I made from sheer fabric.  Bright feathers added just the right amount of FLAMBOYANCE.   Once again I used broken pieces of jewelry and a pair of clip on earrings for some sparkle.  Now the paper used in the flowers has been recycled from discarded books.  As you know, I’m a school librarian.  Unfortunately, we discard a lot of books due to damage.  We shouldn’t  throw the books away.  We should reuse them!  Hey, lets cut the petals out from the pages of those books and make flowers.  Lets go crazy and make lots of flowers!  The students in the library agreed!   I think we’re going to decorate the library with the rest of them!   Now I’m not sure if you realize it but this hat is reversible!  Fun times!!  One day I can wear it to the Kentucky Derby.  The next day I can turn it around, so the paper flowers are in the front. and wear it to work!!  Yes, I am going to wear it to work.  I must find a book about the Kentucky Derby to read to the kids!!

The dress used in the picture is an upcycled garment.  It was originally a slip and a crocheted  tablecloth.  It has been adorned with antique lace plus new lace.  All pieces have been tea dyed.

WOW is all is have to say.  What a ride this has been.  Making something new and creative every week has been exhilarating but challenging.  Then to end it all with the Kentucky Derby hat. Wow, wow, wow!!!   I hope you’ve enjoyed this ride with me.  I’m going to miss seeing what all the other contestants create.  You all did an amazing job!  Such creativity!!!



Beki Biesterfelt from Beki’s Custom Sewing

I’ve never made a hat shaped on a hat block . . . Until now!!
Supplies I used:
*wash away stabilizer
* odd & ends of rayon, metallic and decorative threads
* tyvek mailers
* leftover acrylic paints
* found turkey feathers
* natural dyed silk cocoons
* scrap of silk fabric

Threads were sandwiched between 2 circles of wash away stabilizer.

I machine quilted the thread sandwich to hold everything in place.

My makeshift hat block . . . A bird bath and bowl taped together.

The wash away was partially rinsed out. The gooey threads were shaped on the “hat block” to dry.

I painted a few tyvek mailers with acrylic paints, cut out large flower shapes and shrunk with my steam iron.

Embellished with found turkey feathers, tyvek flowers, natural dyed silk cocoons and a silk band I made from a scrap leftover from my dress.

Finished hat!!



Yes!!!! We made it to the final challenge! I must admit this was a scary one for me at first, since I have never been to the Derby and never made a hat before.  Now that I have the hats, maybe I will put the Derby on my bucket list.
My inspiration for this challenge came from the British style fascinators and my favorite celebrity Derby hats.  I used everyday household materials to make the hats ( place mat, paper plate, cardboard, felt, luffa, and hot glue) I used the felt and paper plates to make the flowers and pink luffa to make the veil of the pink hat. Once I started researching, I was inspired by many looks and could not decide on one, so I made three hats!!! ( after all,  it is the final challenge, so I though why not go big right?).  The Red/Fuscia hat was inspired by Kate Middleton’s much photographed red-on-red ensemble (of all her many beautiful fascinators, her red ones are my favorite).  The yellow hat was inspired by what Amal Clooney wore to the  Royal Wedding.  I absolutely love her style. The white hat was inspired by the hat Kim K wore to the KY Derby. I thought it was fresh and modern and looked great on her.  I made  two refashioned dresses to complete the look of the yellow and fuscia hats.  I hope you guys enjoy the result.
This has been a great experience.  I have learned a lot from each contestant and I have improved my sewing skills by trying new things.  Thank you to everyone who went on this sewing journey with us and cheered us on every step of the way.  Thanks to my fellow sewists and designers for challenging me every week, I learned a lot from each of you. And last but not least, thank you Beth for creating this platform and promoting creativity. Sew on ladies!


Michelle Paganini from Paganoonoo


Sonya Blackstone from She’s So Creative

For the Kentucky Derby Hat challenge, I decided to go with a fascinator instead of a hat. I didn’t have anything made from sinamay laying around here (nor could I find it at thrift stores), but I did have a lot of leftover pieces from the wedding dress I used for the Round 3 Faux Fur project! The liner was perfect for the base because it was lightweight and semi-sheer. I also had a red button up that I had bought (but never used) for Round 1, so I used that to make roses to represent the rose garland given to the winner!

I actually designed this hat around a dress my model has, so I decided to dye the white fabric pink to match her dress (and shoes!), but I ended up having to model it myself (red dress to the rescue!) I’m so glad I dyed it pink, it really adds that perfect “pop”!

I also had a lot of silk flowers laying around, since I buy them as photo props for my crochet patterns, so I was happy to have a purpose for them (I only use them in photos a couple of times each). I dyed two bundles of the white flowers pink to bring more pink into the finished piece.

I also used some floral wire and beaded some of the pearls from the wedding dress bodice onto them to give the “hat” a little more romance and visual texture. I added one pink flower to each tip to tie it together. I added one pink flower to each tip.

Last, but not least, I took one of my daughters toy horses and added it to the front. This was a whimsy addition, because that’s really more true to my style (I typically design “playful” and “whimsical”). Since the derby is all about horses, it just seemed right. Plus, I’ll just give the fascinator to my daughter to add to her dress-up box!


