Thursday, September 25, 2014

Refashion: Silk Tweed Chanel-esque skirt suit - Part 1

I thrifted this gorgeous silk tweed Chanel-esque skirt suit from my local Thrift store last month. It's in really good condition and only $9.99! The jacket fits okay but the skirt is a bit long because I'm short. The whole look is a bit 'blah' and matronly on me:

I searched through my stash of notions and found a roll of navy velvet ribbon so I 'auditioned' it to the jacket:

It seemed to look okay so I decided to use the ribbon to trim the front opening, the pocket flaps and the sleeves. And this is how it turned out:

The effect is not dramatic but I think it gives the jacket a bit more 'life'. Here is how it looks on me after the simple refashion:
(Yes I'm kneeling on the ground because I can't find the tripod for the camera!)
I like quick refashioning like this. Just a bit of trim and an hour or sewing makes the jacket more attractive for me. It is still lady-like enough to wear to the office or I can wear jeans and boots with this on the weekend. I'm happy to have busted some ribbon stash too!

Stay tuned for Part 2 when I tackle the long and matronly silk tweed skirt!

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

MAGAM Sept project result - another pair of Jeggings

I actually finished my MAGAM Sept jeggings (McCall's 5273) a while ago. I had even worn them and laundered them. For some reason the fabric wasn't very colour fast. So now there are discoloured streaks on the pant legs. Oh well! I'm still wearing it. I added back pockets with my own design details, a faux front fly and topstitched the inseam for strength. It came together very quickly since this is probably the 10th time I had sewn with this pattern. I plan to wear them all Fall/Winter long with cardigans, sweaters, and sweater dresses. They tuck nicely into my knee high boots. A very useful piece of clothing indeed!

I think I'll be using this pattern again for more skinny pants/leggings for the coming Fall/Winter season. Stay tuned!

Saturday, September 13, 2014

My One Week One Pattern Pictures!

The One Week One Pattern 2014 challenge was fun! Thanks to Handmade Jane for organizing this. The weather in the past week had been variable (coolish to coldish) and my 3 linen blend bottoms were stretched to the limit in terms of the colder days. My 3 bottoms were all made with Butterick 5044 - 2 pairs of linen blend shorts and 1 pair of linen blend trousers:

And here the pictures of how I wore them during the OWOP week:

With Self stitched Black Linen Blend Jacket (McCall's 4928) 
and Self-made Silver pendant necklace

Self-Refashioned black silk tank top, 
and Self-made beaded necklace

Day 3:
With a thrifted embellished cotton voile tunic

Day 4:
With a refashioned thrifted cardigan

Day 5:
It's a lot colder today. I wore the linen trousers with 
a thrifted knit top 

Day 6:
It was pretty cold today and I was crazy enough to wear shorts! 
I wore these shorts with a thrifted knit top 
and a menswear vest that I have had since 1995!

Day 7:
It was 9 Celsius when I woke up. No more shorts!
I'm wearing these linen blend trousers with
a thrifted knit top,
and a thrifted belt.

I had really enjoyed this challenge! It challenged me to think more about the different combinations I can wear with my self-stitched clothes. I think I challenge myself to do something like this every month! Thanks again to Handmade Jane!!

Friday, September 12, 2014

MAGAM September plan - Fall/Winter sewing starts now

The weather just became much colder in the last couple of days - from low 20s C to low teens! I guess summer is officially over. Time to bring out the winter clothes and snow gear!

I looked in my closet for Fall/Winter clothes and realized that I need more jeggings/leggings/skinny jeans. I wore them daily last Fall/Winter, with my many sweater dresses, jackets and cardigans. I searched through my fabric stash and found this black blue stretch denim. I will be using my tried and true and tweaked McCall's 5273 pattern for this pair of jeggings. They should come together fairly quickly.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

I have joined the 'One Week One Pattern 2014' challenge!


I read about this One Week One Pattern Challenge on 'So Zo...'s blog, organized by Handmade Jane. It sounds like a fun thing to join. Basically it is a group challenge where participants wear garments made from just one pattern of their choice, every day for a week. It is taking place from Sept 6-12, 2014.

 I have lots of Tried-and-True patterns that I kept going back to so I'll have to look at those clothing items in my closet to finalize which one I'll be using for this challenge.  For example, I made multiple bottoms with McCall's 5273 and Butterick 5044.

McCall's 5273:

Butterick 5044:

I suppose I`ll decide the day before the challenge to see what the weather will be like for that week. If it`s hot I`ll definitely be wearing my shorts and linen trousers. I`m hoping that I can style them to look sufficiently different for the whole week.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

MAGAM August Project Completed! Back to School Boys' trousers

I finished my MAGAM Back to School Boys' trousers! I actually made 2 pairs, one in a khaki green polyester cotton blend twill and the other in beige polyester cotton blend twill as well.

