One of my favorite blogs is called “365 Dresses,” which is where young Marissa of southern California, takes outdated, ugly or damaged items of clothing, and turns them into something chic – usually a dress or top of some sort, but occasionally she'll make accessories. Being young and thin, most everything looks good on her anyway. Also, living in southern California, one of the warmest places in the U.S., certainly affects her style choices (like eliminating sleeves from a lot of the items).
In my own creative way , I've done something similar by transforming objects with one purpose into something completely different.
1) a t-shirt and tea towel into a pillowcase – I decided to make this because the t-shirt was way too big to wear (I already have enough nightshirts), and wanted to preserve the towel from getting too dingy. All I did was cut out the body of the t-shirt so it was more or less rectangular, and then sew it back to back against the tea towel. Someday I hope to learn how to create buttonholes so I can close up the open end.
2) two cloth tote bags into two pillows – Needless to say I have plenty of bags, including totes, so I decided to make them into cushions. First I cut off the handles and removed the pockets, then ripped out the stitching so each was a single square. I then pinned the squares back to back before sewing them on my machine. I think they look pretty good if I do say so myself. My cat particularly likes them too as she sleeps next to them (on an Ikea chair) in our spare bedroom.
3) The pockets I now use to hold spare batteries in my camera case – didn't do anything too them, but someday might stitch the openings to stop the fraying of the material.
4) a Christmas ornament turned into a necklace – It's an ornament in the shape of a martinin glass I believe, which I recently purchased in an after Christmas sale. Although it's a little big, I thought it would still be kind of cute. After trying different chains, I settled on a black shoelace-like string that I probably took off another necklace. Cheap and cheerful jewelry!
5) a couple keychains turned into necklaces – I recall, in the last few years, taking at least a couple of my keychains and putting them on sterling silver chains where they would get more use worn around my neck, than tossed into a box with the rest of my keychain collection. One was a miniature Diana camera I ordered from Lomography.com and the other was a heavy silver keychain with a picture (drawn in black) on it and some words in German below (a souvenir from Austria).