This WAS a 1950s ballgown
Ok, so maybe this was just an ordinary cardigan,
but who's going to wear it now???
Upcycling seems to mean one of the following:
- Chop it off so its shorter; or
- Add flowers or extra bits of fabric to it; or
- Make it into something it was never inteded to be; or
- All or some of the above.
I don't have a problem with lingerie being dyed though, because you aren't changing the nature of the item, just its colour.
Upcycling is different to the concept of 'make do and mend' that was popular in the 1940s due to rationing of fabrics and other things. Back then you would repair the clothing so it was still wearable, not utterly destroy it and make it into something unrecognisable. Unless you are talking about making curtains into a dress - thats ok.
I started thinking about this whole upcycling thing when I realised it is the root cause of my hesitation to alter vintage clothing.
Recently I purchased this gorgeous 1950s vintage dress:
Its divine! I love the bow detail on the shoulder and the full circle skirt which is lined in net to give it extra body.
Now I wasn't too fussed on the neckline. Its kind of in a nowhere area for me. Straight necklines on me either have to be high (like a boatneck), or low. This middle distance doesn't really do anything for my figure. It had a huge facing on the inside so it was able to be altered to make it look nicer - but I really wasn't sure if I should do it...
I thought about it all day as I was wearing the dress, and I realised that the adjustment I wanted to make was more in the 'make do and mend' spirit than upcycling. All I wanted to do was make a small adjustment - it was still going to be an amazing vintage dress, and if I did it properly, no-one would even know that I'd changed it.
So I went home, took a big deep breath and changed the neckline:
Please excuse the lack of make-up. The first thing I do is take off my make-up when I get home
I changed the neckline into a very shallow V, moving the centre down two inches or so. I also moved and re-attached the bow so essentially it looked the same as much as possible. I like it much better now.
So what are your opinions on upcycling? Does it give you the heebie-jeebies too?