The stash pattern McCall's 5222 was bought for $0.99 in a local thrift store. The pants were meant as pajama pants so they were super wide in the leg. I had to trim the leg width a bit but they are still a bit wide. Otherwise, I made no other pattern changes. It was simple and straight forward to sew. I didn't even look at the instructions. The pattern pieces spoke for themselves.

The fabrics were remnants in my stash from the shorts I made my husband a couple of years ago.  I didn't have enough fabric for the whole length of the pant legs so I improvised and made the pant legs in 2 sections and top stitched the joining seam - I call that a design feature! ;-)

Yes my son wore the pants already and got grass stains on the knee....
I'm happy that my boy has 2 pairs of proper length trousers for the new school year. And I busted some of my fabric stash - YES!

Thursday, August 14, 2014

MAGAM August Plan - Back to School sewing!!

I can't believe we are half way through August already! The summer has really flown by. Of course I'm very excited to have the kids back to school! Yes! It is really 'the most wonderful time of the year' for parents!! LOL!

So I'm going to embark on some Back To School sewing. My kids have grown a little and now their pants are all too short. I have accumulated lots of Kids sewing patterns from my local Thrift Store so I'll be using those. As well, I'm sure I have lots of fabrics in my stash that would be suitable for kids' pants. So this will be a stash pattern/stash fabrics project.

Here is what I dug out: McCall's 5222 and Polyester/Cotton blend twill in 2 different colours.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Blogspiration - The Refashionista!!

I love Refashioning and I'm a fan of many amazing Refashioning blogs. One of my Refash Idols is the 'Refashionista'. She is quite well known by mainstream media now (she was featured on American network TV). She finds these $1 not-so-attractive garments from her local thrift stores and made them into awesome fun garments. One of her recent refashions had me floored - A simple and quick refashion from Ugly Gaucho Pants to Awesome Sexy Dress. 


Isn't she seriously talented? I think yes! You can check her out all her awesome refashion projects at her blog:

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Refashion: Teal silk tunic

I love thrifting silk and cashmere at my local thrift stores. I thifted this XL Teal silk tunic a couple of years ago for a few dollars. The silk is not flimsy at all and the tunic is in a very good condition. I like the colour and the size - the larger the better for refashioning!
(Note: I'm actually wearing shorts in this picture :-)

I used a self drafted cap-sleeve tunic pattern to cut up this tunic. I shortened the length by about 3cm.  It was quick and easy to do. And now I have another silk tunic to wear in the summer, as well as for layering in the colder months.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

I made Kimchi! Yum!

I love Korean food and especially Kimchi. I always thought it must be really difficult to make something that yummy until I came across this website `Korean Babsang - a Korean mom's home cooking'. I bought all the ingredients on Friday and made it on Saturday. As of tonight I have eaten 1/4 of the whole batch already! I can't believe it's so easy to make Kimchi.  It's super yummy!

If you are interested in making Korean food, I recommend that you check out this website!


Tuesday, July 22, 2014

July MAGAM project ocmpleted - with changes

I finished my July MAGAM pants! However, I didn't use the black microfibre as I had planned. I had a good look at the material and thought that perhaps the microfibre could be a bit too thick for the type of breezy summer pants that I had intended. So I just used this green Linen blend material that I have had in my stash for ages to make a pair of wide cargo type pants. I have used this material recently for this same pattern, but in a shorts version.

I used size Small (as I found the size Medium too loose when I made the shorts version) and incorporated both the front pockets and the right mid-thigh pocket. I like lots of pockets for my clothing! I cut the length of the pants between view B and E because I wanted it to be trouser length. I inserted elastics for the waistband. It's a bit wider than any of my existing self-made pants but I figured that it`s nice and breezy for the summer. As long as I wear a more fitted top on top, the wide legs shouldn`t make me look too stumpy. Here is how it looks with the top tucked in (I never tuck in my tops):

And here is how I would wear it:

Notice the pockets almost overlapping on the right leg:

I think it looks okay. It is a basic wardrobe element, after all.  I think I will be wearing these pants often this summer! I also did a review for this pattern on

Thursday, July 17, 2014

July MAGAM plan - Microfibre Cargo pants

At last! I have decided what to make for my July Make A Garment A Month project. I sifted through my  pattern stash, my fabric stash, my wardrobe, my sewing magazines, etc, for days and couldn't figure out what to make. Finally, a couple of days ago, the weather was alternating between raining and sunny every hour. My trusty RTW microfibre cargo pants (bought in the UK in the late 1990s and still going strong) saved the day. It was cool to wear in the sun and when it was wet, it dried quickly.

Thus the decision to make another pair in this Black Microfibre fabric that has been in my stash for years (bought in the UK in the late 1990s as well), using Butterick 5044. I think I'll make view B. I'm short so it will be ankle length on me instead of calf length I hope. One can always use another pair of 3 season weather-versatile pants!

 Okay! Off to the sewing machine!