DIY Ideas from Fall 2015 Fashion Weeks Street Style

milanstreetstyle_2Fashion weeks around the world have drawn to a close, and we’ve seen a ton of DIY-able ideas for this coming Fall. How about that ubiquitous street style for February 2015 – what are all the fashionistas in the know wearing? The answer is fabulous coats and warm weather gear…and there are more than a few great ideas out there that are still totally do-able and make-able before Spring is fully here. See below to get those creative juices flowing…

londonstreetstyle_1 In London, Tati Cotliar sported a cut pink hooded overcoat – and you can add a similar studded detail to the hood with some flat round brass studs.

This verbose topper spotted on the streets could be easily remade with a thrifted man’s wool overcoat and adding some wordy iron-on appliqués in punky neon colors. (This Etsy shop makes some neat ones!)

londonstreetstyle_2Caroline Sieber attended the shows in this pretty blue suit jacket – made beautifully unique with a large-sized iron-on embroidered floral motif appliqué.

Sarah Rutson‘s No 21 top could easily be mimicked by hand-sewing some black ostrich feathers (humanely harvested, ideally) onto the front of a boring black sweater to make it chic.

milanstreetstyle_1In Milan, Elisa Nalin‘s punchy ensemble is offset by a bright beaded clutch – which could be made by gluing plastic beaded necklaces from the dollar store or a toy store in a V-pattern onto an existing clutch.

This neat hybrid denim jacket spotted on the streets could be re-created by someone enterprising – just by re-purposing a knitted blanket sewn to the hem of a jacket, cut apart and used as collar-covering, and some of the yarn pulled out and woven into the jacket as detailing. (Look for a really thick, luxurious yarn to make this work!)milanstreetstyle_2Appliques again! (Seeing a trend??!) Adding them to a plain sweatshirt-fabric skirt can make gray look fabulous.

And that coat would be a doable Franken-DIY: bleach an indigo denim jacket, remove the arms and replace with arms salvaged from a thrifted black leather jacket. Instant Milan street cred.

nyfwstreetstyle_1From New York, something similar to Anya Ziourova‘s Fendi sweater could be made with hand-sewing some exposed zippers to the front with colored faux fur, rhinestone trim, and colored fleece in patches and shapes to make that fun monster face.

Gigi Hadid‘s Diesel Black Gold jacket take some serious studding skills…but would be an amazing upgrade to a very simple black leather moto jacket.

nyfwstreetstyle_2Any top could be given a glam makeover by hand-sewing beads and rhinestones onto the front in a starburst pattern.

That Thom Browne coat could be easily re-interpreted with just a line of cone spikes ringing the armscye of a nipped-in gray Victorian-style overcoat.

Hope that gives you some ideas for projects to start right now!

Photos: Phil Oh from, Craig Arend from The New York Times, , Mark Iantosca, POPSUGAR. Composites by me.

DIY Ideas from Fall 2015 Fashion Weeks

0.diyideas_fall2015runwaysintrophotoMercedes-Benz New York Fashion Week has wrapped up, folks…London Fashion Week is drawing to a close…next up, Paris and Milan. Already some great DIY ideas are surfacing for Fall 2015 and I’ll bet you want to get right on top of those and start thinking about how to incorporate these trends into your wardrobe for the upcoming season. Here are some emerging looks from the runways:


Though it’s hard to tell from the photo, hand-stitching some delicate silver ball-chain to the edges of your clothing a la Alexander Wang can look edgy and cool. Create a faux quilting effect on a dark pair of shorts using iron-on pearl nailheads and trim like at Alice + Olivia. Hand-sew a swatch of shearling to a jacket collar to make it ultra cozy.diyfall2015_2

Add white brushstrokes of fabric paint on the hem of a trench to make a bold statement like Band of Outsiders. You can mimic the Kaelen look by chopping off a shoulder from a long shirtdress (and finishing the hem by tucking under and securing with fabric glue or a line of stitching)…and add some ribbons looped into bows at either side of the skirt.diyfall2015_3

Go leatherette like L.A.M.B. by sewing some leather patches onto a sweater at the front and elbows, creating a patched leather skirt to match. Go full on cray-cray like Libertine and add a variety of appliques to a standard wool coat to make it vibrant and colorful.diyfall2015_4

Tartan and lace go together like peas and carrots. Do like Marc Jacobs and slit a pleated plaid skirt at the folds, adding lace strips in-between with some hand-sewing or hem tape. Create an embellished sweater like at Markus Lupfer and hand-stitch clusters of beads onto a thrifted turtleneck to downplay all the brown tragedy.