Marisa Glied from The Refash Stash

When I saw that Kentucky Derby Hat was on the last of the Refashion Runway challenges, I was ecstatic. Every year I refashion a hat to wear during my annual Kentucky Derby Party. My personal goal was to make it far enough into the competition to be able to make the Derby hat….and I made it!

I had this hat laying around since last year’s derby refashion. Plus every Derby hat needs a fashionable dress to match!

The Hat:

I grabbed some fabric spray paint (which is super fun to use) from JoAnn’s. I sprayed underneath the brim with the white paint and the whole outside with the rose gold paint (swoon!)

Over the years I have accumulated a basket FULL of faux flowers from Michaels, JoAnns, Hobby Lobby and even Dollar Tree! I took a look through my stash of faux flowers and found a few pieces that I think would tie my hat to my floral dress!

I added this beautiful pearl and sheer ribbon I also had stashed in my ribbon box!

While the white paint underneath the brim was still wet I laid the hat down on some white lace material I had and carefully cut the width of the hat out. Let that dry!

I cut 3 long pieces of this silver sparkle tulle and folded them accordion style and stitched the ends together.

Now to fire up the hot glue gun! I began piecing my hat arrangement together. First some pink cattails and the silver sparkle tulle.

Some feathers and blue flowers.

Roses to match the dress material.

Lastly, I finished up adding the flowers and leaves. I always like to make my arrangements on the back of the hat.

The Dress:

I removed the sleeves and cut the dress at the waistline.

The front of the dress had buttons, which I removed and stitched together the front seams. Then took the sides in and cropped it short (bold move for myself)!

Since the Kentucky Derby is a spring sport, what better way than to celebrate spring fashion than with a wrap skirt! The original dress came with was matching sash. I sewed a casing at the top of the dress to fit the original sash. On one side of the dress, I made a buttonhole, which will be used to thread the sash through so it can be tied together.

Hey Y’All it’s Derby Time! (Not really, it’s February and 18 degrees outside Burr!)

I paired my hat and dress with these vintage shoes that were my mother’s wedding shoes and then my wedding shoes 🙂

I told you making Derby hats is my most favorite thing! Here are my past hats and now my most current hat!


Deana Budgell from djewelss

Knowing this is the last challenge it’s somewhat bittersweet. I’ve learned so much in the process- how to think outside the box, pushed myself to try new things, made some what I know will be lifelong friendships, trusted my instincts over influence of things surrounding me and have learned to sew better then I ever have before.
Thank you to Renegade Seamstress for hosting this fun competition. It’s been a blast.

Kentucky Derby Hats— First thought…girlfriends, pretty dresses, heels and BIG beautiful hats… and sweet “Blue” who stole the show 🐎 😄
What a fun challenge!!
I decided to use up some of the previous items that I was left with from previous challenges and a few new items from our local thrift store “The Attic”

After deciding what items will go with what hat and dress. I got out my gloves and spray paint and went to town. While waiting for paint to dry I started making the patterns for the dresses.

Hat- Anne of green gables basic straw hat, wire wreath, craft blocks, styrofoam balls, random flowers, gift box cover and leftover fabric from dress
Dress made from thrifted black and white dress pants.

Hat- straw salad bowl, placemats, random flowers, couch springs, craft blocks and thrifted dress from an new IG follower in SLT.
Dress made from a roll of fabric from the Attic and a zipper from couch cushion.

Hat— A lamp shade ,lots of thrifted flowers, fabric from lining of the Small- Large challenge, hat crown taken off a straw hat, craft blocks and some very special ribbon given to me by Ann Finnie ❤️
Dress— my best friend and I were pregnant at the same time and I used one of the dresses I made for our photo shoot.

Hat—A flattened Jcrew floppy hat, crafting mat, wire springs from couch, thrifted flowers and hating binding and bow used from straw hat.
Dress—Thrifted night gown from the Attic

Deon, you asked for something Camo…😃
Hat— Brim of another hat that I used in black hat, thrifted flowers, craft beads and blocks, placemats, wire from couch around brim and fabric from a maxi skirt and some extra that I had left over for lining.
Dress- made from previously owned maxi skirt.

Thank you for all your votes and encouragement during Refashion Runway.
Who knew so many unwanted things could be remade into such beautiful pieces of art.


WOW! Just WOW! Can I borrow a hat for my next Kentucky Derby party?

Now it’s your turn to vote. Click on the circle by your favorite designer then be sure to scroll to the bottom of the poll and click the VOTE button so your vote will be counted. This season you can vote once every 24 hours so feel free to vote for your favorite more than once or vote for more than one favorite. 🙂

If you don’t see the poll click here.

Here are links to the other challenges:

Week One: Statement Sleeves

Week Two: 1970’s

Week Three: Faux Fur

Week Four: Small to Large

Week Five: Southwest

Week Six: Kentucky Derby Hat

Happy Sewing!


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The Winner of the Southwest Challenge: Refashion Runway Season Five

Wow, everything from cowgirl hats, to lace, to turquoise and even airlines. It’s always so delightful to see how each designer interprets the challenge and puts their own spin on it. Last week was no exception.

