confessions of a refashionista + t(ie)-shirt cardigan


Leggi questo post in: Italiano


alternate title: “good things come to those who wait.” that’s how it went with the book “confessions of a refashionista: life on the zig zag.” i’d wanted to read it since discovering sheri from awesomesauce & asshattery, but she was getting the new edition ready, so i patiently waited. and i’m quite glad i did! this book is chock-full of super fantastic ideas to reinvent your wardrobe, either by bestowing new life on those clothes forgotten at the back of your closet or by using thrifted textiles. the best part about it is that the projects are actually very simple (i wondered more than once “now, why didn’t i think of that before?!”) so anyone with access to a sewing machine can do them, but the end results are extemely creative and impressive-looking.

besides the many projects to dress you from head to foot (the only thing missing is a project to make underwear, even though there are two transforming long underwear!), there is also very useful info on how to successfully dye or bleach garments and a tutorial on how to make a dress form with your exact size, a must for anyone who sews clothes but doesn’t want to spend bunches of money on an anonymous dress form.

sheri, as you can already read in her blog, has a very unique and hilarious way of writing, so laughter often accompanied my reading of her book. but, all fun aside, her writing style is very personal and clear and reflects her communicative character. her explanations are down-to-earth and detailed, making it very simple to follow them. she also included a page with simple sewing terminology explained and the spiral binding (not to be confused with those crummy copy shop bindings) is super convenient when you need to consult the book during a refashion.

the book is already super fantabulous, but there’s even more for those who order it:

  • sheri will sign every copy with a personalized message
  • the book will be wrapped up and sent worldwide with insured mail for FREE
  • you will also receive a goodie that can be used for at least one of the projects in the book (in my case, a fantastic vintage tie and matching button)
  • €1 will be donated for each book sale to designers against aids

criminy, what else could you ask for?!

one of the reasons i love refashioning so much is that a project can never be recreated exactly the same way because the materials are always different. therefore you need lots of creativity, even when you use someone else’s tutorial. sheri takes this into consideration and often gives ideas for potential variations or changes. i love how the readers will think of a gazillion other variations, because it sparks your creativity. after reading it, i took the tie and button that sheri sent me with the book and a long-sleeved t-shirt that was too small for me and, jumping off from page 46 (neckties for all), i created a t(ie)-shirt cardigan:

i made it more or less as per the instructions, but first i made an off-center cut down the front.

i sewed the tie on from the hem upwards…

…around the back of the neck…

…to the other side of the shirt. i turned up the tip of the tie and sewed it in place on the inside…

…i hemmed the other side of the shirt. i added a bit of embroidery to cover up the tiny holes left from the stitching i didn’t do properly the first time and i added on the button and buttonhole.

unfortunately the sleeves were too short for me (horror!!!) and one was also stained.

so it became a short-sleeved cardigan. i made a cuff on the sleeves, which i sewed down with a double needle (to maintain stretchiness). then i cut the left-over tie in half and i made them into a couple of epaulets on the sleeves.

now you can only see the stain if you push aside the epaulet.

the only problem? i want to wear it NOW, but it’s a summer cardigan and we’re now getting closer and closer to winter! which means, of course, that i’ll have to make another with a sweater! but there are also still the the leftover sleeves i cut off… and that cute tutorial for funky leg-warmers on page 61… i can wear *those* now!


so, have i convinced you yet? go RIGHT NOW to order this inspiring book! give one of your creative loved ones a wonderful gift or — even better — give it to yourself! 🙂



  1. not sure, but i don't think so. (it didn't say on the label, oddly enough.) if you're asking because of its washability, there's no problem. the reason it's a bit wrinkled in the before picture is because i'd already washed it on a regular cycle to clean it and test it out in the wash.

  2. Siete veramente un mito entrambe! Il libro è magnifico, hai ragione, anche per una un pò impedita con il cucito come me: spiegazioni chiarissime, fototutorial dettagliatissimi e uno stile simpatico e accattivante proprio come Sheri! E ti ringrazio perchè mi hai dato un'idea fantastica per riutilizzare finalmente il centinaio di ovetti gialli che mi sono ostinata a conservare perchè "possono servire un giorno, non si sa mai…"! Grazie mille davvero!


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here