November 09, 2011

Refashionista - Kelly from Sewing In No Man's Land

Refashionista is winding down.  Tomorrow is our last day!  Don't be sad.  There's good news.  We have Kelly from Sewing in No Man's Land here today!

Kelly amazes me with her detailed, over-the-top designs.  She is an incredible seamstress and to top it off she's a professional photographer.  Even if you don't sew, her blog is too beautiful to pass up.  Welcome Kelly!

I am so excited to be part of the Refashionista event this year! I love Cheri and her fabulous posts. She has got to be the blog with the most boy posts in the blogosphere. That takes some serious creative chops, boys are not the easiest to create for ha! I also love that her blogs name is as long as mine ;) As soon as I got Cheri's email I knew what I wanted to do. I had been perusing our local thrift store and noticed the over whelming amount of wool coats on the racks. None of them were particularly my style and I thought "what a waste of a darn expensive material". Which of course got those creative juices flowing, "I wonder if I could refashion one of those coats for Evie?" I headed home and threw the idea past my mom. She thought it was a great idea and even had a surprise for me, my Granny's wool coat so I was able to accomplish this:
My family is from Ireland and my Granny and Granddad never left the island. We were lucky enough to go stay with them for the summer every other year. My Granny was a very talented seamstress and an even more amazing knitter :)

I wish I had taken the opportunity to learn more from her. She and my Granddad passed away five years ago so I was touched (and extremely nervous) when my mom gave me her coat knowing that I was going to cut it up and there being a distinct possibility that it would not end well. I went to work taking the coat apart at the seams so that I could use ever little bit. I wanted to use a cuter fabric for the lining, which meant I was able to simply cut all that away which certainly made the process easier. Once I had everything taken apart I did something uncharacteristic for me and used a pattern as a guide. The Oliver and S School Days Coat pattern was a great reference, and although I did not use all of it it certainly helped me a long the way.
What is fantastic about using an old coat is that all the difficult parts are already done for you so the coat comes together incredibly fast! I have NEVER been very good at pockets. This time I simply made sure that they were correctly placed using one of the pattern pieces. Then I sewed the pocket lining so it was quiet a bit smaller (any treasures Evie needs to hide in her pockets are pretty small ha!).
This left me with an extremely professional looking pocket and hardly any effort.
The same is true for the center placket. I have never truly mastered the button hole maker on my sewing machine. Which is kinda sad because I avoid making them ha! Again using pattern pieces and some creative cutting I had them all pre-made for me!
The topstitching from the original coat again makes the shrunken version look much more professional:
The original coat had a turned over collar not a hood. This is where buying a larger coat is helpful. With the extra material I had I was able to easily make a hood for Evie's version. Which with how cold it gets here in the winter is a must!
Plus hoods show off the super cute lining you put in!
Because so many of the wonderful and time consuming details are already done for you this coat only took me a few hours to take apart and remake. I cannot wait to go back to the thrift store and find some totally outrageous color to remake!! You can't beat the price for a children's wool coat! I am so happy that my girls will be able to wear something that belonged to their Great Granny and we will absolutely be handing it down!
Although, I don't know how soon Evie will be letting me take some more pictures of her though ha! Thank you so much Cheri for being the catalyst for this project. I love having refashioned something as opposed to going out and plunking down a bunch of mola for a children's wool coat. This is refashion is honestly my favorite project thus far in my time as a blogger. I hope your readers are able to dig into their closets and make use of those unworn coats!
Cheers! Kelly

Thank you so much Kelly.  I am a sucker for anything with sentimental meaning and for your gorgeous pictures of your beautiful girl.  What an awesome thing to pass on.  You guys can leave a comment for Kelly here or visit her fantastic blog HERE.  Thanks for stopping by.


Gwen @ The Bold Abode said...

Bam! That's like a little miracle! A little, cute red one!

mama walker said...

WOW!! SKills SKills SKills!! Well done!!

Samantha said...

Very VERY cute! Awesome job!

Anonymous said...

OMG Kelly, that is amazing, um hi yes I will be heading to the DI as well!

Jayna Rae said...

AWESOME! I swear only Kelly can do that.

Mama Up! said...

Wow! What an amazing and also inspirational transformation! I got a free wool coat myself recently and have been debating whether I could turn one grownup coat into one 4t and one 5t coat for my daughter. Maybe I can!

Angela said...

I love it, you have mad sewing skills.


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