I'm just a fat gal with a blog and an opinion. Well, lots of opinions.

“She’s Crafty!” How to Save or Transform Fatshions


Tough economic times call for creativity and using all resources possible! How does this relate to fatshion? How doesn’t it?! Ha-ha! Yesterday I decided to finally dye the vest I bought two weeks ago at Avenue to complete what I’m dubbing “The Ultimate Outfit” (though it won’t be complete without the right knee-high boots, but that search is still in progress). You see, I found the right style vest at the right price, but the color? Meh. The vest was $6.96, how could I pass it up?! So I bought a bottle of RIT black dye and gave it a go! (I have never dyed any garment before, other than tie-dying which is different all together since you’re going for more color/designs/etc.)

The vest’s original camel-khaki color:
dying and saving

As I was about to dye this vest I went to my dresser for a shirt I wouldn’t care if it got stained. I first chose this top I got at Torrid a couple of years ago and looked at it and though, “Why don’t I wear this? I love this shirt!” Then I realized that it had a stain. Boo! So I grabbed two identical shirts from the same drawer and they, too were stained. Y’all! I don’t have to tell you about staining t-shirts on the frontal-chestal area, do I? I believe it’s a fairly common thing with everyone, but especially those of us gifted with larger boobages (I am using all sorts of made-up words today). Anyhoo, I decided I needed to save these shirts from their previously considered destiny: Cut into rags for cleaning! Oh Noes!!!

I headed out to my current sewing station (I’ve been making aprons like crazy for an upcoming craft show) and laid out my supplies and planned my next course of action. Dye? Appliques? Iron-on transfers? Check, check and check! I turned on the iron and filled my bucket with hot-hot water, a cup of salt (my vest was a cotton-linen blend and the bottle said this would help) and the bottle of dye. I first soaked the vest itself in hot water and then lowered in into the bucket-o-blackness. Doing this caused a mini-splash onto my aqua t-shirt and I realized, “Hey! I should just dye this, too, probably won’t see the stain anymore!” And whipped it off my person and into the bucket it went, too!
dying and saving
So much stirring!
dying and saving dying and saving
30 minutes of stirring followed by many-several changes of water (have to keep agitating and then mild detergent and more water changes until the garments rinse clear) and finally my vest and t-shirt were ready to lay flat to dry. (I must note here that I chose not to use rubber gloves for two reasons: my husband had mysteriously thrown mine away and the dye was washing off my hands just fine at first, until? Well, see the pics!) After that I tackled the two remaining shirts. One got a neat-o iron-on transfer that covered the little stain it had perfectly, I think. And the other got some embroidered appliques ironed-onto it. Now I haven’t worn any of these yet, but I think they’ll look fairly if not entirely cute with these little upgrades. And the “Ultimate Outfit?” Well, I’ll just have to leave you in suspense for a bit, my dears. That will be for another day/week. =0)

Two tops saved (the black swirlyness at the right is what I ironed-on): dying and saving

The “Corpse Hands” as my husband has dubbed them after the dying:dying and saving

What creative or resourceful way have you saved something from the garbage or rag bin? Tell me about it! =0)

10 Comments to

““She’s Crafty!” How to Save or Transform Fatshions”

  1. On October 21st, 2010 at 10:40 am TropicalChrome Says:

    Congratulations on making your vest into the item you wanted it to be! It’s so frustrating when you can find items that are *close*, but just not quite exactly what you’re looking for!

    Being topologically gifted, I share your experience with stains. You may already know about this, but Shout Advanced Gel works wonders on them, especially those rotten grease stains on cotton. What works for me is not just to spray the stain but rub the gel in, then let it sit for 3-5 minutes before washing (but don’t let it dry completely or you have to treat it again). Some stains take 2-3 treatments/washings to get out, but this stuff has saved more clothing than I care to think about.

    But let’s face it, your iron on solution is much cuter :).

  2. On October 21st, 2010 at 10:48 am Not Blue at All Says:

    Oh, wow, I haven’t tried the shout gel. Perhaps I’ll grab a bottle. But yeah, I gotta find some more cute transfers because that was the easiest fix of all time! Thanks!

  3. On October 21st, 2010 at 11:47 am Twistie Says:

    My biggest bugaboo with clothes is the way I seem to dribble buttons everywhere. When I find some cool buttons, I buy them and keep them on hand. Then when I suddenly discover that I’m missing half the buttons on a blouse, I’ll replace them with funky, usually mismatched buttons. I love buttons.

    I’ve also been known to take a bobbin lace applique I’ve made and tack that onto an outfit to cover a stain I can’t get out. What? I’m making the lace anyway, and I can always snip a couple threads when it comes time to wash the piece and tack it back down again later. It even has long historical precedence.

  4. On October 21st, 2010 at 11:52 am Not Blue at All Says:

    Whoa! You actually make your own lace? That is amazing! I crochet, but just simple things thus far. I’m terrible with pattern (counting).
    Do tell me more about this! =0)

  5. On October 21st, 2010 at 12:15 pm Twistie Says:

    Yep. I’ve been making my own bobbin lace for some twenty years and change now. In fact, I made eleven yards of lace for my wedding gown. I’ve demonstrated the craft at Renaissance Faires and Highland games and historical houses. Why? Because it’s just fun.

    The pic at the top of this page shows you what it looks like:

    One of the great things about bobbin lace is that you don’t need to do a lot of counting. You follow the pattern and stick pins in to hold things in place before you move on.

    Now crochet, I’m not so good at. Unfortunately, I can never get the tension right. I’m always pulling way too hard.

    Then again, that’s what makes craft fairs! We all do different fun things.

  6. On October 21st, 2010 at 2:36 pm Not Blue at All Says:

    Wow!That looks super complicated, but amazing! I think crochet is the easiest of needlework, personally. I’ve done cross stitch and knitting and just can’t get the hand. True about crafters though. Huzzah!

  7. On October 21st, 2010 at 3:20 pm Bree Says:

    I used to take old jeans and turn them into capris by simply cutting, cuffing and sewing. I also took a pair of khaki pants and cropped them for work.

    Unfortunately, many cardigans have buttons too small for the holes so I tighten them up and/or replace them when they pop off. I also had to replace buttons on a pair of shorts three times! Luckily my late grandmother liked to sew and crochet and I have a supply of buttons handy.

  8. On October 22nd, 2010 at 7:41 am Not Blue at All Says:

    Nice! Yeah, I’ve always secretly envied those with grandma’s sewing/crafting stashes! =0)

  9. On October 21st, 2010 at 4:07 pm Twistie Says:

    See that’s the thing, it looks super complicated, but it gets a whole lot easier when you realize that out of all the threads, all the bobbins, all the pins, and all the various stuff going on, all you’re paying attention to at any given moment is four threads which are moved in one of two ways… and then you stick a pin in a hole that’s already there for you in precisely the place it needs to go.

    There are plenty of challenges, but I taught myself the basic concepts out of a book in about two or three hours. From there it’s all variations on a very easy to comprehend theme.

    I had the same problem with knitting that I had with crochet. I just kept getting the tension way too tight. And cross stitch, well, it just didn’t speak to me. Love the look, have no patience for the process.

    Someday I may ask my sister in law to teach me a bit more about weaving, though. I always think that looks like something I might enjoy doing.

  10. On October 22nd, 2010 at 7:43 am Not Blue at All Says:

    Yes, I struggle with crochet tension, too, but I have found ways to get around that. I’m all about shortcuts! Ha! Thanks.

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