3rd March 2014
I recently picked up a leather skirt in my local (and most favourite) thrift store for a just couple of dollars. However, it was an incredibly awkward just below the knee length and I knew straight away I wanted to cut it into a mini – I mean, who doesn’t love a staple leather mini? Rather than just doing the old chop straight away, I decided to experiment with one of my favourite trends of the season – leather fringing. Seen all over the runways from Celine, to Valentino, to Altuzarra, to Gucci - fringing is clearly the jam this season. In an ode to what is soon to come (or has done so already – seemingly prematurely – according to net-a-porter), I decided to do a little in-between Before & After project by trimming this skirt into a little fringed number, as a super fun stepping stone between midi and mini. What I love about this fringed project is that it’s so, so (soooo) easy. As long as you can work a ruler and cut straight (sometimes not as easy as it sounds!) you’re good to go. Get ye to your local thifty!
This was the inspiration, a little bit of Vally and and little bit of Gucci.
- A thrifted leather skirt
1. First I trimmed the skirt skirt to knee length. If yours has lining (mine didn’t), make sure you trim and sew the lining up higher than where you propose the fringe to end.
2. Use a skirt you already have to gauge the length you want. I was planning on doing a raw hem once I had tired of the fringe so I marked that edge with chalk.
3. Cut up along the line of the side seam to the top of where you want to cut. Then use your chalk to mark lines at regular intervals so you know where to cut your trip.
4. Cut the fringe all the way around.
Voila! The perfect go between. Looking forward to showing you what I plan to do to this skirt once it goes mini. Talk about the skirt that just keeps on giving!
14th January 2014
Carrying on from my mention of chained boots yesterday, there’s nothing better than a quick and simple update to your favourite wardrobe staple to change its look entirely and double the wearability. These removable boot straps were so simple to make and looked perfect worn with a pair of black ankle boots. You can read the full tutorial on the Witchery website here.
Tutorial and full outfit details here.
1st November 2013
As some of you will have noticed I’m going through a bit of a bralette / crop top phase (DIY ones here and here), worn under blazers with high waisted skirts or palazzo trousers. As soon as I saw this amazing Alexander Wang style on Nicole Richie I knew it was something I would have to try to make myself. Trouble was, I had no idea where to start. I ended up taking an afternoon out and playing around until I got it (kinda) right. There was a lot of trial and error, particularly getting the cup shape jussssst so, but I think it worked out ok! Although, before you ask, clearly not the sort of thing you would wear to a job interview…
- Some black fabric, I used fabric that was like thin neoprene, good for giving you support and also great because you don’t have to hem the edges if you don’t want to (yay!).
- Sewing Machine
1. Start by making the cups of your top. Below you can see a very simple template of the left cup (print to scale on A4 paper). For each cup you will make a two triangles with curved sides. Once you sew the curved edges together you will get the rounded cup shape. The template has been made to fit my size which is why I would suggest you print it out and play around with some scraps of fabric before committing to a shape. Everyone is different so once you’ve made it using scraps trim the cups or make then bigger depending on your requirements. The dotted lines show where you will pin them together.
2. Create two sets of these. Note that the template above is for the left cup, so for the right cup you should turn the template onto the wrong side and trace that onto your fabric so your cups end up being mirror images of each other. Then cut the base fabric to suit, matching to the width of your back.
3. Pin the curved edges together.
4. Sew together.
5. Pin and then sew the cups to the top edges of the base fabric.
6. It should (hopefully) look like this.
7. Then sew the elastic on as the straps, matching to the right size of my shoulders. I sewed the elastic all the way down the sides of the triangles onto the base fabric so it gave extra lift.
8. The final step is to secure the back. I used an exposed zip to do this, pinning to the outside of the fabric and sewing down.
Voila! You may have noticed I didn’t sew the edges of the triangles, I didn’t have to because of the fabric I used (great for lazy people like me!), but if you use fabric that frays more I would definitely hem the edges. Just remember to add a little more around the edges of your triangles when you are cutting them to allow for this.
As with any cropped piece like this that shows a lot of skin, I like to pair it with a longer skirt or a slouchy blazer to play down the look so it’s not so in your face. Happy DIYing!
First and last images by Sabrina Sikora.