Create a Winter Sweater Tote From an Old Houndstooth Sweater


New Year’s Eve is on the way.

Ring in the new year with this adorable DIY winter sweater tote.


Along with all of the self-improvement resolutions you make this New Year’s Eve, be sure to include a declaration to make a new sweater tote to go with your winter outfits. If they all turn out this cute, it’s a resolution that’ll be easy to keep.


All you need is an old thrift store sweater….

winter sweater tote before

a couple of wooden handles and some cute fabric for a lining.


It’ll take you less than an hour to make and when you’re finished you’ll have a cute winter tote perfect for carrying your laptop and your favorite book. ;)


Click here for the complete tutorial and for your chance to win a copy of my new book, The Refashion Handbook.

The Refashion Handbook

All you have to do is pin and comment to be entered in the drawing.

Last week’s winner from the Cozy Cardigan Cowl post is…


Della Carr Bryan!

Congratulations and thank you so much for your wonderful comment! Send your address to and I’ll send it out to you right away.

For another chance to win a copy of TheRefashion Handbooksend a picture of yourself with your copy of the book to to be posted on Where in the World is The Refashion Handbook throughout the month of January.

For more refashion inspiration:


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Where in the World is The Refashion Handbook? Send Your “Selfie” and Win!

Apparently, The Refashion Handbook is traveling worldwide!

It made it’s way all the way into Siegrid’s hands in Austria last week.

Back in October, Jennifer let me know that she received her copy of The Refashion Handbook in Australia.

Lyn spotted it in her local library in Golden, Colorado.

And my friend Cathy, sent a picture of herself next to The Refashion Handbook on the “Editor’s Picks” shelf at Powell’s Books in Portland, Oregon.

Which got me thinking about how fun it would be to post your selfies with The Refashion Handbook here on The Renegade Seamstress.

And of course to make it even more fun, I’ve made a giveaway contest out of it. One of you will be chosen to receive a signed copy of The Refashion Handbook to give as a gift, the Felted Wool Cup Cozy, a Flannel Fringe Scarf and a Faux Fur Collar.

So take a picture of yourself with your copy of The Refashion Handbook (get as creative as you’d like) and send it to and let us know where in the world you are. I’ll be posting your pictures throughout the month of January.

Of course, you remember my selfie, back in August, the day I received the advance copy on my doorstep.


I hope you have fun with this, and I’m really looking forward to seeing all of your “selfies”!

Happy Holidays!


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Create a Cozy Cardigan Cowl and Boot Socks From an Old Sweater in 10 Minutes or Less

Whoa! It’s December 21.

Only four days left.

How did THAT happen?

As a teacher, I get so caught up in all the school festivities that gift making and shopping for my own family doesn’t usually begin until the first day of winter break.

For me, when I wake up on my first day of vacation, I put on my running shoes, do a few warm ups and then it’s…..

on your mark, get set, GO!

Let the sewing begin!

So, if you’re anything like me and your creation marathon has just begun, here is a tutorial for a quick and easy upcycled cozy cardigan cowl and some boots socks for a lucky someone still on your gift list.



Click here for the entire tutorial and your chance to win a copy of The Refashion Handbook.

To be entered, just leave a comment and pin the cardigan cowl tutorial and I’ll announce the winner next Saturday, December 27.

The Refashion Handbook

The winner from last week’s wrapping paper post is:


Lisa Andreen.

Send your address to and I’ll send your book out ASAP.

For more handmade gift ideas click here:


Happy Holidays!


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DIY: Snowflake Wrapping Paper With a Pine Branch, a Winner and Another Giveaway


Up until yesterday, I think I was the only person on the planet who hadn’t seen the movie “Frozen.”

As a matter of fact, one mom told me (as she was handing me the DVD with a smile on her face) that I had no business being a kindergarten teacher without having seen it. So, not wanting to be behind the times, I grabbed some popcorn and a soda, popped the movie into my DVD player and quickly watched it. I now see why it is a phenomenon for both boys and girls — definitely a delightful movie.

So this holiday season, in keeping with a “Frozen” theme, you and your family can make some cool snowflake wrapping paper together that even Olaf would love.

Click here for the tutorial.

Thank you so much for pinning and commenting on last week’s Flannel and Fringe Scarf Tutorial.


The winner of The Refashion Handbook is Cindy Finney McMurray.

The Refashion Handbook

Congratulations, Cindy! Send your address to and I’ll get it out right away.

To win a book this week, all you have to do is pin and comment on the Snowflake Wrapping Paper post and I’ll announce the winner next Saturday, December 20.

I hope to see you at the book signing at Looking Glass Books today at 1:00.

Looking Glass Books

For more refashion inspiration:


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You’re Invited to a Book Signing Party at Looking Glass Books This Saturday

Looking Glass Books

Jessica and Greg at Looking Glass Books, in LaGrande, Oregon, are graciously opening their beautiful shop to host The Refashion Handbook Book Signing this Saturday, December 13th at 1:00.

Please join us for some holiday refreshments and to get your signed copy of The Refashion Handbook.

There will be plenty of books available for all of the seamstresses or wannabe sewists on your Christmas list. :)

Plus, I’d really love to see you!