You had a very hard to decision to make but you voted and the judges agreed.

Here are the winners of the Southwest Challenge:

Fourth Place goes to KT

Third place goes to Julie

Second place goes to Peggy

First place goes to Deana

Congratulations everyone!


No one is getting eliminated this week, so on to the last challenge:

Kentucky Derby Hats

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Faux Fur and Small to Large Sew Along: Amy Smith

Thank you, Amy Smith for sewing along with us in the Faux Fur and the Small to Large challenges.

“For the faux fur challenge, I spotted an awesome vest, dress and trousers that I have used to make a new funky dress. I used the front panel of the trousers and their fabulous pin tuck to create new self drafted side panels for the dress. I then used the waist band of the trousers and so be of the faux fur to create the short sleeves for the dress. A fur trim along the base of the dress added a little bit of length as well as complimenting the faux leather and patterned fabric of the dress. I kept the featured metal zip at the back.”

I loved the shape I was able to give the original dress by creating the side panels, even if it was one of my biggest challenges as I needed to create the pattern for the side panels myself.”


Beautiful job Amy! Your daughter looks great!


Amy Smith

“Here is my entry for the sew along challenge this week. A pair of children’s leggings that have become the sleeves for a top for my daughter. They were the perfect size for the Elliedactyl 5k top, and the waistband was used to make the neck band! I particularly love the black stripes down the sides of the arms!”

Another great idea, Amy!

Thank you for sewing along with us!!!


If you’d like to see Refashion Runway Season Five and vote for your favorite designers in the most recent challenge, Southwest, click here.

Here are links to the other challenges:

Week One: Statement Sleeves

Week Two: 1970’s

Week Three: Faux Fur

Week Four: Small to Large

Week Five: Southwest

Week Six: Kentucky Derby Hat

Happy Sewing!



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Time to Vote: Southwest Challenge- Refashion Runway Season Five

From Georgia O’Keefe to Frida Kahlo to the runways of Ralph Lauren to Coach and Brock Collection. Southwest styles have been making a comeback. As usual, the Refashion Runway challenge is wide open to interpretation and I can’t wait for you to see what the designers have created for you this week. You never know what to expect on Refashion Runway. 🙂

Have fun!!!

Then scroll to the poll at the bottom of the post to vote for your favorite designer. As most of you know, this season you can vote once every 24 hours so you can vote for more than one favorite or vote for your favorite more than once. 🙂



The Southwest theme was a nice mental escape from the winter but don’t be fooled by the sunny pics, its freezing out here. I decided to make a cotton summer dress that I always wanted but could not find in a store, so thanks Beth! I finally have my dress:) I found some white clothes made from similar shades of cotton ( who knew it would be challenging to match whites) I chose a high-low style to take out the bulk from the ruffles, which I made from the skirt fabric. I used elastic for the shoulder and sleeves. I made new sleeves out of the shirt fabric because the old sleeves were too narrow to use. wouldn’t be a complete SW outfit without boots! I had a pair of boots that were too big for my calves but I saw their potential. After the calves were reshaped they were bejeweled, voila! the boots are now cute and wearable.


Michelle Paganini from Paganoonoo


Peggy Latta from Heirloom Textile Art

. . . . . . . . . . .
SOUTHWEST. That’s it. Just southwest! Hmmm, southwest USA, southwest France, southwest Africa, southwest Asia??? It could be southwest-anywhere-in-the-world!
I chose USA southwest influences for my entry this week. I’ve always been drawn to the classic styling of Ralph Lauren’s western fashions so I started there and went over the top embellishing with lace, leather and rhinestones…inspired by Balmain, Marchesa and Alexander McQueen.
The showpiece of my entry is a tweed and faux leather jacket. Using the tweed jacket for texture, I deconstructed a champagne faux leather jacket and a bronze faux leather pillow. Lace pieces were harvested from tiered lace miniskirts. The faux leather scrollwork is embellished with amber rhinestones. In the over-the-top styling, there are double collars and double lapels, all accented with a variety of laces.
The lace blouse is a restyle using the sparkling lace from a strapless dress combined with lace from my collection for the sleeves. I upcycled a separating zipper for an on-trend front closure.
When thrifting, I found a damaged and too small lace skirt. By cutting out the damaged area, I used some of that lace to enlarge the waist and hipline. Using more of the tiered lace miniskirt, I replaced the damaged skirt section. Since the original lining was too small, I used a full-size bed sheet (lots of fabric!) in a champagne color as a replacement lining.
The finishing touch was to embellish my hat with rhinestones, feathers and buttons. And add the perfectly perfect thrifted belt!

Note: some of the items in the before photograph were not used. They have been marked out with a yellow X.


