We can all feel the worst time of the year looming around the corner, the dreaded day when we must pack up our entire wardrobe before classes begin. It’s during this process that I personally begin to realize the massive amounts of clothing I hardly wear anymore. It feels like nothing still catches my eye, yet I’m still exerting every ounce of effort in my body to get it crammed into a suitcase.
The shopaholic in me instantly thinks, “Time for a new school wardrobe!” However, the broke college student in me realizes this just isn’t possible. This is where compromise has to come in. Either somehow sell everything I no longer wear (usually resulting in me suddenly realizing how little I want to let things go) or find ways to convert my existing wardrobe into something new.
Now I am by no means a sewing master or fashion designer. I have a lot of ideas in my head that I seem to have a hard time turning into concrete results, but I’ve found with a little patience and a lot of internet tutorials, anything is possible. Sometimes one simple change to a clothing item can make all the difference and a huge reconstruction process is not necessary.
This Fashionista is wearing a patterned dress she altered by removing flutter sleeves for a more clean cut look. She layered a denim vest on top, which she tied in order to cinch the waist. The entire outfit has a summery feel and the denim gives it an extra dose of casual. She accessorizes with a satchel and simple brass accessories. The shoes have a low heel for added flair without losing comfort.
One can follow this Fashionista’s example by starting with knots. A button-down dress shirt, denim jacket or cardigan is given a fun spin with just a tie at the waist. Maxi skirts can also be tied up, giving the outfit a new kind of movement and showing a little leg by a knot above the knee.
The maxi skirt is one of the easiest pieces to convert. They can be cut to varying lengths, even playing with the high-low look. Existing high-low skirts can be easily turned to the side for an asymmetrical look. If you are a more advanced seamstress, convert the skirt into gaucho shorts.
When it comes to tops, cut off the sleeves for a new tank top or vest. Sew those old sleeves into a cut-off denim jacket for a layered look. Want a new dress? Cut an old tank top or T-shirt to a shorter length and attach it to a skirt for a new tank dress.
You can even have fun with color by going to the nearest craft store for RIT dye or use bleach for a more distressed look. Small things like studs, patches, lace and fabric swatches can be added to old clothing for new detailing. Don’t give up on that old wardrobe yet. Just take some time to get crafting and turn entire pieces around.