Ack, that sounds so serious!
This post has nothing to do with cleaning, let me tell you. It has to do with having/finding a piece of clothing that is only one small stain (or ugly design) away from usability. I should call it "Save That Shirt"! LOL This will open your eyes to keeping those cherished onesies, shirts, and pants that fell prey to spills. Or, in my case, taking advantage of a super-affordable item that has a less-than-ideal picture on it. Now I'm lamenting all the cute clothes I tossed that had stains or sports on them...and now I'm also spending more at Goodwill! (Like that needed to happen...)
Figure out what design or picture you want on your item and sketch it out to get a feel for the size. Caspian chose Plex, and fortunately settled for just his head. He'd outgrown all of his light outerwear, and I found a great hoodie at our Habitat for Humanity ReStore for 50¢. Well, it was great except for the yucky football screenprint on the chest.
Take some felt (on sale 8-for-$1) and some embroidery thread (which you probably already have) and, in my case, a button from my late grandmother-in-law's sewing stash.
Then make-over your hoodie! Granted, I wouldn't have chosen a grey design for a grey hoodie, but I didn't have silver felt and Caspian wanted Plex, end of story. :) I positioned all my pieces, then Fabri-tac-ed the layers together and stitched each piece down before Fabri-tac-ing them down to the next piece. I hand-sewed the button on (it's Caspian's favorite part). At the end, I fray-checked all the threads and knots on the backside. Can you find the feature I forgot to topstitch...?
Think of all the possibilities! Coordinate a plain shirt to match a patterned skirt, personalize with monograms, the mind reels! Felt is so inexpensive and user-friendly. I was totally inspired and empowered by my IRL friend Andrea, who is a felt appliqué goddess. Just look at this, and this, and this, and this, and this, and THIS, and oh my gosh THIS (I know, it's not felt, but wow). You can do this with fleece too, which you also don't have to finish, or you can use regular fabric, which will fray. For now, I'm sticking with felt.
Got plenty more in-progress pics to come!