Overall Overhaul: From Plain to Pizzazz

More often than not we have something in our closet that we just don't like. It's too boring, too fitted, too loose, too everything-but-what-it-should-be. It's easiest to just get rid of it and find something we do like, but what if we used a little creativity to fix it up? That's just what Kari did. Here's her story:

I wanted to share a Yerdle Project I did and maybe inspire others.

I like seeing beyond what might be sitting in front of me and I am a very big avid believer of re-purposing what I can.  It's a hobby of mine, makes me feel like I'm doing my part a bit, and saves me a lot of money.  I've been doing this for a few years now and I find myself looking at just about anything now before I toss it out, get rid of it or sell it, first question being, what can I make with this?!  I even have my kids now asking me "Mom, do you want this for something?" before they toss it in either the trash or recyclables.  From clothing that is old, or too big/too small, to glass and plastic bottles, to the wooden stick in my kids corn dogs.  So much potential out there!!!

A couple of weeks ago, I made a purchase of some girls shorts, jeans and a pair of long overalls.  The journey of these articles of clothing started off making me smile, a renewed sense that there is still good in people.  I received an email from the Yerdle seller saying that they had forgotten to include one of those pieces in the package, they were terribly sorry and would send the missing piece to me on their own dime.  And wouldn't you know it, both the original package and the extra package arrived on my doorstep on the same day.  I was impressed with the Yerdle community already!

My daughter is used to me having her try on clothing to see how they fit, so it was no new thing when I asked her to try on these overalls that I'd just received from Yerdle.  To my surprise, they fit her, except for the pant length.  They were to short for her.  Now my daughter is a girly girl in most ways but doesn't mind being a little funky in her own way either.  She is not one to complain about my choice of clothing for her but when I had her try these overalls on, I almost had to chuckle.  She was trying so hard not to show her disappointment with these overalls.  Now don't take me wrong, they were well made, very durable and had no imperfections, but they were plain and boring (especially for someone that is used to frills and lots of color.)

What to do. I didn't want to pass them along yet as I thought they were a neat pair of overalls and I didn't want to waste my Yerdle dollars, and I didn't want to re-Yerdle them to someone else because they mostly fit her.  So too short pants to shorts here we come.  I had my daughter stand there as I measured the length that would be needed to turn these overalls into some shorts.  Measure, mark and snip. Instant shorts, but still no instant smile.  Then that little re-purposing light bulb went on.  I was going to make these more girly for her.  But wait, shoot, I had forgotten to take my "before" picture of my project, like I tend to do way too often.  So called my daughter back into the room to put the overalls back on.  I'm pretty sure she thought I was a little on the crazy side when I made her also step back into the pant legs that I had already cut off.  I pinned them back to the overalls and took my "before" picture. Still no smile.

These overalls had such great potential.  The front breast pocket had a cute shape and I wanted to accentuate its shape.  With fabric paint, I painted the middle section of the pocket silver and let it dry.  Then I went to my pile of purse fabric.  Purses that not even anyone on Yerdle would want to try and use (but maybe now they will?).  These purses had seen their better days and when they can not take anymore wear and tear, I cut them apart to use the material, zippers and rings on other projects down the road. A little bit of time and effort and I get a lot of product out of them.  I cut myself a heart out of a piece of red purse material, then cut a heart from the left over pant leg material that I'd cut off the overalls.  Used the wrong side of the jean fabric and sewed the two pieces together.  Frayed the jean material around the red heart and presto, a hand made applique.  After the paint dried, I sewed the heart applique on top of the pocket.

Pulled out my box of scrap fabric from other projects (garments...I always save bigger pieces as you never know when they'll come in handy) and found a large enough piece to make cuffs on the bottom of the shorts.  I then added some silver studs left over from another project along the side pocket face, stepped back and was happy with what I'd created.  I handed the overall shorts to my daughter and her face just lit up with happiness.  She loved them!

I think beyond just a garment.  I see the beautiful material that I like.  Old purse that isn't worth using anymore.  I see all the hardware pieces I could use on something else and the material that would make neat accent pieces on something else.  A beautiful broken plate could be broken apart even more and made into a mosaic of sorts maybe to cover that old patio table that's been sitting out on your porch for way too long not getting the TLC it needs.  Or that broken plastic toy animal that could be spray painted a gold or silver solid color and be added to your side table as an accent piece.  So much potential out there, just have to see beyond what is in front of you.

So rather than re-Yerdle those overalls, and wanting to get good use out of my Yerdle purchase, I added some creativity to the mix and my daughter now has a pair of really cute overall shorts.  Thanks Yerdle!!!

Kari S.

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