Get More Life Out of a Too Small Dress

I admit it.

I tend to shy away from refashioning things that are too small.

But thanks to Susan, from Second Chances by Susan, that’s not gonna happen anymore.

Nope, it’s not gonna happen anymore.

She inspired me to try adding panels to the sides of a dress and how right she was!


Click here for the step-by-step how to. I’ll be giving away a copy of The Refashion Handbook to one person who pins and comments on this article.

The Refashion Handbook

Thanks to all of you who commented on and pinned the jacket alteration post. The winner is…


Heidi Martin. Please send you address to and I’ll send the book out to you ASAP. :)

Have a wonderful day!


For more refashion inspiration:


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DIY: Celtic Knot Headband


Isn’t she beautiful!!! She’s a bit Celtic.

And I’m kind of fascinated with Celtic things.

I’d LOVE to take her to Scotland someday! If we’re ever lucky enough to travel there, the first thing on my agenda will be to head on over to our castle for a photo shoot!

“You have a castle in Scotland?” I can hear you asking.

Well, sort of.

You see, my maiden name is Crichton. Pronounced like Michael Crichton, the author of Jurassic Park. (Oh, so fun to name drop) And I am a direct descendent of Lord William Crichton, who was Chancellor of Scotland (1439-1443 & 1448-1454). This was his castle and even though it changed hands throughout the ages, it’s still called the Crichton Castle, so I’m going with it. :) Crichton Castle Stables


Perfect place for a photo shoot don’t you think?


Someday, I’ll go there and take some pictures of Brooke in this courtyard. In the meantime, Celtic knot headbands, and the beautiful, mystical Celtic music will have to tide us over until we get there someday.

Celtic knots are full of symbolism. They represent infinity and eternity because they don’t contain beginnings or ends. In ancient times, if a gift was adorned with a Celtic knot it was thought to give the recipient longevity or good luck in new adventures.

This no-sew, T-shirt headband is made with a Shannon knot which symbolizes balanced creativity.


Click here to see how you can make a Celtic knot headband from an old T-shirt. Just in time for St. Patrick’s Day. (Who was actually Scottish BTW)

I’d love to know what you think!


For more refashion inspiration:


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How to Alter a Jacket

March is coming in like a lamb for all of us in Eastern Oregon. This is the time of year when jackets become a great transitional wardrobe piece. You can wear them with a lightweight sweater or T-shirt underneath, but a well-fitting, modern jacket can be elusive to find off the rack.


Instead of leaving that too-big jacket with the nice fabric in the dressing room, take it home instead. With a few simple changes, you can make it fit perfectly.


You can see the step-by-step photo instructions here.

To thank you for taking the time to check out this jacket alteration, I’d like to give away another copy of The Refashion Handbook to one of you who comments and pins.

Thanks to everyone who took the time to check out and share last week’s Snow Skirt article.


The winner of The Refashion Handbook is….

The Refashion Handbook

Linda Thornton. Send your address to me at and I’ll send it out to you ASAP.

I also want to thank all of you who have taken the time to write a 5 Star Review on The Refashion Handbook over at Amazon. If you’ve read the book and haven’t had a chance to write one yet, I’d really appreciate it. The mysterious and powerful Amazon algorithms love 5 Star Reviews and in turn promote the books with more reviews.

For more refashion inspiration:

The secret to removing that unsightly pilling from your clothes

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Make Your Own Snow Skirt From an Old Jacket

OK, all my friends and family still dwelling in the clutches of old man winter, here’s a fun sewing project to help keep your buns warm and look great at the same time.


Make a cute snow skirt from an old jacket.

Don’t you just love this label!


My fun and stylish friend, Linda, found this old “jaquette” at our thrift store and was inspired to create a cute snow skirt to wear to the upcoming Snow Blast at Anthony Lakes Ski Resort in March.


We headed up those 32 studio steps together and she let me photograph her process so I could share it with you.


Click here to get the step by step directions.


To thank you, once again for taking the time to go over to this tutorial, I’d like to give another copy of my new book The Refashion Handbook to one of you. All you have to do to enter is pin the tutorial to one of your Pinterest boards and make a comment.

