Sew wear are they now? 2015 edition – what happened to the things I sewed in 2015
I decided to look back on some of my older makes and reflect on their life history.
I started recording what clothes I wear on a daily basis from 11 Oct 2019 so prior to this date number of wears are estimates but after that they are accurate.
I bought a sewing machine in 2015 and it has changed my life…. well my wardrobe anyway.
I habitually bought second hand clothes at charity shops, so the first clothing items to be tackled were refashions.
I refashioned 13 items in 2015, 4 of which I still have, so here is the life history of some of my 2015 makes.
Dress and skirt to dress refashion:
The first item I ever blogged was this dress, the bodice of which was made from the skirt of a well worn RTW dress which I owned and the skirt was made from a drill type fabric 2nd hand skirt.
With this item I had beginners luck because the dress was a good fit, probably due to knit fabric on the top, and was comfortable to wear. It looks like a skirt and t-shirt but is more comfortable because there was no waistband. I loved the before dress and refashioned it because the armpits were getting a little grotty.
positives – comfortable and nice fit
negatives – weight of skirt tended to drag the bodice down a little
estimated number of wears – at least 20 in this re-incarnation and at least 20 as the before dress.
score 9 out of 10
I can’t remember when I discarded this dress but it must have been at least 3 years ago and the component parts had a final life as cleaning cloths in my home.
Shirt made bigger
This was my 2nd make and a found item which I noticed in a bin bag near my home, picking it out with the intention of using it as a fabric source. I actually ended up making the shirt fit me by sewing a rudimentary triangle into the back to make it bigger, the fabric for which came from shortening the shirt considerably. The reason I did this was because when I tried it on I was surprised how good a fit the shoulders and arms turned out to be. This shirt is something of a curiosity to me even now because the armholes are a perfect fit and I can lift my arms up and the body of the shirt does not move at all.
positives – perfect armhole fit
negatives – triangle on the back looks a bit odd and the side seams are thrown quite a bit forward as a result.
estimated number of wears – 20
score 5 out of 10 good fit but not many wears.
I have kept this shirt for sleeve fit reference and wore it 10 times in 2020 but then retired it from my wardrobe.
Party dress to gypsy skirt refashion
I bought a too small dress 2nd hand because I liked the fabric which was a mid weight cotton with some stretch. I made it into a skirt and added a denim ruffle at the hemline. I really enjoyed wearing this skirt because it was comfortable and had some structure.
positives – good design and fit
negatives – the fastening wasn’t very well done
estimated number of wears – 30
score 8 out of 10
I no longer have this skirt and threw it away at least 3 years ago as the fabric was pretty faded.
Club Tr Op icana t-shirt refashion
This is pretty typical of the refashions I was doing at the time. I bought a lightly worn t-shirt with a logo I didn’t like, lowered the neckline and created a pleated ruffle to cover it up. This refashion was pretty successful and got enough wears at the time
positives – fairly good design and fit
negatives – the neckline gaped a bit
estimated number of wears – 20
score 7 out of 10
I no longer have this t-shirt and threw it away at least 3 years ago as it was looking worn. It probably had a final life as a cleaning cloth.
Refashioners 2015 entry – alternative angles
Seen below in 2015 (on left) and now
This shirt refashion was my entry for therefashioners challenge for 2015 which was to refashion a men’s button down shirt. I was, and still am, quite proud of my creativity in this make as I turned the shirt round 180 degrees so a former armhole became the neckline, and did the rest of the construction by draping, re-attaching the shirt collar with some added trim and re-positioning the pockets as one at the front. I could have probably done with a bigger sized shirt as this was a bit of a limitation. This top has a limited hot weather wearing season due to the low back but I do like it, and the pocket was useful on holidays for small items like tickets or credit cards.
positives – creative design
negatives – limited wearing season, its a bit snug on the bust
estimated number of wears – 15 including 5 in 2020
score 8 out of 10
I still have this top and intend to wear it some more this year. I will probably keep it long term as I am quite attached to it.
Keep your cloth as long as you can as long as you can shirt refashion
Don’t seen to have a 2015 photo of me wearing it so this is now:
With no time to plan I bought this men’s shirt new for a particular event and paid £40 for it. It was too tight on the hips and too long, so after wearing for the event I decided to shorten it and make a shaped hemline.
I made a mistake and cut too much off the length. In addition poor armhole fit made the shirt ride up and expose my midriff, so I made a 2nd refashion of adding some knit fabric to the armpit area. This helped a bit but not enough. Having just tried this on again I am determined to bring it back into use as I now have more high waisted trousers and skirts it could be worn with comfortably.
positives – quality fabric
negatives – too short which limits wear
estimated wears – 10 but none since oct 2019
score – 2 out of 10
I still have this shirt as it was too good to throw out and did use the trimmed hemline piece for some other garment but can’t remember what now. I haven’t worn it for a long time but it will get 10 wears this year or my name’s not Helen.
That concludes my 2015 review. I haven’t included everything but a representative sample. The original blog post are still there if you wish to look. I used to favour making tops and so I am planning to target wearing some out this year. My records are showing me that most items will be looking quite worn after 40 wears and ready for retirement.
3 thoughts on “Sew wear are they now? 2015 edition – what happened to the things I sewed in 2015”
April 7, 2021 at 10:52 pm
So good to hear everything about sewing projects. I love all the decision and construction detail but I also love hearing about the how the finished item worked in real life.
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April 8, 2021 at 7:13 am
Yes I am interested in what people have in their wardrobes and how often they wear individual items because I don’t know what ‘in constant rotation’ or ‘worn loads’ actually translate to in number of wears. As every garment we make is a prototype its inevitable there will be misjudgements about what will be liked enough to wear often.
April 8, 2021 at 9:07 am
Agree. I’ve been sometimes surprised how much I like and wear some things I sew, and vice versa
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