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plain gray office chair office chair recovered in AH Sofia black and white floral fabric

We’ve had this plain gray office chair for a while and I decided I wanted to dress it up a bit. I had bought a yard of this Alexander Henry floral called Sofia a few months ago, I didn’t know what I was going to use it for and suddenly it clicked—the chair! I haven’t done this before but it was surprisingly easy. Taking the chair apart and putting it back together was the only hard part because it required figuring out how to use the socket wrench. I’m pretty pleased with the results.


long drawstring skirt made from fringed rayon jacquard scarf

This was originally a very long (72″ x 28″?) rayon jacquard scarf with fringed ends. I believe it came from Nepal. It’s a coral sort of pink color. Not something I would normally pick for myself but for some reason I really like it. I know I was not going to wear it as a scarf so I decided to make it over into a skirt.

The fabric is lusciously soft and drapey and I was terrified to cut into it. I pinned and pressed very carefully to line everything up and then cut out a few inches of the middle to make the skirt the right length for me. I sewed up the side seams, finished the top edge and turned it over to encase 1/2″ elastic and a drawstring cord. Very simple.

The drawstring cord took a bit of time because I had a foolish notion to unravel the few inches I had cut off and twist the long weft threads into a cord. It worked but it wasn’t as neat as I had hoped it would be. With the help of my spindle I plied it and then doubled it again and threaded the ends with some olivewood beads from Israel. Surprisingly the drawstring is stronger than it looks. If it doesn’t last I’ll just find some matching pearl cotton.

wood beaded drawstring cord on jacquard skirt

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I discovered that my summer wardrobe is missing sleeveless shirts so I decided to make one quickly by refashioning a well-loved long sleeve tee shirt. This shirt may be 10 years old, made by the GAP originally, always long lasting. It was finally getting a bit ragged around the neckline and cuffs though so I cut the sleeves off, cut the neckline lower and used Made By Rae’s ruffle treatment around the neckline. It came out pretty well and comfortable in the sunnier weather we’ve been having. My 3.5 year old daughter kindly took the photo for me. I don’t usually like having my picture taken but she did a great job so I’ll share it with you, tilt and all. :)

ruffle trimmed tank top refashioned from long sleeve tee shirt

photo credit: the girl

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slashed knees in jeans

Above is the all too familiar before photo. Usually jeans that look like this get hemmed into shorts. But my friend Jan’s son and my boy share a common problem, long legs for their waist size. Both boys have been destroying the knees of their pants as well as growing out of the length, even on slim sizes, when most of the pants are still in great shape and the next size up is too big in the waist anyway. Jan brought me these jeans along with an idea—cut out the knee section and replace it with a longer piece of denim, thereby solving two problems at the same time. It was a good idea but the biggest problem I faced was keeping the number of layers of denim down to a thickness my home sewing machines could manage. I also somehow couldn’t get around the idea that the patches would look weird going all the way around the leg. So I came up with this arrangement, reusing the lower legs off a contrasting colored pair of jeans, and cutting the seams on a bit of a diagonal. I think it worked out okay. The topstitching was necessary for strength but very difficult and would be impossible on a smaller size. I’m not sure I would do it exactly like this again. For love yes, but not for money!

diagonal inserted contrasting jeans patches

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