Fashion DIY: Old is New, Frou-Frou

There’s no denying it, we’re a throw away society. Last season? Bin it.

Thanks to our attention span now averaging an entire eight seconds, we’re onto the next ‘thing’ quicker than ever, leaving a trail of disposable destruction in our wake.

Now don’t get us wrong, we’re chronic throwerouter-ers, however, we were really taken back by learning that 85% of textiles end up in landfill, making clothes (closely behind oil) the second largest source of pollution. Working in the fashion industry, we find this pretty darn concerning… So what better reason to rework something you already have, for a DIY that doesn’t break the bank or the environment!?

The runways have spoken – what’s old is again new, especially when it comes to frou-frou! Some styles admittedly reminiscent of Jerry Seinfields’ infamous ‘Puffy Shirt’ and kindergarten photo day get-ups circa the early ’90s, it’s officially all about ruffles.

Miu Miu, Chloe, Johanna Ortiz, Vetements, Gucci and Ellery – just to name a few, are all on the revered ruffle bandwagon. With an old shirt, some fabric scraps, scissors, a needle and thread, you can be too!

Miu Miu Ruffled Cotton-Poplin Blouse

1. Lay your shirt flat and buttoned up to measure along a curve from the front button stand to the RHS shoulder. Then cut a 15cm wide rectangular panel in your chosen fabric double this length. Repeat for the LHS, mirroring this curve from button stand edge to shoulder.

2. Next, measure across the back of shirt in desired curve from shoulder to shoulder. Again, cut a 15cm wide rectangular panel double this length.

3. Now we want to secure the gather on each ruffle panel. Grab your needle and thread and wide stitch evenly across the length of fabric, 1cm down from the top edge.

Ensure to leave long threads on either end to pull and create the gather. Manipulate the gathers to reduce the fabric strip to half its total length and gently iron to secure.

4. Position and pin the ruffles in place, leaving a 1cm seam allowance to stitch along. Then, at each shoulder, lift up front and back panels so the right sides of the fabric face one another.

5. Lastly, stitch your ruffles to your shirt leaving a 1cm seam allowance.

6. Fold ruffles down right side up, gently press and voila! Your old shirt has a second innings!

Ports 1961 Cotton Shirt

1. Grab a piece of fabric that’s 30cm wide and easily wraps around your waist. In this case we chose to keep raw selvedge edges for a shaggy, raw finish.

2. Cut two strips the length of your fabric approx 5cm wide. Strip 1 Press back both edges 1cm so you end up with a 3cm wide strip. Strip 2 Repeat, and then press in half so you have a 1.5cm wide strip. Knot edges.

3. Position Strip 1 on your wide fabric panel, 10cm down from top edge. Sew through all layers along top edge. Position Strip 2 under Strip 1 and then sew down the bottom edge.

4. Now you have a wide belt loop and tie to gather your fabric belt and cinch over your fave shirt!

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