Make It: Repurposing Clothes

September 19th, 2008 BY Annie | 23 Comments


I’m no seamstress (to put it mildly) but even I get excited by the idea of taking something out-dated, old-fashioned, and unappealing and transforming it into a great new item for my closet.

The September 2008 issue of Green Living Idea’s newsletter has two helpful articles about repurposing clothes:
Capture Eco-Savvy Style With Recycled Clothing is just a good overview of the whole idea of repurposed clothing, and 5 Tricks from an Eco-Fashionista’s Handbag gives you a good idea of where to start looking for second-hand and vintage clothing instead of going back to the same mega-stores for more mass-produced wearables.

If you already have a closet bursting with possibility, then shopping for more isn’t what you need. What you need is a primer on clothing transformation. This article from Suite101 is a good place to start. If that isn’t enough, then go to this Fact Sheet from Ohio State University’s Extension Service. It goes into more detail to help you get started.

There are two “professional” lines of repurposed clothing coming out (or maybe out already?) You can read about them here, at this Whole Living article.

It’s time for me to break out ye old sewing machine and relearn how to thread it and sew a straight line. I’ve got a box full of old clothes waiting for a new life. And with winter coming and me moving to my semi-hibernating state, I think I might be able to take on some of those projects that have been floating around in my head. I’m not much of a clothes collector, but I’ve been blessed with some friends and family with great fashion sense and a generous hand-me-down policy. With my standby clothes and their old-but-new-to-me passed on goodies, I think I can come up with a lovely winter wardrobe. And I get such a kick out of wearing something that I know nobody else is going to have. No showing up at the party dressed like that other girl for me, no sir.

Have you done any clothes repurposing? What are your projects?

Image Credit: thisvintagechica, shirt is made out of a sheet. Cute, huh?