Drab Olive Green T-Shirt Blooms

Apparently I like olive green, because I seem to have a lot of tops in this color. After awhile it gets boring though so I thought I’d apply my generally not-so-green thumb to this t-shirt to see if I could get it to blossom into something a little more interesting. Had enough of the bad puns? Me too. Let’s get sewing.

Once again I jumped right in, forgetting to take a before picture. I searched the Internet trying to find a pic of the Kimchi Blue top but couldn’t find one so you’re just going to have to trust me that it was pretty blah before I started.

I have a box of embroidery pieces in my refashion stash which I dumped out onto my top and started playing around with until I had what I wanted. The backs of these flowers are sticky which makes it easy to play with the positioning. Tip: if you have embroidery pieces that you want to play around with before sewing them on you can use a fabric glue stick on the back of the embroidery.

Once I had everything in place I tried using my sewing machine to sew them on but that was just a big mess. I unpicked my botched sewing job, repositioned the flowers and sat down to a good movie with a needle and thread.  A couple of hours later I had my new t-shirt ready to wear.

close up

I actually like that the background for these flowers is so drab. It makes the flowers pop. You can’t tell from this picture but there are way more flowers on one side of the bodice than the other. Symmetrical looked too cutesy. However this t-shirt isn’t done yet.

one last detail

I had this little rose-shaped button which I stitched on to cover the end of a vine that ended awkwardly. I love how fixing a problem often gives you a better result than your original plan.

After trying it on I realized I needed to do a couple more things to make it more wearable.

1) The neckline is pretty low. I’ve been wearing cami’s under it but I think it’s time this t-shirt was able to stand on it’s own. I searched through my scrap stash and found some pink fabric which I could make into a dickey. I really do not like that word. And technically it’s not a dickey that I made but an insert. So insert it is.

finished top with insert worn full length


2) This t-shirt is very long, almost a tunic and I don’t always want to wear it that long so I threaded a silk cord through the bottom hem which I can use to gather the bottom of the t-shirt to make it as short or as long as I want.


worn short

If you take anything away from this refashion I hope it’s that with the insertion of a bodice piece you can make a top more modest and by threading a ribbon through the existing hem casing you can make a top adjustable. Enjoy!

Eeyore Grows Up

I fell in love with this boxy, way too big for me v-neck t-shirt because of it’s lovely shades of lavender and Eeyore’s sad eyes staring out at the world.

Once again I forgot to take a before pic, but this one is the same shape.


This was a simple fix to take this shirt from frumpy adult who looked as if she was hanging onto her childhood way too long and make it over into a t-shirt that is both super cute and fantastically comfy. I know, I know Stacey and Clinton from TLC’s “What Not to Wear” would roll their eyes at describing any garment as comfortable but I really think this works both ends of the spectrum, fashionable AND comfortable.

First thing was to remove the collar. I cut it just below the stitching all the way around. Then I cut off the sleeve hems and bottom hem just above the stitching.

At this point I could have just tied it in a knot at my waist and called it a day, but I wanted to take this one a bit further. I found a Spandex lavender workout shirt that I will never EVER wear again (stop snickering!) and cut a horizontal tube six inches wide leaving the bottom hem intact so I could use it for the bottom hem on my new t-shirt. I slipped the tube on around my hips and since it had fit me well before I cut into it, it now fit snugly around my hips. Perfect!

I used chalk to mark both the bottom of the t-shirt and the top of the tube at the middle front, middle back and left and right sides. After pinning the bottom of the t-shirt to the top (cut side) of the lavender tube, right sides together, stretching the tube to match the marks on the t-shirt and so that the t-shirt was gathered to fit the circumference of the tube, I stitched it all together, put it on and fell in love.

t-shirt gathered to fit tube



view from the front

view from the side


I did try it on with Eeyore in front but I like the surprise of Eeyore on the back and felt that it looked a little more grown-up than entering a room with Eeyore greeting everyone.

I’m so happy with how this refashion turned out that I’ve been looking for oversize tops and coordinating Spandex shirts at garage sales ever since. I’ve made a few more and each one has turned out very different. For instance, I applied the same tactic to an over-sized see-through lace blouse which I wear over all sorts of cami’s and tank tops. I love that it pairs well with either jeans or a pencil skirt.