Julie Kong from Sugarcane Sweet Designs


Okay, so I just want to know, who hid all the southwestern clothing????? Aztec prints where are you? Was there a raid at the thrift stores? Is there a ban in my area on Southwestern looks? Apparently, I’lll have to create my own Southwestern look! Time to go shopping in my closet. Oh, I can use that tie dye scarf. It has the perfect colors. I can also use my old black lace cover up. Then there’s a shawl my friend Pam gave me. I can use the fringe from the shawl! Hey, and I have a brown cami. It’s amazing how my closet had all I needed.
This weeks look is more than Southwestern. I’ve added a twist of boho to it. The scarf became the skirt. The black lace cover up was cut up and used for the lace on the bottom of the skirt. The fringe was removed from the shawl and used on the skirt. Next I sewed trim and turquoise beads onto the cami. I used broken pieces of jewelry for the focal point. The black beaded flower was actually from my old worn out shoes. I just couldn’t throw them away. The flowers, that is, not the shoes. So I cut the flowers off and saved them. I was so glad I did. I sewed the jewelry and the flower together and what a surprise, upcycling magic happened!!!
Next, we have the turquoise belt. It was originally a hat band that I had made maybe 10 years ago. Yep, I had saved that too. It worked perfect as the belt.
Finally, onto the hat. I tied a piece of crocheted trim around it. The trim was cut off of a crocheted vest. The beaded hat band was made from discarded beads found at the Cancer Society Thrift shop.
Yep, and there you have it. My unique, one of a kind, Southwestern Boho Mama look. This look should be easy for you to recreate. You could even start with a long skirt and cut it off. Hey, I should have done that! Oh well, next time. Thanks for reading and voting. It’s been a lot of fun sharing my ideas with you. Thank you, to all of my friends who take the time to vote. It really means a lot to me. And a big thanks to Lori and Kenny Park for the cowboy hat!!

In the beginning, a knit scarf, shawl and black lace cover up will come together to create a Southwestern look.

Cutting up the lace cover up.

Cutting up the lace cover up.

My homemade pattern was a little to large for the amount of fabric available from the scarf. Hey, but that’s how things roll when you upcycle.

I added black trim and beading to the top to give it a Southwestern Boho look. I also switched out tops. I didn’t care for the black one in the previous picture.

Discarded jewelry and a beaded bow, from my old shoes, come together to form a focal point for the top.

Once again, Sparkles is the star!

Southwestern Boho Mama!


Beki Biesterfelt from Beki’s Custom Sewing

I was inspired by the colors of the Southwest and decided to natural dye old white cotton T-shirts abandoned by my son when he flew the coup.

The T-shirts were washed, scoured and prepped for dyeing with tannin & mordant baths before natural dyeing.

The plant & tree derived dyes I used were – quebracho rojo, madder roots, cutch, fustic, pomegranate, kamala, indigo and logwood. I also used cochineal that yields a pink. Cochineal is an insect found in the SW area of the US & Mexico. It feeds on the pads of prickly pear cacti.

The jacket was machine stitched with seam allowances visible on the outside. Parallel whipstitching held the seams open.

The underside of the jacket. The parallel whipstitch is attractive from both sides. An added bonus when there is no lining!

Details: t-shirt fringe and hand beaded trim.

I was inspired by my fellow refashionista, Rose, to do a bit of painting on my thrift store boots.

By far, this was my favorite challenge! I was able to incorporate all the techniques I love to do . . . natural dyeing, sewing and decorative hand stitching.


Sonya Blackstone from She’s So Creative

This round was a little more challenging than the rest, because I literally live as far away from the Southwest as you can get in this country lol. Due to that, there is not a lot of Southwest style clothing or prints here.
However, I did have this super cute dress I bought at a really great price last year, so I decided to just go ahead and use it for this challenge.
I opted to go less “southwest style” and focus more on the “southwest print” because (as mentioned above) I’m in the Northeast and we don’t dress in the Southwestern styles; I wanted the garment to be wearable here.
For this bodysuit romper I cut the dress down the side seams and cut the shorts from that fabric. Then I took the sleeveless shirt and cut the bottom 5-6″ off of that and adjusted the size to take it down to a small. After forming the shorts, I attached the shirt top.
I took the lace from the shoulders of the dress and made belt loops, then took the remaining fabric from the dress and made a long belt that could tied on the hip (you may be noticing I’m quite a fan of belts!).
Originally I had planned a loose flowy romper, but in the end decided to go with a fitted bodysuit style, so it can be worn under oversized cardigans or even a summer vests with ease. I adore the look!
Marisa Glied from The Refash Stash
When I think of Southwest I think of cowboys or ranchers. Then I got to thinking about Southwest fashion. These cowboys need rugged durable clothing for their tough work outside in the elements. With that being said I thought to myself why can’t I mix rugged with feminine style? I found this perfect suede dress, crocheted skirt and sweater dress as my materials!

The Sweater:

Daytime in the desert can be sweltering heat but the nighttime temperatures drop drastically. This is why I featured a long sweater in my Southwest refashion.

I cut the sweater dress open in the front. I also changed the black buttons into big silver ones. (Nothing says Southwest to me like Silver and of course Turquoise)

For the back of my sweater, I added a panel of the crocheted skirt and the decorative embroidered part of an old shirt I had laying around (The embroidery reminded me of a Southwest type of pattern).

