Discover how to rework, reconstruct and embellish well-worn clothes and vintage finds into sustainable, fashion-forward pieces.
Whether you trawl markets for pre-loved clothing that's in need of repair, or want to do your bit for the planet by sustainably updating your existing wardrobe, you'll find plenty of inspiration here. Take "make do and mend" one step further by not just mending but creating fashionable, unique items of clothing by repurposing your old ones. Janine Chisholm Sullivan, an experienced dressmaker, teaches you how to rework clothes into new styles—from adding embellishments and changing necklines, sleeves, and hems to total transformations, such as creating a brand new dress from two old ones. Make a pretty blouse from a floral dress, or convert a man's shirt into a stylish shirt dress. Take a woolen skirt and bring it up to date with an asymmetric hem—or add interest to a plain top by adding an embellished collar using a linen table doily. With clear, step-by-step artworks, as well as a comprehensive sewing techniques section, three full-size patterns, and advice on sourcing vintage clothes, this book will tell you everything you need to know to create a wardrobe that's all your own.
Janine Chisholm studied Theatre Design, specializing in Costume Design and Construction, and then completed a postgraduate degree in innovative Pattern Cutting at Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design. She worked in professional theatre and television for ten years with companies such as Aardman Animations for the film Chicken Run, the BBC for the period drama Lark Rise to Candleford, and the Vancouver Opera Company, before choosing to work with young people, teaching sewing and art. She then created Custard House Clothing, selling vintage clothes and providing an alterations and customization service, all with the ethos of recycling. She also works as an eco-designer and stylist, and runs regular workshops on sewing and customizing. She lives in Bristol in southwest England.