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Summer Re-styling

During my brief spurts of isolation organization, two garment restyling projects were unearthed.  Each was a pre-Fit for Art top that needed a DIY sewing wardrobe update.  It was a fun challenge.

The ill fitting linen top, ready to be deconstructed.

Project #1

The beige linen print top featured an extended shoulder style.  I loved the fabric and the double-breasted front closure, but I no longer feel comfortable in sleeveless looks. Especially ones that did not fit well in the first place!  I visited my boxes of linen stash and found several pieces that would coordinate.  I planned to add the TRJ square armhole sleeve and side to the fronts and back I loved.  Knowing what sections of the top would be needed, the fabric edit was not too difficult.

Placing the pattern and cutting away the extra.

First, I took apart the side seams and laid my Tabula Rasa Jacket (TRJ) front and back pattern over the top, connecting them along the seam lines at the shoulders.  Once pinned in place, I cut away the extra fabric that had been the side and extended shoulder of the original top.  Using a soft tweedy linen blend, I cut out my TRJ basic summer sleeve pattern. A darker brown linen was used to cut the side panels.

In a happy coincidence, there was a bit of the original yardage in the linen stash bucket, enough to cut lantern sleeve cuffs.  Our downloadable Sleeve and Cuff Variation pattern includes these sleeve and cuff patterns as part of a fun package of cuff options for the TRJ.

The finished top!

This little restyling project went together quickly and I am enjoying wearing this most favorite linen print again, in a more comfortable configuration.

Project #2

The second restyle is really the rescue of an “Unfinished Object” or “UFO”.  I began this cotton shirt in 2008 while working on an article for Threads #143, June/July 2009 issue, called Playing Doubles.  The front, back and collars were constructed but the shirt was never finished.  When I found the UFO, it had easy set-in sleeves already cut out along with a pair of flouncy striped cuffs.  Maybe that is why I never finished the top.  The flouncy sleeve seemed out of place with the crisp classic shirt collars.

Once again, I used my TRJ front and back pattern pieces positioned on the partially constructed top, and joined at the shoulders, to cut away the fabric that would have formed the original relaxed set-in sleeve construction.  I had extra fabric in both the cotton/poly walking the dog print and the blue and white stripe rayon.  A short sleeve, cuffs and side panels were cut from the striped rayon remains and a second set of cuffs was cut from the walking the dog print.  The straight stacked cuffs repeat the stacked collar, which felt just right. Visit the early spring post, A New Shirt from Black Remnants, to see how I stitched and folded the comfortable cuff in place. Keep an eye on Instagram and Facebook for more images this week.


The shirt, completed.

These tops are fun additions to my everyday summer wardrobe and of course every summer wardrobe can use a pick me up.

Restyle something for your own Wardrobe

Did you resurrect any old projects or ill-fitting garments during the pandemic?   Why not give it a try using your tried-and-true TRJ pattern and some of its variations while keeping the fun details you love from the original garment.  Or bring along your restyling projects to our November retreat, and we can make a plan together.

Happy Sewing, RAE

3 thoughts on “Summer Re-styling

  1. Both projects look really nice! 🙂

    1. Thanks Linda, totally wardrobe pick me ups!

  2. I love both of these restyled tops. Great examples of mixing different fabrics in the same garment.

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