Today on Meadow Rue, an awesome guest post by a blogging buddy. I will be back at blogging in a few short days. For now, enjoy Elena’s killer transformation!

Hiya guys! I’m Elena and I spend most of my days blogging over at Randomly Happy. But today there was so much sewing goodness, that I had to break it down into two parts. You’ll find half here, on the ever-lovely Allie’s blog. And the other half waits for you on Randomly Happy.

The idea was to come up with a really simple way to transform a shirt. Taking it from zero to hero. And since I’ve been a bit obsessed with statement collars and cuffs for a few months now I thought I’d give it a go. It’s nice and simple. And super quick, so do give it a go.titlebefore and afterThe How To

You will need:

  • an unloved shirt
  • fabric for collar and cuffs (20 inches x 20 inches or 50 cm by 50 cm should be enough)
  • pins
  • sewing machine

1. Put your cuff down onto your fabric, right side to right side. Draw around your cuff. FYI you should probably use tailor’s chalk for this, but I was out!

step 1

2. Add about 1/4 inch (3/4 cm) of seam allowance around the boarder of the cuff you just sketched.

step 2step 3

3. Cut the fabric and pin loosely to the cuff of your shirt. Make sure the right side is facing out. Line up the outline you traced to the edge of the cuff.

step 4

4. Going around the edge of your cuff, fold the 3/4 seam allowance in place under the fabric and pin in place.

step 5

5. Take to your nearest sewing machine, and sew a straight stitch around the edge of the cuff. Try and get as close as you can to the edge for the neatest finish.

step 6step 7  ps How great would this look with gold leather? That’s going straight to the top of my to-make list!

P4214696 P4254859


Happy March folks! It’s the month of my birth! The days are getting longer and my schedule is becoming more manageable. Sewing is happening on a weekly basis. The temps are rising above 30 degrees. And life is good. Actually, life is so good, that I have two Sew Thrifted posts lined up for you! The second one shall come soon, I promise. For now, you get a good eyeful of this red beauty. Remember this oversized red blouse when I took four before pictures so that you could hold me accountable? Umm…no one held me accountable…just saying. That oversized red blouse turned into a lovely sleeveless shirt. Can you tell how smitten I am with this top?

red thrifted button up turned sleeveless before and after

This top was not supposed to be sleeveless. A rather tragic sleeve incident prompted a complete redesigning of the final product. But I’m so glad I went the sans sleeve route, because a few days later this pin popped up in my Pinterest feed.



And since I don’t trust any sources other than my peeps on Pinterest, I was one happy camper. One very important skill that I learned with this project? How to sew bias tape on correctly! It’s sad, I know, but I always thought the raw edge of the fabric was meant to be sandwiched between the folded bias tape. It turns out that it’s not meant to be sandwiched folks, not at all. It’s meant to be delicately sewn on the front and then topstitched on the back. I would go as far as to say I consider bias tape an art…that I have not yet mastered.

red thrifted button up turned sleeveless collage

My favorite way to wear my new sleeveless blouse? Under a blazer of course. No one even knows its sleeveless until I have a hot flash and start shedding layers…in February.

red sleeveless button up with blazerDon’t forget to sign up for my shirt resizing class at Fancy Tiger next weekend.  We’ll going to be drowning in bad button ups turned fitted casual tops!

Heya friends! It’s a blizzard in these parts. A white wonderland outside, that looks beautiful from my bedroom window. Beagle thinks so too. This, my friends, is a day to get things done…inside. I’m catching up on schoolwork after an insane week of all things website related. I developed and launched a website for a music festival that’s very near and dear to my heart. It was a total labor of love. I could not be more proud.

I’ve also nixed the possibility of being web developer as a career. Not happening.

What is happening? Sewing classes of course! Back by popular demand, we’ll be resizing button up shirts to our hearts content at Fancy Tiger this month. Check out their website to see the class offerings and call 303.733.3855 to register!

fancy tiger sew thrifted class

Sometimes you get a great idea for a post, have a couple sleepless nights about it, and then decide one Saturday afternoon to just start taking pictures of yourself in the driveway.  Sometimes the sweetest mailman in the world pulls up and asks you, “Just exactly, what are you doing?” Sometimes you have to be vague and just say, “Just taking some pictures.” And then walk away.

Yep, just taking some pictures, of myself, in front of a garage door, on a Saturday afternoon. I’m not even sad about this. Actually, I’m pretty darn giddy.

Four button up shirts. All thrifted. Nine ways to wear a button-up shirt. Amen.

The starring roles:

  • A chambray from the 70’s with a great casual fit.
  • A red and black plaid that I resized here.
  • A yellow and rust plaid that was obviously western-wear from yesteryear.
  • A kelly green silk Nordstrom Blouse, mentioned here.

Now, let’s take this step by step. We’ll start in the upper left hand corner. Pay attention.

1. Tied and tucked with a high-waisted skirt. By far my favorite thing to wear this fall. Just button the shirt down to the waist of the skirt, tie the tails and tuck them under the bottom. Comfy and cute.

2. Untucked, under a sweater. Preppy and classic. But since I’m almost always hot, I can only wear this style on the coldest day of the year. Still, I love this look.

3. Tied and tucked, over a summer dress. No buttoning needed and a great way to transition a summer dress into fall.

4. Casual, as a cardigan. Super laid-back and still put together.

5. Tucked into a pencil skirt. This is likely the last time you’ll see me in heels.

6. Tied and tucked with a maxi skirt. Similar to #2, but an entirely different look.

7. The sloppy tuck. I’m still trying to perfect this. I can’t seem to get the right amount of refined slob. Such is life.

8. Unbuttoned with leggings. Because it’s still important to look cute while cleaning your toilets.

9. Tucked into shorts with a substantial belt. Because sometimes its hard to choose between pant legs and sleeves.

The reason I’m most excited about this post? I get to show the nine ways to wear a button-up to my sewing class tomorrow! Since I’m teaching the students to resize a button-up shirt, I thought a little inspiration might keep them committed to sewing at home.

T-minus 15 hours until the class starts! I am stoked.