Upcycled Bug Skirt
Denim is one of the easiest materials to upcycle, so when I saw this skirt for only 2$, I knew I needed to buy it. This project only requires scissors, colored floss, a sewing needle, an embroidery hoop, and some clip art. I am absolutely obsessed with the results. It's whimsical and quirky while also being subtle enough to wear anywhere.
Needless to say, the skirt needed to be shortened. As is was, it looked like I could have been the Duggar Family's 20th child. All I did was try the skirt on in front of the mirror and mark with a sharpie where I wanted it shortened to. I took the skirt off and using sewing scissors cut a straight line across the skirt. Tip: Cut the skirt before washing it. I know that is making your inner germophobe cringe but that's how it will get the distressed look on the edge. After it gets out of the washer there will be some longer white threads, I trimmed them down slightly.
I used different beetles as the images I wanted to embroider, but you can use anything. I found all the images by typing "Beetle outline" into Google Image. I originally had tried using a heat transfer pencil to get the designs onto my skirt but the designs didn't transfer clearly and it was very hard to see the red against the dark denim. Then I tried freehand drawing the beetles... until I realized I can't even draw a stick figure correctly, so that was another fail. I was getting a little defeated until I read about an embroidery method using tissue paper.
I was skeptical that this method would actually work, but I didn't have any issues. I traced the beetles onto pieces of tissue paper and pinned them into place within the embroidery hoop. To prevent the tissue paper from tearing I held it against the denim as the needle was entering or exiting the fabric. The only issue I had was removing the pattern once I was finished stitching the design. I learned the best way to avoid loosening the stitches is the hold the stitches down while you tear away at the paper. Once most of the tissue paper is removed I used my needle to pick out the little shreds that remained. One other thing I would like to note is that I split the DMC floss in half. So I only used three of the six strings to create the desired thickness.
I styled my new beetle skirt with a light blue button up top that I got for 5$ at an end of season sale at TJMax. I found the fuzzy purse and chunky heal at DSW with yellow clearance tags. The belt I have had for years that I got a thrift store that sold all their belts for a quarter, and finally the dainty watch used to be my grandmas. I am particularly proud of this outfit because the whole get up, shoes and all, cost me less than 35$.