The Dress:

I removed the 2 pockets from the front of the dress. I originally wanted to cut the bottom hem of the dress to make it fringed, but that would have made the dress indecently too short!

Another thing that makes me think of the southwest is Navajo drawings. I found this adorable lizard picture online, which I cut out and make it a stencil. I pulled out my trusty fabric paints and went to town!
After my painted lizard dried I added a few more details. I changed the neckline into a v-neck and added a piece of the crocheted fabric into the V. Then I used the bottom hem of the crocheted skirt and added it to the bottom of my dress (Not fringe but it does add the feminine touch that I wanted).
*The dress without the sweater*
*Mr. Lizard was ready for his close-up*
*Made this necklace out of stuff I already had in my stash. I finally found a use for my buffalo nickel button!*

*The silver buttons I added. (The turquoise ring was my great grandmothers)*

The Front:

The Back:
Deana Budgell from djewelss
When hearing the word “Southwest”, first things that come to mind are, turquoise, fringe, cowboy, Wild West, tribal/native, wool Navajo blankets…but I’m not one to go with the first thought…
Taking you back to the influences of the 60’s and 70’s of Southwest Airlines flight attendants uniforms, that were so beautiful and flattering. After talking with some PSA employees this week, they feel the same way, It was classy and beautiful.
I found a suit the perfect shade of burnt orange and a pink dress shirt for the coat and dress for the flight attendant uniform. I dyed the men’s shirt the shade of pink I wanted, and made the hat box from the burnt orange dress with white buttons.
I used batting from the couch from a previous challenge for the hat box, and also skirting from the couch for the hat. It’s the couch that keeps on giving. The zipper in the back of the dress came from one of the wedding dresses I used in last weeks challenge.
The front center and back of dress is from the dress shirt that I dyed, the sleeves and sides of dress as well as the jacket is made from the Suit jacket and skirt.
I redesigned the jacket to meet the SW design and added Shorts that I made from the lining to go in under dress. Every single scrap piece of fabric was used…I even joined a few pieces to be able to make the hat. I’m dangerous with a can of spray paint…I just think it can bring life to something bland…so I sprayed the boots and purse to match the colors of the dress. I absolutely love how everything turned out.
Refashioning to me is taking something that is discarded or nor longer useful to someone and making it into something you love wither or not it’s recognizable as the old item or not, it’s no longer something unwanted…
WOW! These people are amazing!!!
Now, it’s your turn to vote for your favorite designer.
Be sure to click on your favorite designer then scroll to the bottom of the poll and click vote so your vote will be counted. You can vote once every 24 hours.
If you don’t see the poll, click here.
Next week’s challenge:
Kentucky Derby Hat

Week One: Statement Sleeves

Week Two: 1970’s

Week Three: Faux Fur

Week Four: Small to Large

Week Five: Southwest

Week Six: Kentucky Derby Hat


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Winner of the Small to Large Challenge: Refashion Runway Season Five

I’ve said it before and I”ll say it again, I’m so glad that you, the voters, and the judges decide the winners each week because in my book, everyone’s a winner.

Here’s how the Small to Large Challenge came out.


In 4th place:

Marisa Glied

Michelle Paganini

In 3rd place:

Sonya Blackstone

Julie Kong

In 2nd place:

Beki Bliesterfelt

and KT

And our 1st place winner are:

Deana Budgell

and Peggy Latta

Great work everyone and so much fun!


I would also like to thank a few people for the Small to Large Challenge idea. Before Season Five started, I asked people to send me challenge ideas and several people suggested Small to Large. I’d like to send each of them one of my Refashion Handbooks.

Deanna from Wedding Dress Blue, Rosylass, Darcy, and Holly Young please send your address to and I’ll send one out to you ASAP.


The last few weeks, several of the designers left the competition on their own free will so it made it much easier to say good-bye. But today, it makes me so sad to announce the two designers that we have to say good-bye to this week. I’m going to miss Diane Sladowski and Rose Henegar so much. Diane’s use of denim is so inspirational and Rose’s wonderful narratives and creative use of textiles made me smile every time I opened an email from her.

I have truly enjoyed getting to know them both.

Because everyone is a winner on Refashion Runway, they will both be receiving a JoAnn’s gift card for all of their hard work.

Before we say good-bye though, let’s see what they created for the Southwest Challenge.

Rose Henegar

South West…a.k.a.: Where the Wild Things Are

Over the course of the past six weeks my mind has ventured forward to the
South West. I envisioned the use of Steampunk accessories, of making new
from not always gently used denim, and fiber in all of it’s many forms.
My muse for this challenge is the woman/icon Georgia O’Keefe. I absolutely
LOVE her bold beautiful floral paintings. Her poppy is one of my all-time
favorites. But, the woman would wander off into the desert and schlepp back
the bleached bones of a cow, a wild steer, or the entire rib cage of who
knows what dead beast. Those are the paintings that I chose to replicate.
My stash of denim is a bottomless tote of parts. Many of the legs came in
to play, as well as pockets only and decorative pocket flaps. The vultures
had previously picked over a dark wash jacket, leaving behind this collar
and the peplum portion. The print pair of Capri pants never were cute, but
in small increments I rather like the splash of color.
Trim on the upper coat is a crocheted addition of baby yarn called
Pipsqueak. It reminds me of the fleecy lining of a coat my dad wore when I
was quite young. The hats I made to mimic the look of Georgia’s usual
attire, as well as the medicine bag that I wet felted and beaded, then
adorned with a compass face. Lastly, I made a pair of boot covers. The
intention was to keep the rattlesnakes from climbing up my pant legs when I
go out to the prairie to rustle me up some grubs. Uh, I mean vittles.
See you when the cows come home…now, get along, little doggies!


