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11 In Sewing

How to Upcycle Clothing: What Dave Ramsey and Marie Kondo Taught Me About Fashion

Do you love to sew but get tired of how expensive quality fabric can be? Have you noticed that it actually can be much cheaper just to buy clothes at the big box/department store than to make them yourself? Or maybe you’re like me and you just want to actually wear the items in your closet that keep sitting there taking up precious space!

Marie Kondo taught me to only keep the clothing items that Spark Joy, but Dave Ramsey taught me to use what I have & live frugally! Guess what happens when you combine the love of living debt free with the love of keeping things tidy? I learned how to revamp my wardrobe without spending a dime! Do you want to learn how to have new clothing for free too?

I recently did a summer closet purge on my wardrobe and picked out a few items that I still loved but their fit was not sparking joy. If you’re a woman I am SURE you can relate to this: you buy a dress, think it is SUPER cute, wear it once, wash it once, and then suddenly its way too short to wear in public…. That is exactly what happened to me with these 3 (former) dresses! I actually bought all of them over a year ago so I am thrilled to finally get to wear them again!

To make these ill-fitting dresses wearable, I decided to cut them all off at the hip and add a new hem, making them into shirts! I’ve been getting into garment sewing anyway lately so a simple hem on these was as easy as a walk in the park!

If you want to do a similar technique follow these easy steps:

  • Put your dress on, and create marks one inch longer than where you want your bottom of your shirt to be
  • Take off the dress and trim it where your marks are
  • Fold the hem under 1/4″ and then 1/2″, press with an iron, and stitch it in place with your sewing machine. If this is your first attempt, I suggest using a zip-zag stitch as it will hide any imperfections easily!

What do you think?!

Have I inspired you to alter clothing in your wardrobe to SPARK JOY with what you already own? Tell me in the comments if you have any projects you plan to do for upcycling your current wardrobe!

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11 Comments

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  • Reply
    Eliane Bergmann
    August 2, 2019 at 7:04 pm

    This is such a great idea! I have a few clothing items in my closet that I don’t wear for one reason or another.. I’ll have to try this.

    • Reply
      homemadeemilyjane
      August 2, 2019 at 8:40 pm

      Thank you! Would love to see what you end up doing with them!

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