The re:fashion wardrobe Sew your own stylish, sustainable clothes

Portia Lawrie

Book - 2023

"Transform pre-loved clothes and forgotten fabrics into stylish new garments. Let the founder of The Refashioners movement and sewing designer Portia Lawrie show you how to created sustainable fashion that doesn't cost the planet. Beginning with advice on how to source and 'harvest' existing clothes, Portia then makes 11 inspirational garments - from tees and shirts to shorts and a coat - all clearly shown step by step. With her friendly style and tricks of the trade, discover just how easy it is to build a modern, versatile capsule wardrobe that you can wear throughout the seasons, and for years to come."--Back cover

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Location Call Number   Status
2nd Floor 646.404/Lawrie Checked In
Patterns (Instructional works)
Tunbridge Wells, Kent : Search Press Limited 2023.
Main Author
Portia Lawrie (author)
Item Description
Includes index.
Physical Description
176 pages : illustrations (chiefly color) ; 28 cm
  • About me
  • Why re:fashion?
  • Why a capsule wardrobe?
  • Building a capsule wardrobe
  • Sourcing: the secrets of secondhand shopping
  • Haberdasherv & hardware
  • Equipment & notions
  • The projects
  • T-shirt Dress
  • Sweatshirt Tee
  • Boxy Tunic Shirt
  • Cropped Shirt
  • Robe Jacket
  • Pieced Linen Tee
  • Button-front Skirt
  • Side-stripe Trousers
  • Paperbag Shorts
  • Refitted Jeans
  • Duvet Duster Coat
  • Capsule combinations
  • Capsule combinations
  • Re:fashion techniques
  • Making pattern templates
  • Fitting
  • Size doesn't matter: sizing up or down
  • Deconstruction
  • Essential machine stitches
  • Essential hand stitches
  • Machine darning
  • Seams
  • Hemming
  • Darts
  • Bias tape
  • Pockets
  • Fly zips
  • Buttonholes & buttons
  • Neckline finishes
  • Band finishes
  • Fabric ties & belts
  • Glossary
  • Acknowledgements
  • Index
Review by Booklist Review

Lawrie's breezy, can-do attitude is infectious. After all, how hard can it be to repurpose garments (owned or thrifted) to save the planet and pockets? For readers without sewing expertise, Lawrie advises at least getting familiar with the workings of a machine and its terminology. Her idea works: create 11 items of clothing--from boxy tunic shirt to duvet duster coat--that adhere to a color palette for mix-and-matchable potential. Upfront instructions couldn't be more thorough and are well illustrated too: building the wardrobe, sourcing garments, and working with fabrics, haberdashery, and hardware. Directions for constructing each piece are thorough, filled with step-by-step photographs, tips and tricks (e.g., how to remove jean rivets), opportunities for creativity (like reverse the skirt design and put buttons on the back), and more. There's even a bit of a photo runway, showing different combinations of garments. Best yet is Lawrie's information on techniques that go beyond pattern templates and her reminders that fitting (yes, self-measuring) is critical to buttons and holes, necklines and belts. No excuses!

From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Review by Library Journal Review

Refashioning--the act of taking discarded clothing or textiles and restyling them into a new piece--is an eco-conscious way to reuse items that may be out of style, slightly worn, or simply unwanted. Lawrie, who created the Refashioners challenge to encourage sewists to use reclaimed textiles for garment sewing, shares her extensive knowledge of sustainable sewing in this thoughtful guide. She encourages sewists to create a "capsule wardrobe," a curated, practical collection of garments that are timeless and of good quality. There are several projects, from a simple sleeveless shift dress created from three T-shirts to a full-scale refitting of a pair of oversized blue jeans. Each activity includes step-by-step instructions with ample photographs, along with tips and tricks for sewing success. The aesthetic is generally minimalist, featuring loose-fitting, boxy garments in neutral colors, but sewists interested in experimenting with more fitted or embellished clothing can consult the techniques chapter for ideas on creating refashioned items that suit their personal style. VERDICT Many sewists have an interest in sustainability and the environmental impact of fashion. This book provides thoughtful guidance for repurposing a variety of garments and textiles. Recommended for all sewing collections.--Nanette Donohue

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