Diane Sladowski from Thoughts from a Seamstress

For the Southwest Challenge I started with a few pair of jeans and a bin of scraps
from other projects. I had a hard time creating the Southwest pattern on the back
until I found one for quilting on Pinterest. (I have a Refashion Runway board
here: if you’d like to
see my inspiration for all the Challenges.)

My week was super busy and I didn’t
finish until almost 9:30 pm so I only took photos on Betty, my mannequin. More info
and photos will be posted on my blog


Up next, the Southwest Challenge. Click here to see what these talented designers have refashioned for you this week.


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How to Turn a Photo into a Paint By Number: New One Minute Video

We interrupt this season of Refashion Runway with another fun craft idea.

Apparently, Paint by Numbers is a thing again.

But, now it’s even better because you can make your own from any photo you’d like.


Upload a favorite vacation photo, load up some canvas paper in the printer, and gather your brushes with some Apple Barrel Acrylic Paints.

Let’s get started!

Click here for the full step-by-step photo tutorial on how to give your brain a break and create some beautiful art with a paint by number you made yourself.

It’s a fun, relaxing and personalized way to create some new art for your home.

Happy Painting!

If you came here for sewing and refashioning tutorials, click here.

If you came to see Refashion Runway, click here:

Next week’s challenge is:


Week One: Statement Sleeves

Week Two: 1970’s

Week Three: Faux Fur

Week Four: Small to Large

Week Five: Southwest

Week Six: Kentucky Derby Hat

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Time to Vote: Small to Large Challenge: Refashion Runway Season Five

Welcome back to Refashion Runway Season Five.

This week the challenge is Small to Large. One of the things I love about this competition is the surprise each time I open my email and see how each of these talented women interpret the challenge and what they create each week. I hope you love surprises as much as I do…

Have fun!!!!!! 🙂


Deana Budgell from djewelss

The first thing I thought when I saw the title of this challenge was that I needed to take something small and resize it to fit someone larger. But I immediately discarded that idea because I always like to do something surprising and unexpected.

So after some thought I decided to take something tiny and make it life-size. Side-note, I asked Beth how much creative license I could take in interpreting the challenge and she said it was open to my creative ideas.

I found two wedding dresses in a thrift store that I thought had a lot of character and could reinvented as something stunning. I wanted to do something bold so I first dyed the fabric red. I had to touch it up a bit for it to become the shade of red that I had envisioned. Then I created two evening gowns, one tiny and another life size.

I’m really excited about how these turned out, I hope you like them.



My small-to-large concept was to use children’s clothing to make adult wear. I found a little girl’s dress that was made from beautiful tulle with iron-on type black velvet designs on it. Because the dress was so small, I had limited fabric and had to get really creative, but to my surprise, I was able to make the whole dress from that single dress. Luckily, the dress had 2 layers of tulle and and some lining. I used almost every square inch of the dress. First, I deconstructed the dress. I used the existing bodice parts as a base for mine. I added the lining fabric to the side seams to make it larger and covered it with tulle like the rest of the top. I also made the shoulder straps out of tulle. For the bottom, I took out the waist gathering and made two A-line skirts. I stacked them to create a longer/ slimmer silhouette. I made a base layer from the lining because the overlay is sheer. I added some design elements to the skirt for fun. It was a lot more work than I thought it would be but I am happy with the final result..


Sonya Blackstone from She’s So Creative

For this “Small to Large” challenge I decided to take something short and make it long.

I had come across this cropped jean jacket while shopping for round two challenge and I knew this would be the perfect piece.

I cut the trim and collar off of the jacket (it was all one piece) and cut the collar off of the rest of the trim. I ripped the seams on the jeans and then cut them into five 12″ high pieces; front right, front left, back right, back center, and back left. I attached all of the bottom panels and then sewed them to the denim jacket. I then took the waistband from the jeans and attached it to the collar to make a trim and then reattached the collar and the trim to the jacket. I took the remaining portion of the denim jacket trim and sewed it to the bottom.

While I was planning the jacket I thought it would be nice to add another piece to wear underneath the jacket, so I decided to take a shirt and lengthen it into a dress. My favorite part of this piece is that my son actually picked the two shirts and they ended up matching perfectly to the colors in the floral print denim!

For this dress I took the sleeves off both shirts, but kept the collars in tact. I sewed the armholes closed on the sweater, forming an a-line skirt. I then cut the bottom portion off of the shirt and replaced it with the sweater. I took the bottom portion of the shirt and made the knotted belt for the dress.