Get out the white fabric paint and go all Jackson Pollack on a black suit like at Norma Kamali. Upgrade a well-fitting vibrant coat with a line of contrasting piping, sewn on higgledy-piggledy with a pipin foot like Peter Pilotto did.diyfall2015_6

Do double-duty DIY inspired by Preen by Thornton Bregazzi by adding tiny hand-stitched clusters of dark beads to a cropped cream sweater, and bright lacing and iron-on appliques to a standard plaid skirt. Get sexy like Proenza Schouler by cutting slits in a slinky knit dress (just overlock the edges after cutting so they don’t unravel!) and wear a pair of fishnet tights underneath to add the appeal.diyfall2015_7

Get into dip-dying by dipping a cream turtleneck fisherman’s sweater into indigo dye like at Sea. Add a bit of sweetness to a mini LBD like at Vera Wang by stitching on white flowers (pulled off a silk flower!) and securing with a white pearl in each center.diyfall2015_8

Make a standard gray turtleneck more fun like at Vivienne Tam by taking an open flame to a piece of polyester or rayon to burn it into a fun and raggedy pattern (which may take a few tries!) Hand-sew your hand-made lacey fabric onto the chest and shoulders of a sweater. Add texture like at Zero + Maria Cornejo by sewing lines of black fringe up and down a charcoal wrap coat.

Any brands or collections that seem to lend themselves to DIY in your opinion? Let me know in the comments: I’m always on the lookout for any new lines of interest!



All photos from; photo collages by me.

Inspiration: Fashion with Sleeves Tied at the Waist

celineCeline A/W 2013 RTW

Around the end of Summer and for A/W 2013, the mini-trend of a shirt knotted at the waist was spotted again and again on the runways, celebs, and street-style. Harking back to the 90’s days of grungy plaid sweatshirts tied around the waist (and that iconic Marc Jacobs grunge collection for Louis Vuitton), the shirt-sleeves-tied-around-the-waist-style keeps cropping up in a more sophisticated palette and incarnation. alexanderwang

Alexander Wang A/W 2013 RTW


And incidentally, this is also my next DIY in the New Year. Stay tuned!


Photos from:, Tommy Ton for here, here, here, The Cut

DIY Ideas for Spring 2014 Straight from the Runways (N – Z)

0.diyideas_nzspring2014runwaysintrophoto So I’ve presented a bunch of DIY ideas gleaned from the latest Fashion Weeks (for brands starting with A-M); now it’s time for the latter half. Check out some high-end fashions below…and ideas to do-it-yourself for a fraction of the cost.diyideas_spring2014_09Left: Turn an oversized men’s shirt into a dress like at No.21, and add some jet beads stitched onto the hem in flower shapes.
Right: Norma Kamali‘s jersey maxi-dress can be made a little less sporty and more glam with some iron-on round nailhead trim.

diyideas_spring2014_10Left: Opening Ceremony‘s embellished sweatshirt can be made with some yellow fabric paint and some sew-on black rhinestones.
Right: The wild patterns at Peter Pilotto can be mimicked by tie-dyeing some fabric in candy splotches, and then hand-drawing floral designs with some black fabric pens. Cut out and sew onto the front of a button-down shirt for extra points!

diyideas_spring2014_11Left: For the bold, a sweatshirt with a photographic print like at Ports 1961 can be duped by playing with soft fabric paints on a wet white sweatshirt. (Just dye a base yellow color first and mask off where you want the sun before you add orange and brown.)
Right: A Preen by Thornton Bregazzi wrap skirt can easily be made from a flat piece of stiff sky blue fabric (and I even made a tutorial how-to here!)

