Today’s guest is an upcycling extraordinaire! I’m pleased to welcome Vicky from Vicky Myers Creations. Really, take a look at her Etsy shop; and she does commissions – taking your clothes and turning them into something amazing. She’s not just upcycling fabric either, check out her projects for reusing chip bags! And read on to see what she’s got for us today.
Hi, My name is Vicky – I am so excited to be taking part in Savings Made by Sewing. I LOVE sewing, finding the process relaxing, challenging, absorbing, plus it nurtures my creativity. But, it is not always that cheap. In the UK fabric is often £14 a meter which equates to $20 a yard in the US. This can be prohibitive, and it is cheaper to buy new ready-made clothes (dependent upon the brands you buy!!)
Another passion of mine is upcycling and reusing so it comes naturally to me to reuse fabric whenever possible.
I live in the UK and regularly use charity shops, car boot sales and jumble sales. In the UK charity shops are relatively small shops with a few racks of second-hand clothes per size and gender. I suspect they are similar to thrift shops.
Car boot sales are held weekly; anyone can bring their car and set up a table to sell what they like. Jumble sales are the cheapest but are not as popular as they used to be. They are an event with tables piled high with clothing that you have to rummage through with many others doing the same, elbows at the ready!! Often at a mere 20p an item this is as cheap as it gets.
Other options include signing up to community reuse groups such as freecycle. Freecycle is community-led groups where people give away items they no longer need and search for items they do need. In the UK there is a similiar organisation called freegle.
What do I look for??
Check out skirts and dresses for fabric to reuse. Full skirts once washed and unpicked can surprise you with the amount of fabric. Jersey dresses are perfect to transform into children’s clothes.
This size 14 skirt gave me 74″ by 23″ of fabric for £3 ($5)
But you don’t need to stop there; it doesn’t have to be all about making adult clothes into children’s clothes. I love making bags. So I always check out the bedding – sheets and duvets are brilliant as lining fabric for bags, or to make pillowcase dresses for young girls. Plus curtains are a fabulous source of fabric.
Trousers can be transformed into man bags. These make unique fabulous gifts.
Consider the jumper section. A 100% wool jumper with handwash only label can be placed in the washing machine at the hottest setting and felted.
Always consider the quality of the fabric before purchasing the item. Is it worn in an area? Check the whole garment. Is it machine washable? It is no longer a bargain if you have to pay for dry cleaning before you can upcycle your garment!
What are your top tips for second-hand fabric shopping? If you also loving making items out of old, check out the free tutorials on my blog for inspiration.
These upcycling tips are wonderful! That finishes us out for the week on fabric, but next week we’ll be ready to save money in another area of sewing – patterns. Have a great weekend!