An Op Shop Find Transformed by the Needle!

I’m not much of a sewer, but when it comes to op shopping for clothes, I’m discovering how important it is to be willing to alter op shop finds, even if the alteration is only minor. The top above was altered with no sewing machine stitching at all, so if you can handsew, you an alter.

This is a Katies top that cost only $4.99 from Salvos in Carnegie. I liked the texture of the top, the weave and the earthy colour. Originally it had a large band that hung down without any elasticisation, which made the top look ‘draccy’ (a word that never gets used any more and reveals my age!). The sleeves were very wide and hung down past the elbow, which also did nothing for the look of the top. If I’d been more confident, I could have simply cut the band off and quickly hemmed it using a sewing machine (I could have made the top shorter but felt okay with this length). Instead I just took the band up so that it now has a very large hem, handsewing the whole thing.

The sleeves were much easier. I just rolled them over twice and handstitched in four places on each cuff – at the top, the bottom and in the middle of the cuff on each side (ie the back and front).

I don’t have my own sewing machine and in hindsight I probably would have been better off enlisting my mum’s help. She’s always been a sewer and to this day is constantly altering things she buys to fit her better. Although she was able to teach me the rudiments of sewing as a teenager I didn’t practise threading the machine often enough and was never confident at bringing up that bobbin thread. And when the thread knotted while I stitched, which always happened sooner or later, I would throw a tanty and start abusing the Singer. Now I regret my impatience!

Anyway, my mother was wrapped with my alteration and declared that I was ‘your mother’s daughter’ (the implication being ‘after all’)!

Until next time,
If you enjoyed this post you might like Great Tips for Successful Op and Thrift Shopping.

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