The Refashion Handbook

The winner from last week’s Look Cooking-Show Chic in This Apron Made From an Old Shirt post is…


Maggie Ragatz! Congratulations and send your address to and I’ll send it to you ASAP!

I also have another huge favor to ask of you. If you have read The Refashion Handbook and you haven’t had a chance to write a five star review over on Amazon, my family and I would be forever in your debt if you would take the time to write one. The magical Amazon algorithms love five star reviews. The more a book has, the more they promote the book. Thank you so much for all of your support and encouragement!

For more refashion inspiration:


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Bootcut to Skinny Jeans in 5 Easy Steps

Bootcut to Skinny

I know it’s early, but it seems as though spring has arrived in Eastern Oregon. The signs are everywhere. Daffodils, crocus, blue skies, warm temperatures and skinny jeans. Yep, skinny jeans and cute shoes. I’ve been seeing them everywhere! Don’t get me wrong, I love my boots, but nothing says spring like bringing out the cute shoe collection again. And what better way to show off your fun flats, summer sandals, wedges and heels than wearing them with skinny jeans.

If you’re like me and have a closet full of bootcut jeans, click here to see how to quickly change them into skinny jeans and bring them into spring 2015.

The nice thing about this tutorial, is you can make them to fit you perfectly. If SUPER tight skinnies aren’t your thing, you can make them a bit more relaxed.

For those of you still in the clutches of winter, like my sister in Minnesota, who seriously, just sent me a picture of her thermometer this morning reading -31, you can still make some of these skinny jeans to wear with your boots….just a thought to get you through to your spring.


I’d love to know what you think, so I’ll be giving away a copy of the Refashion Handbook. Just click over to my tutorial at eHow, pin it to one of your Pinterest boards and make a comment to have your name entered into the giveaway.


Thanks you SEW much for all of your support and encouragement!!!


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Look Cooking-Show Chic in This Apron Made From a Shirt

Pretty sure my future is much more likely to include my own sewing show and not my own cooking show. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve got a few dishes that my sweet, ruggedly handsome husband is sure could make us millions, like my Ham and Cheese Chowder or my Wild Rice Meatballs. But my repertoire of edible meals is definitely much smaller than my sewing portfolio.

But even if you’re like me and have limited cooking skills, there’s no reason not to at least look cooking-show chic while you cook. Refashioned from an old button-down shirt, this apron features coordinating pockets and a colorful waistband for a fashionable twist.




You can see the complete tutorial here. I’d love to know what you think of it, so if you leave a comment and pin it on one of your Pinterest boards, your name will be entered in a drawing to win a copy of The Refashion Handbook

The Refashion Handbook

Thanks to everyone who pinned and commented on last week’s refashioned shirt tutorial.

The winner of the Refashion Handbook is:


Tami Geiken Lee!

Send your address to me at and I’ll send it out to you ASAP.

For more refashion inspiration:


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Give a Boxy Shirt and Sweater A New Feminine Silhouette

Why, oh why, do I do this every winter?

Those snacks and treats that I would NEVER pay any attention to, much less have a relationship with in the summer keep finding their way into my life and into my mouth this time of year. French fries, donuts, and yes, even large quantities of cheese puffs seem harmless to me when it’s cold and dreary outside.

Until one day, my little “I Can Eat Anything I Want” fantasy turns into a “Getting Dressed in the Morning” nightmare. As one outfit after another is rejected and thrown on the floor and the pile becomes bigger and bigger, I wonder who’s body has taken me hostage. Each outfit is abandoned as it literally stretches the limits of appropriate work wear and my options become very limited.

That’s when I reach for those boxy shirts and sweaters.

Although they may be comfortable and hide a multitude of sins, let’s face it, for some of us– they do nothing for our well fed figures. But if you combine two boxy shirts you can create an entirely new look. By adding a little elastic to the waistline, you can create a shirt/sweater combo that is both comfortable and has a more flattering silhouette.