The Refashion Handbook


See you Saturday!


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Sign Up For My BurdaStyle Webinar Today and Win

Today, at 11:00 EST, I’ll be presenting live for BurdaStyle:

Refashion: Inspiration and Projects to Revamp and Recycle Your Wardrobe for Less

Burdastyle magazine

You can sign up here, and even if you aren’t able to attend the live version you will receive a recorded version that you can watch anytime and as many times as you’d like.

When you sign up, it’s yours to keep.

One lucky participant will win a copy of The Refashion Handbook. The winner will be announced at the end of the webinar today.

The Refashion Handbook

I hope to see you there!


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How to Make a Plaid Flannel Fringe Scarf and Two Giveaways


Little did my mom know that when she declared the Christmas of 1971 as a “Handmade Holiday,” she changed my life forever. I can still remember feeling so honored and loved when even my dad, who was Mr. Busy and Mr. Uncrafty, spent time putting together presents he thought we would enjoy.  The huge mosaic he made from our shag carpet remnants hung on the wall above the piano for years. The fabric-covered hanging lamp he made for me hung above my bed until I went to college. It was this Christmas that began my own “Handmade Journey.”

Today, I’m still on that journey. It has become such a part of who I am today. All seems right with the world when I’m able to design, create and share my sewing adventures with you.

If you’ve declared your own Handmade Holiday this season, a flannel fringe scarf is an easy, stylish gift to make for anyone on your list.



Click here for the rest of the fringe scarf tutorial.

And to thank those of you who take the time to check it out, pin and comment, I’ll be giving away another copy of The Refashion Handbook to one of you. (Just in time for Christmas :) )

The Refashion Handbook

The winner from last week’s Festive Faux Fur Collar tutorial is…..


Dawn Wigget.

Congratulations Dawn! Send your address to and I’ll send your book to you ASAP.

In other news:

I hope you can join me for my live BurdaStyle Webinar this Monday, December 8 at 11:00 EST. At the end of the webinar, we’ll be giving away a copy of The Refashion Handbook to one one lucky participant.

I hope it’s you…………. :)

Burdastyle magazine

For more sewing and refashion inspiration click here:


Happy Handmade Holidays!


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Mom, BurdaStyle is on the Phone For You Again!

 I love BurdaStyle!

I love BurdaStyle!

I love BurdaStyle!

I’ll say it again, I love BurdaStyle!

Not only do they have a wonderful on-line community; always helpful, always teaching, and beautiful patterns, but everyone who works for them is so nice!

So you can imagine how flattered I was to have them ask me to do another live webinar for them.

I hope you can join me next Monday, December 8 at 11:00 EST for

Refashion: Inspiration and Projects to Revamp and Recycle Your Wardrobe For Less

Click here for more information and to sign up:

Burdastyle magazine

For more refashion inspiration:


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Make a Festive Faux Fur Collar To Attend Your Holiday Parties in Style


It’s no secret that I love parties!

The bigger, the better. The more the merrier. So many reasons for a party, so little time. I truly am a walking party cliche. :)

To me, one of the best things about the holiday parties (besides the cranberry salsa) is the opportunity to dress up. A faux fur collar is such a festive holiday accessory and they are super easy to make.


So, grab some faux fur, lining, newsprint, scissors, a measuring tape, a marker, come with me to eHow and I’ll show you how easy it is to make.




To thank you for pinning, sharing and commenting on the eHow Faux Fur Collar post, I will enter your name into a drawing for a copy of  The Refashion Handbook.

The Refashion Handbook

If you’d like to refashion a prom, wedding or formal dress for your holiday parties, check out Amy’s post:

55 Intelligent and Fun Ways to Refashion Prom, Wedding or Formal Dresses.


And for even more refashion inspiration click here:


Happy Holidays!


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DIY: Winter Scarf Camera Strap and a Winner

Oh, baby! It’s been cold around here.

Not that it’s a bad thing.

As a matter of fact, the cold can make for some delightful trips to town. A few days ago, the frigid air was perfectly still and the huge bare trees that line the highway were covered in thick white frost. The sun had just peeked over the Eagle Cap Mountains, creating the perfect light against the deep blue sky.

Absolutely breathtaking!

There’s only one thing that would’ve made it better.


I told myself right then and there, I was going to keep my camera handy at all times. So of course, making a stylish camera strap from one of my scarves was definitely next on the agenda.

This is so easy, you could make one to go with all of your outfits. It would also make a great gift for those photogs in your life.

The sky is definitely the limit when you make a camera strap from a scarf. They are one of my favorite accessories and I seem to pick one up every time I hit the thrift shops.


Click here for the full camera strap tutorial. I’d love to know what you think.


And a big thank you to those of you who checked out, pinned, shared and commented on last week’s Felted Wool Cup Cozy tutorial.


The winner of , The Refashion Handbook is…

Dawn Jones!

Please send your address to and I’ll send the book to you ASAP.

The Refashion Handbook

For more refashion inspiration, click here to check out one of the projects from The Refashion Handbook featured in Mother Earth News:

Refashioned-Dress-Media jpg

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