diyideas_spring2014_12Left: Proenza Schouler’s chic trenchcoat can be made by slitting a heavy white (slightly large) maxidress down the front and folding the cut edges to the inside, finishing with hem tape. Add 6 lock closures spaced evenly down the front, and a black belt made of stretchy elastic around your waist.
Right: A simple satin sheath dress can be made so much more youthful with double-layered heart-shaped chiffon pieces stitched randomly on the front. Rachel Antonoff.

diyideas_spring2014_13Left: Jazz up a plain white skirt with freehanded tattoo-inspired details with black fabric pens like at Rachel Roy.
Right: Take a cue from Rebecca Minkoff and add embroidered iron-on patches around the neckline of a white top and a chain-and-thread braided belt with colorful tassels.

diyideas_spring2014_14Left: Sachin + Babi’s graphic peplum top can be made by sewing a semi-circle of black fabric to the bottom of a plain black top, and then gluing on tiny flowers cut from white leather.
Right: A plain white suit jacket can be made more Springlike with some embroidered iron-on floral patches like at Sass + Bide.diyideas_spring2014_15Left: Though famous for their prints, a Suno-inspired outfit can be made by pairing a floral jacket with a necklace made of white fabric flowers.
Right: Tory Burch made use of some iron-on embroidered appliques on her plain sheath dresses, and so can you! (Add some rhinestones too for an extra statement.)

diyideas_spring2014_16Left: Chop up a men’s shirt into a short-sleeved top, and use the sleeves to create an obi-like belt like at Vionnet.
Right: Fashion Wren‘s version of the ubiquitous shirt-dress by sewing together the top from a chambray shirt to the bottom of a white button-down.

And if you missed part 1 of this (inspiration from brands A-M), check it out here!



DIY Ideas for Spring 2014 Straight from the Runways (A – M)

0.diyideas_spring2014runwaysintrophotoSo all the Fashion Weeks around the world – New York, Paris, London, Milan (and Portland, LOL!) – have now concluded and it’s time to do a final wrap-up of all those great ideas and put some inspiration on file to add to the DIY queue. So what’s in store for this coming Spring? And what are you DYING to DIY? Let’s take a look at some amazing runway pieces and see how we can interpret them for creative fashion-lovers on a budget (AKA the Rest of the World):


Left: Take a cue from 3.1 Phillip Lim and add agate-inspired layers of fabric paint to an artfully-cut hem of a white top. Stitch in a layer of sheer fabric underneath for length, and some glued-on rhinestone jewels for your sandals.
Right: Alexander Wang‘s oversized trousers are potentially an easy DIY by thrifting a pair of too-large gray dungarees and folding the excess fabric towards the front, securing with hand-stitching in the shape of an X at the waistband.


Left: Burberry Prorsum’s chic update on the granny-lace skirt can be made by adding some sew-on rhinestones over the flower motif in a lace pencil skirt (and you could easily make one from a thrifted tablecloth or lace curtain!) Update a pair of sandals too by adding a same-colored rectangle of fabric between the toe-strap and ankle-strap (and just gluing the fabric over the straps on the underside).
Right: Simulate the pretty elegance of Carven‘s cutout dress with some DIY floral applique at the sides, and a strategically-placed cut-out in the center of a simple LBD.


Left: A steady hand can mimic the swooping brushtroke motifs at Céline with just some red fabric paint on top of a royal blue T-shirt. Also stitch in a sheer black chiffon underlay to a plain white pleated skirt.
Right: Christian Dior‘s breezy shirtdress is a re-tread of 2011’s cutout shoulder trend (but just tuck one side of the front into the button placket and pin in order to steal the look).


Left: Create a suitlike ensemble with mismatched separates with some strategically-placed floral applique (see Carven, above) just like at Creatures of the Wind.
Right: Warrior chic is totally attainable by stitching in some neutral fringe trim at the waist of an ivory dress, and adding some tan leather extensions to your flat sandals, inspired by Derek Lam.


Left: Edun‘s pattern play can be re-created by stamping a black X pattern with fabric paint over the bottom half of a white coat, and stamping a larger pattern onto plain white sandal slides.
Right: That funny folded skirt outfit at Giambattista Valli could be made by cutting the skirt part off of a wide A-line dress, then slitting the skirt up the center. Flip each side outwards and secure with invisible stitches underneath each roll for the skirt-part, and crop the top part of the dress to create a crop top.