Michelle Paganini from Paganoonoo

This weeks challenge is “Small to Large”
So many possibilities! I settled on vintage linen pieces combined to make a larger piece – a Haori-style jacket.

The two main base pieces were a linen tablecloth with fading embroidery and a large strip of a cutter quilt (too damaged in parts to be useable as a whole quilt.)

As I sorted through all the small pieces I found those that made the best color combinations, and trimmed the to size.

Sometimes I needed to square the pieces.

The flannel english bulldog is from a pair of Nick and Nora PJs.

One front side is lined linen and the other is quilted.

The sleeves are from embroidered runners and bits of an old pillowcase.

The back is a mix of both linen tablecloth and quilted pieces,. The banded collar is quilted.

was a pleasure to combine all of the smaller pieces into a larger garment!

The whole garment makes me smile. What role will it play in my wardrobe? Probably multiple: #1 super cool bed jacket, #2 playful lunch out with girlfriends, #3 sewing workshop wear… the possibilities are endless. Probably will not work for date night, as my hubby would be likely say, “This makes my teeth itch!”.

me, this one is a winner!



Marisa Glied from The Refash Stash

Sorry I couldn’t model the main piece of this refashion but it was too
teeny (that’s the point, right?)

*The Shirt:*

I removed the collar, removed the bands around the sleeves and cut it
straight up the middle.

I cut a large section from the patterned shirt and pinned it to the coral
shirt. I used black bias tape in between the 2 layers for extra detail.
This panel wasn’t enough to make my shirt large enough so I repeated this
process and added a panel to the back as well.

I was lucky enough to save the original neckline from the patterned shirt
so I stitched that onto my new shirt to tie it all together.

*The skirt:*

My fun sequined skirt was just a tad bit snug in the waist but lucky for me
it had an elastic waistband. I unpicked the top seam and added 2 inches to
the original elastic.

Now for my favorite part: pockets! I used a piece of scrap fabric to make 2
squares. I unpicked the side seams of the skirt and stitched the pockets in.

I used 2 small scraps that were leftover from the patterned shirt and
stitched them together to make a large piece, which I wore as a headband!
(small to large)


Diane Sladowski from Thoughts From a Seamstress

This time I started with two pink sweatshirts and a chambray shirt.
The zippered hoodie was shrunken and had a small puffy paint logo on the left front
and a large one on the back. The hood and sleeves were way too short and the zipper
was wonky and out of shape. The flowered pullover was too small to put on.
I cut them apart and rearranged the shirts. I used the chambray shirt to cover the
puffy paint, add a flounce and reused the front buttons. The flowered shirt becomes
the hood and lengthens the sleeves and the body. The cut flowers bring it all
together for a much more wearable fun garment!
More photos of my process on my blog


Rose Henegar

Mi Vida Loca-An Homage to Crazy Quilting

What we are in life is a sum of our past. Sometimes it is reflected in our
actions, our emotions, or in this case as a compilation of sewing and
wardrobe options from days gone by.
I had a little southern granny who sewed crazy quilting pillow covers. On
close inspection, we recognized the fabrics from grandpa’s p.j.’s and
granny’s house dresses. The colorful assortment was a love story. The
assembly of garments and fabric scraps from quilting and mending all worked
together were made new with gentle hands.
My end result contains a skirt too small, a jacket too tight (but the
colors! Oh my!), jelly roll strips from the making of a wedding quilt…
The blank canvas used was a work vest. Ho hum, it was a boxy denim nothing.
The magic that happened converted these castoffs into a smock that exudes
color and playfulness. And pockets. LOTS of pockets! The sassy belt across
the front houses a pouch made from not one, but two pockets!
So, enjoy our venture into the she shed. I gave it a test drive and was
impressed with the versatility (a place for my hammer, my life savers, my
phone, my pencil…).
I love it! Hope you do too!


Julie Kong from Sugarcane Sweet Designs

Hi Everyone,
This week we have an unusual challenge of making something bigger. This is something I need to do to all the clothes in my closet! Anyway, I picked a dress to work on that someone gave me a few years back. I called it my Morticia Addams dress. Do you remember that old TV show, The Addams Family? Morticia always had on a super tight dresses that trailed behind her. Now that’s just what this dress did. Either I was going to have to grow Three more feet and loose 20 lbs or fix the dress. My only option was to fix the dress! I felt like a superhero saving this beautiful crocheted garment. Apparently, I now have a new superhero power!!!! Okay, I’m getting distracted girls, on to the dress. This is the kind of dress you don’t cut up and make into a skirt or a top. It’s to beautiful as it is. I had to save it while keeping its beauty intact. First, I knew I had to create more room in the top and change the neckline. I took a chance and slit the top down the center front. It seemed like it was going to unravel! Yes, it was going to unravel. Oh, no, Mr Bill what have I done!! Yep, a total panic moment for me. Luckily, for me, a good zig zag and seam binding did the trick. Yes, it’s stable and it survived. Next, I added lace, trim, flowers and beads to the neckline. I felt the neckline was the focal point of the dress. It needed to be elegant. All of which was achieved with the trims I had purchased from a local organization called, Redding Fashion Alliance. They were selling scraps of lace and fabric to raise money for sewing scholarships. What a great program. After that, I cut off the bottom of the dress. Wow, let me tell you, I can make a whole other dress with that bottom piece. Moving forward I then used part of the bottom piece to make a ruffle. I sewed it on at an angle to create eye appeal. I also had an antique piece of lace that I sewed on over the ruffle. The lace is so beautiful and delicate. Oh and I did tea dye all my laces. I love using Red Rose Tea. It gives things a slight rosy color.
THE DRESS HAS BEEN SAVED! Just think, I almost gave it away.
I hope I have inspired you with me ideas. Hope to see you next week.


