Epiphany Blouse and Upcoming Projects for Reconstruction Challenge

BurdaStyle is hosting the Project Runway Remake Challenge, hosted by Rowena. It is based on the challenge from the first episode of this season’s Project Runway. Here’s the gist of the contest, from BurdaStyle:

“On the first episode of this season’s Project Runway, contestants were asked to take an item of clothing from another designer’s wardrobe and refashion it into a brand new garment. We know our BurdaStyle members are just as creative and we’ve decided to give you the chance to show your stuff in our very own Project Runway competition.

So here’s the deal: we want you to take an existing garment from your closet and turn it into something new! Sounds simple enough, but we’re looking for a little bit more than putting new buttons on a jacket. We want you to really dig in and repurpose those old pieces into new functional, wearable garments while still utilizing as much of the original as possible.”

If you would like some more information, the previous passage and the guidelines are located here: http://www.burdastyle.com/blog/project-runway-remake-challenge-presented-by-rowenta.

Contestants are allowed to use articles of clothing that aren’t explicitly from their closet. I decided however, that I would play by the rules that are stated on BurdaStyle. The written description of the contest says “from your closet,” so I’m using things that are only expressly from my closet (i.e. no recent thrift store finds, etc). I will only reconstruct garments that were indeed previously in my closet, etc (including some of Alex’s things).

Anyway, I was really excited about it the other day when I found out. So, I have about ten things that I have visions for. We’ll see how many I get through by the deadline; the deadline is September 30.

Below is a preview of my reconstruction line-up:

Two coats I don’t where anymore, a dress I bought from eBay that turned out to be much different than I expected (in a bad way), another dress, and a robe.

One coat...

Two coat

one large, men's bathrobe

Une robe verte...

Une robe bleue...

There is one more garment that I’m considering, but I don’t think I’ll even get through the one’s already listed. I have some pretty time consuming ideas for some of them.

There is one exception to the “out of my closet” restriction, however; I am going to be reconstructing a wedding dress into another garment. It was given to me by a friend (thanks!), after we tried dyeing it and she wasn’t a fan of the outcome (the lace came out very pink).

I’m currently working on the long and slow process of removing all of the beading and lace. I’ll let you in on my secret plans as I get further along in the process.

Now for an update on the top portion of the tall man’s shirt from Monday.

I constructed a blouse with the aid of some recycled material.

Remember the long black t-shirt with butterflies?

The butterfly shirt--I used a portion of it in a previously blogged project.

I used the back of what was left of it to create the bottom half of the top.

I measured and cut the bodice to my desired specifications, marking where I wanted to gather at the bust. Removing the collar was a necessity, as was cutting the neckline down.

Collar removed

I planned to use the old collar to create little caplet sleeves.

One of the old sleeve cuffs would become a button tab. I detached the cuffs from the sleeves, removed the buttons, folded the cuffs right sides together and prepped to sew the new seam of the button tab.

Prepping the button tab

Then, I pulled the tab through, ironed it and re-affixed the button.

The tab is ready to be inserted at the side of the banded hem

The next step was attaching the button tab at the side seam of the banded hem.

Once the new seams and neckline of the top of the shirt were sewn, I attached it to the bottom of the shirt.

I then added the little caps. First, I had to sew them to the right side of the shirt, with the edges of the armholes ironed down.

Second, I ironed the seam allowance toward the middle of the bodice, and sewed around the outside edge of the armhole (on the right side of the garment).

Ironed and ready to be sewn

To add some extra flare, I had cut out some material to make a ruffle from the bottom of the old bodice.

I just sewed the long strip, finished the edges, basted down the middle of the strip, and gathered it. I then pinned the strip around the neckline (which was ironed and finished), and finished it all up.


This top will not appeal to everyone’s taste, but it is unique and fun.

I didn't iron the collar down yet, lol...sorry.

About Becca

I am a self-taught seamstress, and I love to create unique women’s clothing. This blog is a record of the hodgepodge of sewing projects that occupy my time. Reconstruction projects are my favorite, but I also create clothing from my own designs using both recycled and new materials.
This entry was posted in clothing, diy, indie, recycled, repurposed, retro, sewing, shirt, thrifted, Uncategorized, upcycled, vintage and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Epiphany Blouse and Upcoming Projects for Reconstruction Challenge

  1. Stephanie says:

    Wow! Nice work! And I’m really looking forward to seeing what you do with those other pieces. I may need to get in on this contest 🙂

  2. Candy says:

    Wow, that turned out really cute! Love the neckline on this dress. It’s flirty and fun!

  3. Wendy in Portland says:

    Hi, have you done anything with the coats yet? I’m so curious–I haven’t seen anyone refashion/redesign coats, and I have 2 in my closet just waiting for some creativity!!

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