Left: Honor‘s understated dress can be made from a simple black LBD with the addition of sew-on silver star sequins scattered on the collar and pocket. Also: glam up a pair of black flats with some multi-colored pink glitter on the toeboxes by using Mod Podge. (Plus: glittery sunglasses too!)
Right: Hand-stitch a couple pieces of black strapping to the bottom of a bikini top to mimic the Jason Wu Spring 2014 strappy bikini.diyideas_spring2014runways7

Left: Create a boldly-striped skirt like at Jil Sander Navy just by streaking a pleated white skirt with some vertical stripes of diluted fabric paint.
Right: L.A.M.B.‘s fashion-forward dress can be re-created by sewing a long rectangle of fabric to the bottom of a straight black tanktop, and allowing to gape open for a fun nonchalance. Also: Re-color the tops of white sandals with some Angelus leather paint for that contrasting cobalt hue!)


Left: Taking a page from Markus Lupfer‘s playbook, small cut-out hearts can be made in a sweatshirt by hand-stitching some lace fabric behind each cutout, with the edges hidden by sewn-on ruffled trim. Glue some chunky rhinestones onto the toe-straps of some plain black sandals. (Adorabe Persian kitty sadly not DIY’able!)
Right: Go wild with Moschino Cheap & Chic‘s take on Spring: Add some flamingo-shaped iron-on appliques to a plain white purse, create some pink marabou puffball shoeclips, and stamp a white cami and pant-set with flamingos rendered in pink and black fabric paint. Now all you need is a Cosmo!

Ideas from brands beginning with N-Z soon to come!


All runway photos from

DIY 7 Major Spring Trends for 2013

Spring is just around the corner – and I can’t wait to update my wardrobe with all the fun trends on they way.  Get a head start with some DIY ideas for these major Spring 2013 trends:

#7: Delicate White Lace

VAL_0621.450x675Pristine, white, and sweet: cutwork and lace evoked innocence at Emilio Pucci and Giambattista Valli (above).  Try lacy lingerie peeking out of a boxy top, or fully embrace the trend with a pretty lace dress.


…or, DIY this trend with my Lace Maxi-Skirt made from a Curtain

#6: Peekaboo Pieces


Spring is one of the best times to show a little skin, and BCBG Max Azria (above) and Cushnie et Ochs thought the same.  Update your wardrobe with some strategically-placed cutouts to let the sun in.

pink+dress3…or, DIY this trend with A Pair and a Spare’s Carven Inspired Cut Out Mini Dress

#5: Black Mesh

celineMesh was super-sexy at Celine (above) and Calvin Klein, and just a little of it goes a long way.  Try adding a small insert into a key piece in your wardrobe, or wear a mesh top over a tank for a sporty feel.

done2…or, DIY this trend with my Alexander Wang Mesh Insert Sweater

#4: Leather

dereklamSeen on the runways at Derek Lam (above) and Jason Wu, leather is still going strong through Spring.  For a lighter feel, try a leather piece in a color besides black, or just add leather (or pleather) accents to your clothes.

diyleathertopLOVEAESTHETICS…or, DIY this trend with Love Aesthetics’ Minimal White Leather Top

#3: Black and White Contrast

chanelWith the 60’s-influence seen in Collection after Collection, big blocks of black and white dominated.  Go totally mod with these neutrals like at Chanel and Proenza Schouler.

cape1…or, DIY this trend with my Chanel-Style Black-and-White Cape

#2: Flower Prints


Every Spring, flowers pop up on clothing all over the runways, celebrating the season of renewal and rebirth as we emerge from frozen throes.  See: Mary Katrantzou and Thakoon, for starters.

7113838123_0ba81307cd_o…or, DIY this trend with …love, Maegan’s Floral Print Jeans

#1: Thick Stripes

marcjacobsIt was like a day at the circus (or, revisiting Twiggy and Edie Sedgwick) at Marc Jacobs (above) and Michael Kors.  Fully embrace the trend with a pair of vertically-striped pants…or just keep it understated with a simple top.

refinery29bretonstripetop…or, DIY this trend with Refinery29’s Make a DIY Breton Striped Shirt with Spray Paint


What trends are you excited for this coming season?



All photos from their respective authors, or from