Creative Mending and Altering

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Adding leather straps to lenthen a dress at the shoulders

Inevitably┬áthe clothes we love the most get worn out, torn, or otherwise compromised. Other times we buy things we like, but get home to find that perhaps they are not the ideal fit, and then they sit in our closets for months or even years unworn. In these instances it’s good to get creative and learn to patch, mend, or alter what we have to avoid always tossing these items away and buying new.

The clothing industry leaves a pretty hefty carbon footprint, especially the “fast fashion” that we are accustomed to today. While I certainly love to shop and to have a great selection of pieces in my closet, I try to remain conscious of my clothing and not be too wasteful. For this reason, I have taken to mending clothes that need a bit of love, or altering pieces that might not be perfect for me (yet). It usually doesn’t take a lot of skill, can be a lot of fun, (sometimes a creative change can turn a regretful purchase into a unique favorite!) and helps to ease the strain on the earth and your wallet!

Today I thought I would share a few quick fixes that I have made in my wardrobe lately:
replacing a worn and stretched pocket
A favorite basic tee of mine (rumpled from neglect) had a worn and stretched out pocket. Using a seam ripper, I removed the old pocket and replaced it using a contrasting tiny floral fabric. I think its a cute and trendy makeover, and it’s now one of my favorite basic staples again!

a cute patch for torn jeans
Worn-in jeans make the perfect weekend attire, but rips and holes are not really my thing. Instead of the usual square, I gave these a tiny mushroom patch in a printed fabric. It might end up being a great conversation starter, or maybe just a cute pair of jeans for gardening. (In the interest of full disclosure, dear readers, these jeans also had a tear in the crotch, which I patched up in a more discreet fashion!)

lengthening a dress from the shoulders
I love this polka dot dress that I picked up from TJ Maxx last year, but after wearing it once, I decided it was a liiiiiittle too short for me, and so it was repeatedly passed up for a second wear. But I love the pattern and style so I decided to try a DIY fix: I added a few inches of length to the dress from the shoulders, by cutting the seam there, then sewing in a few strips of some leather trim! It actually gives the dress a little more interest, and I think I like it even better than before. Success!

Next up I plan to learn a bit about sashiko stitching and darning – to patch holes in knits. Check out our Pinterest page to see some of my recent inspiration.

Do you have any tricks for fixing fashion? I would love to hear more ideas!


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