02 03 Gallimaufry Grove: Refashioning a Too Small Top 04 05 15 16 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 31 32 33

Refashioning a Too Small Top

Remember my Refashion Friday Rules?  I can't spend more than 20 minutes in the thrift store. Each piece has to be cheap, cheap.  And I can't try anything on.  Which means I don't know how well things fit until I get them home and washed.

Usually I buy things that are several sizes too big, but I really liked this top so I took a chance even though it didn't look enormous.  The print is fun and the length is great.  What's not to love? Well, there was a little problem.  As in, this top is too little.  

It almost fits.  If I suck it in and walk around like that all day, it looks fine.  See?

As long as I don't breathe, everything will be okay.  
Except I don't do well when I don't breathe, so something has to give.  
Good news, though:

First, I chopped off the sleeves a bit, because I live in the south and it's hot here.  Bye-Bye, Sleevies.

Then I searched my closet for ideas.  The Too-Small-Top is a knit, so I needed a coordinating knit.  I found this knit dress that was cute in its day, but it has attracted a few too many stains for my taste -- unless I want to wear it while painting the house or something.  But then there's the problem of climbing a ladder in a dress.  Oh well...it was a perfect match for some of the flowers in my Too-Small-Top print.

Next, I cut the side seams of Too-Small-Top very carefully.  If I were a professional, I would have picked the seams, but I'm not a professional.  I'm a busy mom.  I cut the seams off.   I stayed right next to the stitching, though, so I could preserve as much of the fabric as possible.  I cut up the side seams, right up under the arm hole and to the end of the (now short) sleeve.

Then I cut two strips from the old teal dress, avoiding the stains.  I kept the bottom hem, because it will save me time later.  My strips are about 4 inches wide.  After the seam allowance, they will be about 3 - 3 1/2 inches wide.  I made them longer than my top, so I would have plenty of length.

Then I just sewed those strips in where the side seams were all the way under the arm and to the end of the sleeve.  I started at the bottom hem, so I could match the hemline on the strips with the hemline on the top.  That way I can skip hemming.  I liked the length as is, so I didn't want to shorten it with a new hem.  I did this on both sides.

After my sides were done, I turned up my sleeve edges and hemmed them with a 1/4 inch seam allowance.

And that's it.  I have plenty of breathing room now.  And I have cool side stripes.

But do you want to know the coolest part?  I did it all in about 30 minutes (much faster than the diet required for me to wear it as it was).  It's proof that just because something is too small, it doesn't mean you can't wear it.

Here's the side by side:

Would you ever consider doing a refashion?

Have a great day,


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