Jillian Owens is a writer, designer, and eco-fashion revolutionary.   A Columbia SC transplant, she graduated from the University of South Carolina with a BFA in Theatre and English.  When she’s not gallivanting about, she’s busy at her day job as a Search Engine Marketing Manager at . Jillian has been featured on Good Morning America, Buzzfeed, The Associated Press, Bored Panda, My Modern Met, Daily Mail, Cosmopolitan (French), Elle (French), The Gloss, , , ABC ColumbiaJasper MagazineSkirt, , The Free Times, , and.  


113 thoughts on “Bio

  1. I also found your blog through Pinterest, and I am telling all of my friends about it. It is amazing what you have done with rejected clothing. You have inspired me to see many things differently. I even see my husbands old clothes differently. I can’t wait to try and make some of the things you have featured in your blog. It will save me a lot of money. Thanks Refashionesta!!!!!!

    1. This will apply to short cap sleeves and sleeveless tops or dresses but a huge problem nonetheless for gals with small arms but bigger than average girls: I have looked at quite a few of your ideas and am so very impressed that you can see what’s possible out of would I would give away. I have sewn both tailored and home dec but you have put my skills to shame. I also noticed you have small arms which is something I often have problems with especially in read-to-wear and the all to familiar armhole “gape” which shows whatever color bra you happen to wear should you choose to (and as you get older must). This is especially true in a sleeveless. The bodice is always set too low. My only fix was to take it up in the shoulders but I still run into problems like recently with one that had a front and a back shoulder yoke. Any suggestions? I can fix a pattern but alterations drive me mad.

  2. Not even sure how I came upon your blog but so glad I did! You’re amazing! Since I discovered it 2 days ago, I’ve been snipping and stitching my way thru my closet of things destined for Goodwill and many items have been given new life. As we speak, there’s a dress being dyed that I hope to wear to an event Saturday night. Thank you for your amazing creativity and humor..also, I just love some of the faces you make in the “before” pictures! You’re so adorable!

  3. Wow, I spent my entire Saturday evening going through all your blog entries and outfit remakes and had so much fun! Today I was at the Goodwill store with a very open mind. What fun I had. I was able to look past colour, size and length…what a new experience for me! I now have two dresses ready to be made into tops, and a skirt and top ready to be dyed to the colour of my choice. Who knew! Thanks for the inspiration and the savings on my new/old clothes.

  4. I just adore your refashions. You are talented and very creative. I am a preschool teacher and lately it has been my goal to help my preschoolers see beyond what is in front of them to what something could be. I have been inspired by you to incorporate that idea into my life as well. Now I just need to learn to sew… Thank you!

  5. Thanks for the fast response and for sharing that. Not everyone like to tell their size. I understand how crazy sizing is. I’m 5’8″ish and I wear from a 4 to a 12 and skis for shoes-9.5 to 10. :-)

    I buy most of my clothes from our local Goodwill and sometimes it’s even harder to figure out sizing. Things have been washed and shrunk or worn and stretched. I try not to get too caught up on what size things are. I just love the thrill of the hunt.

  6. Love your blog and can’t wait to see what else you come up with :) I’ve been sewing for 15 years and am long accustomed to making my own clothes (as well as my daughter’s), but even that can get expensive :P I think I’m going to find a thrift store in this stupid military town and see what I can come up with as far as alterations. Maybe I can start saving some money! XD Thanks for being an inspiration for us all, from beginners to more advanced sewers, I’m sure we can all draw some inspiration from your before and after pictures. My Nana taught me a long time ago, don’t picture it the way it is, picture it with the fabric you want and the things you could change (in reference to sewing patterns, of course). Can’t wait to see more from you!!!!

  7. I just started following you thanks to a recommendation by I was cruising around looking at old postings, feeling inspired to take my pile of “I can fix this” thrift store finds over to my sewing machine (Thank you) when I discovered you are a South Carolina girl! I live in the upstate also. Suddenly the world seemed a bit smaller. I thought you were in NYC or some other super classy trendy city. You amaze me! Thank you for getting me inspired again.

  8. My girlfriend directed me to your blog; I’m in Ottawa (Canada), and I’ve been making or modifying clothes to fit my shape for the last 10 years. Mind you I’m a 5’8″ chinese lady who LOVES primary colors; so it’s even harder to find clothes that aren’t pastels or florals, and/or don’t clash with my skin tone, lol. Love your remakes on the dresses; they’ve inspired me to review the dresses that I was going to donate to Value Village (thrift store in Canada), and see if I can’t breathe new life into them. Loved the polka dot dress remake!

  9. You are so very inspiring! I am a recent high school graduate who is thinking about majoring in Theatre too (with a backup plan of course). Plus, believe it or not, I’ve always wanted to learn to sew. I remember my grandmother trying to teach me and me completely screwing it up. Soo…I haven’t touched the amazing sewing machine of death in some years but you’ve given me reason to try it again. It’s just so fantastic how you’re not only being fashionable but also, you’re making a difference in the environment, helping the less fortunate, AND teaching others they can do the same! You’re awesome!…and I don’t that to just any blogger. Haha but seriously, please keep up your awesomeness!

