Dress Shop Sale!

My dress shop, Margaret and Alice, is having a sweet 30% off sale! It is a significant cut on the price, and we have some great pieces that will look adorable in a layered, fall outfit. I am hoping to make a post in the near future with some different outfit options from these pieces. Each of the dresses would be so cute with a cardigan and leggings, or maybe with a chambray button-up and leather boots. The lace trim top would be perfect to layer with a bow-tie blouse and skinny jeans or perhaps over a simple, dark-colored dress with a belt. In case you can’t tell, y’all need to buy this stuff soon, so I won’t decide to just keep it all for myself! Anyway, to get the 30% discount, use the coupon code: MARGARET30. Also, I’ve got another dress made that I’m going to put in the shop very soon. So keep your eyes peeled!




Refashioned: Pleated Peplum




My post have rather sparse lately, eh? Sorry, I have not been able to find much time to sew! But I do have some project ideas that will hopefully develop faster than this one has. This project has an interesting story. My grandma made it for my mom back in the late eighties or early nineties. It was stylish with its drop-waist, gold buttons, and gingham print. A few days ago, we found a bag in a refrigerator in our garage full of Mom’s old clothes. Having been saved in an airtight fridge for almost two decades, the dress was in perfect condition. The dress fit me but did not appeal to me left as it was. I made use of my seam-ripper to take the skirt and sleeves carefully off. I snipped the dress to a more peplum-friendly length and reattached the pleated ruffle. After I finished the armholes with a narrow double turn, I replaced the gold, basket weave buttons with less conspicuous white, pearly ones. I think it was the uncentered buttons that drew me in to this project. Aren’t they cute? This shirt will be a perfect top for a Fourth of July picnic (maybe because I am the picnic table cloth).

Here is the dress I began with. Don’t you just love the 90’s? But actually, I think this is rather a good specimen of that era :)

Here's what I started with.


Refashioned: Maxi-dress and Trousers… and a broken machine


I think this is the first time I’ve ever refashioned my own fashion (i.e. something I made). I made a maxi-dress last spring which was cute until I washed it…. it shrunk. Here it is before it shrunk:

Then it was far too tight for my liking. But I wore it last summer, belting it up to a shorter length. This year, I couldn’t even do that. So, I made it into a loose peplum top, which is splendid for hot summer days. It was super easy, too; that is, if you have a sewing machine that functions properly. Has anyone ever had the trouble of your thread breaking stitch after stitch? I’m legitimately asking, because I need some serious help! What’s even weirder is that my machine and my mom’s machine is doing the exact same thing. We’ve checked the tension, re- and re-threaded the bobbin, and tried different thread options. Any suggestions? Also, with my sick sewing machine, I refashioned some green trousers into shorts. This project would typically be a twenty minute project instead of one and a half hour project. But I love them! They may even have been worth the extra hour and ten minutes. Oooh, and the trousers were about 2 bucks at a garage sale and were in great condition. I am happy with my new refashioned outfit but less than happy about my machine.


Worn: Lace Trim Top

I’ve decided to start a series of blog posts titled “Worn” where I will take a piece of clothing that I’ve made in the past and show a few different ways to wear it. Hopefully, this will inspire you to wear things you make and will help me figure out things to wear it with, that I probably wouldn’t otherwise think of. Today’s piece is my lace trim top.

See the chair I’m redoing? It was $1 at garage sale! I’m gonna paint it turquoise…

This outfit, which happens to probably be my favorite outfit PERIOD, consists of the lace top over a cream tanktop with a high-waisted, breezy midi-skirt. I think most colors would be beautiful, but this particular skirt is navy blue (as you can hopefully see). Then, I’m just wearing some simple leather sandals, completing the elegantly easy-going look. I’ll wear this to places like church or a pretty nice supper somewhere.

Here’s a crazy way to wear the lace top in the winter or late fall (considering the socks and boots). I’m wearing my pleated granny top, which is essentially a blouse with a bow collar, under the lace top, with skinny jeans and boots and socks. I don’t really see myself actually wearing this, but I thought the idea was a good one. You could possibly wear it to class or just a day around town.