So set down that bag of cheese puffs and wear off a few calories by clicking here to see the entire tutorial: :)


To wear off even more calories and for your chance to win a copy of my new book, The Refashion Handbook, just leave a comment and pin the tutorial to one of your Pinterest boards. I’ll announce the winner next week.

The Refashion Handbook

The winner from last week’s Sweater Slipper post is…


Tamara Greetham Krick!

Congratulations and please send your address to me at so I can send it out to you.

For more refashion inspiration:


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DIY: Sweater Slippers


Most days I wake up and when my feet hit the floor, I’m accomplishing things. Whether it’s laundry and dishes, heading to work, or creating some content for eHow, there is always something on my agenda. Most of the time, I love being busy, it’s who I am. But there are those days, like yesterday, when I force myself to stop, slow down, and breathe. I didn’t even get out of my pajamas. Gasp!

There was something very comforting about giving myself a day off and wearing these soft, handmade, sweater slippers all day long.


And no, I didn’t knit them. Knitting and I haven’t become friends yet. I made them from an old sweater a few weeks ago and I gotta say, they are so cute and comfy, I wish I could wear them everyday!



If you’d like to make a pair of upcycled sweater slippers for yourself or for someone you love, click here for the full tutorial.


And if you’d like to win a copy of my new book, The Refashion Handbook, just pin the tutorial and leave a comment. The winner will be announced next week.

The Refashion Handbook

For more refashion inspiration, click here:


Stay comfy,


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DIY: Deer Head Silhouette Sweater

I have a love/hate relationship with deer.

When twenty of them are milling around the field in front of my picture windows with the snow covered Eagle Cap mountains rising up behind them, I’m totally in love.

But, when they are munching on my tomatoes, the love leaves quickly and Cooper’s pellet gun starts to look like a very good idea.

So instead of target practice, I asked that ruggedly handsome (and artistic) husband of mine to draw a deer head silhouette, grabbed a sweater and some plaid, and got right to work making a deer we can enjoy all the time and, I promise, it will never eat your garden.


To see the full tutorial and for your chance to win a copy of  The Refashion Handbook, click here. Just visit the tutorial, pin and leave a comment so your name will be entered to win.

You can download the pattern here:

deer head silhouette

The winner from last week’s pom pom sweater hat post is:


Mother Deer!

Congratulations and please send your address to and I’ll send it out to you right away. :) Thank you so much for all of your nice comments!

Well, I was very busy last weekend with a new exciting adventure that I can’t wait to tell you about very soon….

Stay warm…


For more refashion inspiration:


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The Refashion Handbook: A Best Seller!!! WHAT?!!???!

The Refashion Handbook

I have to admit, I’ve become a bit of a numbers nerd.

Data and numbers never used to roll my socks up and down. As a matter of fact, I used to cringe when the word data was used. (Remember Marty ;) ) But, since I started blogging, numbers have slowly become my friend. Numbers and I have coffee together in the mornings, spend some time together for lunch and say good night to each other every night.

In addition to checking out my blog stats, once in awhile, I check out Amazon and see how The Refashion Handbook is ranking. They update the ranking every hour and this morning, thanks to you guys, it was in the top 100 books in Sewing and in Fashion/Crafts!!!! The Refashion Handbook was right there next to Amy Butler’s book, Style Stitches and Clinton Kelly’s book, Freakin’ Fabulous on a Budget. 

How “Freakin’ Fabulous” is that!!!!

Thank you so much for writing those 5-star reviews, buying the book and being excited with me. This book writing thing has been quite the adventure and it’s been fun to have all of you along for the ride!!

The other day, I received a tweet from the fun and talented Jenniffer Taylor (from the The Great British Sewing Bee) saying that she had just promoted The Refashion Handbook, live, on the British show Create and Craft TV. LOVED listening to them talk about The Renegade Seamstress in their British accents. I REALLY want to hang out with Jenniffer Taylor, I know we are kindred spirits!! (If you check out the show, click on the UK popup (not the US one) and The Refashion Handbook appears around minute 13.)

Stay tuned for some more exciting news……

(How’s that for a teaser? :) )

Happy Thursday!


And don’t forget to check out this week’s post for your chance to win some prizes:


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