  10. I LOVE your blog! I am 27 and from the suburbs of Chicago where having STYLE is a necessity! You have insprired me to not only learn how to sew (with a hand me down machine from my mom), but to be more adventerous with fashion! Hello leather jacket and red flower dress refash i.e Katy Perry. I died over that piece! My New Years Resolution was to wear everything in my closet at least once, in a new way, before purchasing something new. Thanks to you and your inspiration I’ve found myself going back to the “donate” pile looking for ways to re-fash again and again!…and I have to share, scored a pair of Tory Burch flats during my first trip to Goodwill. Can’t beat that!Keep the posts coming girl, you rock!
    Your friend in fashion-Jessica

  11. I am having so much fun clicking through your work. I have a barely used sewing machine that is going to get quite the work out this winter! Since having my second child, my body is a totally different shape (and changing by the day!) so it’s hard to find clothes that fit and look good. Your blog has given me new hope that I don’t have to rely on clothing companies to make clothes that look good on me, I can make them myself! Thanks so much for what you do.

  12. I just stumbled upon your blog and I am so glad that I did! I love everything about it! You have deeply inspired me. Your lovable, easygoing, and caring personality has made me a fan :D (I don’t say that to just anybody!) I even refashioned some of my clothes the same day I found your blog! Thank you and keep doing what you do!

  13. I love love LOVE your blog.
    And I don’t really follow any blogs…that is, until now.
    My boyfriend and I are constantly going to yard sales during our free time, and we usually score some pretty awesome pieces of whatever for low prices. I can be pretty obsessive when getting a good deal, and this is yet another fun activity I can do to fuel that obsessive desire!
    Your blog has inspired me to try refashioning…but first, I must learn the basics of sewing…
    Thanks for existing!

  14. Jillian, you’re going to turn me into a hoarder! I see projects everywhere now. I just love watching your transformations. My mother was a seamstress who sewed clothes for me and my siblings, not that we appreciated it at the time. You’ve inspired me to dust off my mom’s old machine and dare to try. The lovely thing about re-fashions is that I don’t feel any pressure because I have such good examples and the cost of mistakes is so low! Thank you for inspiring me!

  15. Hi, Jillian, I found your blog a couple of years ago and have had a blast seeing all the work you do. This year, I finally decided to attempt it myself. :) I’ve done small things before, but it’s go big or go home now! My first project is making a Halloween costume for my daughter out of a bridesmaid dress. Should be fun!

  16. I used to dabble in refashioning, many years ago in my teens, then again 5 yrs ago after my daughter was born. But I lost my sewjo, dumped crap over my machine and sewing table and just stopped. I found you through Pinterest this week and I’ve spent hours going through your posts over the last few days, even sharing some with my 8 yr old son. We both think you are rather awesome at this gig. And now I have my sewjo back! Off to the local thrift store tomorrow! Calloo callay! Thank you.

  17. I found your blog through pinterest and have been hooked! I started reading it from the beginning, and even my 3 year old daughter looks over my shoulder every once in awhile and says “ooh, pretty!!” You have such a huge heart, and your ideas about keeping clothing/trash out of the landfills and repurposing everyday items that one would normally toss because they are stained or out of date are fabulous and note-worthy. My favorite thing to do is scour thrift store racks for that unique shirt or dress, but I have zero skill with a sewing machine and am terrified to start so i’ve always played it safe and picked up stellar finds that fit me already. If it doesn’t fit me, it stays on the rack, and i’ve left the thrift stores many a time disappointed and saying ‘what if?’. Now you’ve given me a whole new outlook on not only what I can turn something INTO…but who I can turn myself into. Your journey has been inspiring and I am looking forward to reading more posts in the future!! Keep up the great work and continue having fun being yourself!

  18. You are amazing! You’ve inspired and motivated me to continue fulfilling what I love to do. I have never sewed my whole life. And my husband bought me a sewing a few months ago…I tried sewing a circle skirt a few months ago just by looking at tutorials. Since then I have never put my sewing machine to rest. It is so much fun. I love thrift shopping too. As a matter of fact, all my clothes are from thrifting. I enjoy refashioning clothes and your blog has inspired me to do more. Thank you!

  19. So I can’t remember now which of my friends linked me to your blog but I’m so glad I stumbled upon it. I’m an intermediate sewer myself and have been shopping at thrift stores and fixing clothes all my life, but never quite like you. You’ve inspired me to take a look at my closet and refashion things instead of getting rid of them. Also I just read your entire archive in the past week and its so great to see how much you’ve improved and the more daring refashions you do with years of practice. Youre awesome

  20. Hiya Jillian hope your wellies are coping with the rain and you don’t need a boat ; )

    I live in UK it rains much here and local roads are prone to flooding.
    Gorgeous fun to look forward and see what you’ve been whirring and chopping, and when there’s no emails I check out some of the other days.

    I would love to know how you do the behind the scenes techy stuff, like the photos, are these done with a camera or phone? What are you doing with all the upmodalled clothes you say you don’t keep them?

    Do you have a forum where we can show/discuss/request suggestions for sewing projects? – I have bought 2 bargain size 8 dresses for £1 each because I liked the prints I’m a size 18! Now I wonder what to turn them into…

    Smiffy xx

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