Beki Biesterfelt from Beki’s Custom Sewing

I love the color of this wool coat dress a friend gave me a few years ago. It was a bit snug across the back & I didn’t care for the straight silhouette.

By removing the sleeves I gained freedom across the upper back. I used the sleeves to make 5 godets. By adding 3 godets to the back and 2 to the front I was able to achieve the fit & flare volume that I had envisioned.

I wet felted this wool/mohair scarf last year and really didn’t have any coordinates to wear with it.

So I took the leftover wool/mohair roving and needle felted it into the bottom of the vest.

I hand beaded the center front, armholes and collar topstitch lines.

The gold buttons were replaced with beaded round balls that I made from the leftover beads.

I really liked how this turned out!


Peggy Latta from Heirloom Textile Art

As I think about the challenge for each week, I try to achieve this set of criteria:
Will the finished restyle be something I will be proud to wear? Does it reflect my creativity and personal style?
Does the restyle inspire my followers and those of The Renegade Seamstress?
Are the restyling techniques adaptable for all sewing skill levels?

This week’s challenge…small to large…is something that I do frequently. In my dreams I am a petite size 6; in reality I have a mixed size figure…12ish on top/14+ on the bottom…and I have a slight hip deformity. Enlarging beautiful thrift finds to fit my body is definitely in my skill set.

With the help of a size 6 pleated skirt and a size 4 A-line skirt (for additional fabric), I have enlarged an extremely ill-fitting jacket (ok in the shoulder, way too tight over the tummy/hips, ridiculously long sleeves) and tiny size 6 crepe pants to create a mixed fabric, shades-of-red suit.
Asymmetry is extremely helpful in camouflaging my figure discrepancies. And, I think asymmetrical garments are just more interesting! My restyled, too tight jacket now has plenty of tummy and hip room with the addition of pleated peplums. The tiny crepe pants gained waist and hip ease with pleated side seam insets.

As I prepared my challenge this week, I was thinking about two of my favorite quotes:
“When in Doubt Wear Red” and “People Will Stare. Make it worth their while.”
My entry checked off the criteria for me (creative and reflects my personal style.) I hope you are inspired to find your RED, try some restyling and go out there and turn some heads!


WOW!!! This week is one of the best ever!! I hope you had fun and now it’s your turn to vote for your favorite designer in the Small to Large Challenge.

Be sure to click on your favorite designer then scroll to the bottom of the poll and click vote so your vote will be counted. You can vote once every 24 hours.

If you don’t see the poll click here.

Next week’s challenge is:


Week One: Statement Sleeves

Week Two: 1970’s

Week Three: Faux Fur

Week Four: Small to Large

Week Five: Southwest

Week Six: Kentucky Derby Hat



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Winner of the Faux Fur Challenge: Refashion Runway Season Five

Wow, I don’t know about you guys but this last challenge really warmed me up!! 🙂

Everyone did a great job and here’s how the votes and the judging came out.

The fourth place winners are:

Marisa Glied

and KT

The third place winners are:

Michelle Paganini

and Sonya Blackstone

The second place winners are:

Beki Biesterfelt

and Julie Kong

And the first place winners are

drumroll please……

Peggy Latta

and Deana Budgell

So much faux fur warmth and coziness! Great job everyone!!


We have to say good bye to Summer Ashley and Sandy Yates this week. They didn’t have time to finish the challenge. We’re sorry to see you go. 😦

But, we loved having you Summer and Sandy and thank you for being a part of Refashion Runway Season Five. We do have a gift from JOANN Fabrics and Crafts for both of you.

Now it’s time to click here to vote for your favorite designer in the this week’s challenge:

Small to Large

Have fun!!!!


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How to Make a T-Shirt Yarn Rug: New One Minute Video

Wondering what to do with all of those old t-shirts hanging around your closets and lurking in your drawers? Before you throw them out or give them away, make some t-shirt yarn.

Then, grab a mesh rug canvas, a latch hook, a cup of your favorite beverage and get set up in front of your favorite tv series. You’re gonna get hooked on rug making when you find out how relaxing it is to create these beautiful no-waste projects. Your friends will be shocked when you tell them that you created this mod, shag rug from old t-shirts.


Click here for the full tutorial on how to make this rug.

Click here for the full tutorial on how to make t-shirt yarn.

Happy Hooking! 😉


PS. If you’re following Refashion Runway Season Five, be sure to click here to check out the newest challenge, Faux Fur, and vote for your favorite designer.

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