This outfit would work great any time of the year- in the fall and winter with a cardigan, and in the spring and summer by itself. As you can see, I’m just wearing the lace top over the cream tanktop with some coral jeans and my lace boat-shoes. In my opinion, the leather purse ties the whole thing together. This classy look would work great for most anything, because it is somewhat nice, yet pretty casual ( if that makes any sense). Let me know which is your favorite outfit!

Lace Trim Top

I’ve been hankering to do this project for some time since I saw a similar idea on this blog a while back. In some ways, it is moderately simple, but it must be done very diligently. It was super fun, though. You first have to piece together lace strips. I’ve read that some people use lace fabric cut into strips, but I just used several different lace trims. I used some neat lace that my granny passed down to us and some other lace that a sweet lady gave us recently. I spent a ton of time organizing the lace the way I wanted it. When it was finally perfect, I sewed the strips together (wide enough to fit the front and back of the shirt) with a zigzag stitch. Then, I just cut my pattern out of the fabric and sewed the side and shoulder seams. I finished all the raw edges by serging and barely turning under. I was imagining this to turn out great, but it’s far better than I imagined. I think it’ll be a perfect top to dress up or down. It’s cute with denim shorts, or, at least I think this would be darling, with a long black or coral skirt, which I need to make =D

Lace-covered Suitcase

Remember that vintage suitcase that my mom got at an estate sale for seven dollars? It got a makeover. I finally made the decision to cover it in lace (which happens to come from some thrifted, 50 cent, lace curtains). It’s a mix of the ideas from this post at A Beautiful Mess and this post I found on Pinterest. Just be sure to use the same amount of glue over the whole thing, or else you might have a slightly darker stripe, which sadly mine has. I had so much fun dressing up (I made the top!) for these pictures! I love the vintage travel theme.

Asymmetrical refashion

This refashion began with a hilarious 70’s bowling blouse, complete with poofy sleeves and a white collar.

First, I chopped off the sleeves and collar, and then I embarked on cutting my first asymmetrical hemline. I first tried tracing the curve with a plate and, finding it too small a curve, used an elongated, oval, trashcan rim. It worked perfectly! I very recently got my first serger. It is amazing what all it can do. I’ve basically only used the normal 4 thread overlock stitch until today when I tried out the rolled hem on this top. I’m telling you- there is no better way to finish curved edges. In fact, I loved it so much that I even finished the armholes and neckline with the rolled hem. I’ll admit I’m not exactly sure where and with what I’m going to wear this funny top, but it was a neat experiment anyways. Does anyone have any recommendations on how to wear it? I definitely won’t be wearing it without anything under it. I was thinking it would be darling with a high-waisted skirt, but it’s still  just a little odd.

Awkward side view

Dolman top

The easiest and fastest pattern I’ve ever made was my dolman shirt. It’s a great project to get done some weekday afternoon in an hour or two. It’s a really easy pattern to make. This is super comfy and casual in a lightweight  jersey knit. After sewing the front to the back, I added bands to the end of the sleeves and to the waist to make it fit. I like to wear it over a dress or tanktop. I seriously got it done in about 1 or 2 hours. So for all you people like me who want to get something productive done (in my book productive=sewing and sewing=productive) but can’t find a day to sit down and sew, sew, sew, here’s a great project to whip out.

Refashioned— Pleated Granny Top

I started out with this great shirt from a resale center. It was kind of a granny shirt. I have a weird thing for ancient-looking crazy shirts. It was slightly too big and had some wide pleats (which I actually left :o) and some super flowing long sleeves. I must say I love the color. Let me just say: it got a makeover. I slimmed it up some through the waist and arm holes. Then I cut the sleeves off to a shorter length and gathered them into a cuff. My biggest accomplishment on this top is the bow. It came to me with just a plain Jane collar, but I used the extra fabric from the sleeves to make the darling bow. I’ve been wanting a shirt just like this (maybe minus the pleats, but oh well!).