Thursday, 22 March 2012

Refashioned! Old Dress in funky Sorbetto... The 'GAP'

Ginger and Proud = GAP!

I bought this dress a fair few years ago and I loved the way that it highlighted my red hair, so it was and is a happy dress for me. Alas, I am a tad bored with it. 5 years of being an occasional dress that I wear with a red waist belt. I love the fabric but just didn't wear it anymore.

So I thought that I would recycle it into a Sorbetto, its a pattern that I did as my first ever complete sewing project and I think that I will always have an emotional attachment to it!

Bias tape is the biggest hurdle in the pattern and I think that I have cracked the hard-shelled bias tape egg and got it! I have had a bias-tape machine foot that I have tried to use, but to no real success... but I have worked out a way to fool-proof it (i.e. Bundana-proof it).

You still need to conventionally pin the tape onto the clothing and then sew the bias tape...

You can then fold the tape over to the right side of the fabric and then use the Bias-Tape Foot to finish. Its a nice little app* that you can measure the bias tape that you have and line it up perfectly using the adjustable guide to the desired stitch line of the tape.

*if you are a lunatic like me and 'hilariously' call any sewing gadget you have an app so you can say "Bias Tape- I've got an App for that...ahem

The Bias Tape Machine Foot can be bought from C9 Store
The dress was originally from Topshop and looking closely at the dress, wow... I scrutinise myself and my sewing to the nth degree, but someone needs to tell Topshop to give it a go now and then. It cost, to my memory, £28... To get the dress into a Sobetto I cut the pattern out on the dress using the front pattern piece on the front of the dress and the back similar. However, the back was so ill-aligned, it's laughable....

Why Topshop didn't use just one piece of fabric to create the back piece can only come down to being tight-fisted and cost-cutting. So I went with it (having already cut out the front piece) and used the back of the dress for the back of the Sorbetto.
Its as OK as what the original dress was- that being not really OK at all, but at least I will wear it again now!

Makes you think though doesn't it? I paid £28 for a dress that was fabricated with such blatant flaws 5 years ago. What was I thinking? I realise now that I have never looked closely at the fabric or finish of any of the clothing that I have spent good money on. Nice pattern? Yes. Look good on me? Yup, I guess. BUY.
Have I opened a can of worms on my clothing habits now? I went into Monsoon yesterday and was left aghast at the shoddy finish of clothing costing €100 (living in Ireland now, it's Euros all the way), there was no way I am shelling out money on clothes that I like the pattern of the fabric of but no attempt to match-up plaids, stripes or just general patterns. I make my own clothes now. I make my own clothes with passion and love- there is no turning back now. If I can breathe new life into something that I bought in my ignorance, that's fine.

Having said that, making tops from old dresses and skirts is not such a bad idea, is it? I walked out of Monsoon yesterday and into a charity shop and bought the place out of funky fabric clothing. Why not? I have missed so many opportunities in the past from refusing clothing in charity shops that were not my size, or slightly off-style. Not anymore! Creativity is like a purring cat, the more attention and stroking you give it... the louder it gets!

Time Taken: 2 hours
Cost: Only the 35c/metre bias tape, so €1.05
Make again? You knows it!

12 in 2012 goals?
Yes, Skill #3 Bias Tape

I took these pictures in my local park which is by the sea, its ace!

Here are some more pics of our favourite local walking spot...

Tangerine Tango? Nature is so fashionable!
Just, NO
Caffy, Caffy... let down your ginger hair...

I see the SEA!

Wild Garlic. ACRES of it... may I recommend Wild Garlic Pesto? You will NEVER turn back!

Mix together:
  • 100g freshly picked wild garlic leaves
  • 50g shallot, spring onions or leeks
  • 50g shelled walnuts
  • 200 ml olive oil, sunflower oil or rapeseed oil
  • 50-60g mature hard cheese (Quick’s goats cheese , Parmesan or similar hard, mature cheese), finely grated
  • ½ - 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • ½ teaspoon sugar
We use it ALL the time. Actually, I picked 300g today to make some for the next few months. Baked with fish, mixed with mayo for a yummy dip, pasta.... It's AMAZING and available now! Free!



  1. What a funky little tool! The bia binding foot! Clever!! I need one, I have had some very uneven bias binding before haha

    1. It's really handy! Once you've got your head around it's limitations, but I've pretty much got my bias tape skill sorted now... thank goodness!

  2. Very cute top. Especially with your hair. I would sometimes love to see my natural hair colour again which is similar to yours, if I remember correctly???
    I have never used a Bias tape foot but it looks like a cool app to have.

    1. I used to be REALLY dark purple, but it was costing me a fortune to keep on top of it. So I got it back to my old colour. Ginger roots with a dark hair dye = looking bald!

  3. Looks great and fantastic use of bias tape :)

  4. that is a beaut McCute! Gorgeous darling and lovely rework. Also thanks for pesto receipe. I will definitely be getting involved this week.


  5. What a great idea, and a fab way to reuse clothes you're no longer in love with. It looks gorgeous on you!

  6. Fab Funky Top. A park by the sea, fantastic.

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