Friday, August 30, 2019

It's On The Bag

Hello Readers. Back in the Spring I went to an antique show. My sister-in-law gave me a ticket and off I went. (Thanks J.) It was fun and I got a free gift.

 I got this tote bag with my ticket. It's super-cute... if you like campers. Or camping. Or the outside world of nature. My friends, I need to honest. I am not a camper. I have nothing against the great outdoors but I am not a great outdoors-woman. I am allergic to a lot of it and it doesn't seem to be a place where I do well. So what am I going to do with a bag with a camper on it?

Well, I started by painting over the camper with some off-white paint I had in the craft cabinet.

The camper and trees were gone. But what about the name of the town? It was nice there but I haven't been back to the town since the antique fair. Did I want the name on my bag? Not really.

I painted over the name of the town with black paint. I also Googled pictures of sewing machines. I found some silhouettes of machines and had my husband sketch the shape on my bag where the camper was. (If you don't have a husband who can sketch, just trace a picture you print out from a Google search.)

I also painted a heart over the sewing machine. I wanted red, but I didn't have any red paint. Pink would do fine. The heart covered up a little more of the camper and trees. I was all done. I let it all dry overnight.

I had a great new one-of-a-kind bag that had nothing to do with camping.

Thanks for reading along, now go make something fun for yourself.
 ***Year End update-A favorite for sure.

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

The Shiny Gold One

Hello Readers. Sometimes I find clothes that I like but they don't fit well. Or they don't fit at all. That's OK, a little sewing fixes everything.

 This dress was fabulous and a little shiny but it was too small on top. I couldn't get into it. The best part of the dress was that great skirt. 
 I also loved this high neck top. It was a little big and the armholes were so big that all kinds of stuff was hanging out when I raised my arms. It needed to be altered.
 Could these pieces be a good combination?

I started by cutting the top of the dress off. That's right I cut it off. The top was made of lace and it was not in good condition. It wasn't worth saving. I did save that waistband to use as a quick way to finish the skirt.

I cut right through the zipper. I just unzipped it all the way down and cut in between the metal teeth of the zipper. Then I could fold the ends of the zipper into the waistband and stitch them down. I do this often to create a waistband and it always works.

I didn't try to make a fancy waistband. I just used a zigzag stitch to close it all up where I cut it off the dress. It won't really show when I wear the skirt.

I had to take the sides of this shirt in so the armholes were not so low. It is still loose and comfortable now but everything stays covered when I raise my arms.

I love the new outfit. It is fun and comfortable. The loose top hangs over the waistband and covers my quick and easy waistband sewing.

I like how both of these pieces turned out. This shirt is going to be a new favorite layering piece going into fall weather.

Thanks for reading along, now go make something fun for yourself.
 ***Year End update-I love this whole outfit. The shirt matches everything and there is no cleavage to worry about.

Friday, August 23, 2019

The Back to School Shirt

Hello Readers. It is "Back-to-School" time in most of the U.S. Do other countries start the school year in late August or early September? I'm not sure.....but I have a fun project for you! This is a great shirt with a school theme. It's perfect for teachers, school kids, homeschoolers, parents really excited about school... and no sewing is required.

You need any white cotton t-shirt. The thicker the fabric, the easier this project will be. 
(I learned this the hard way.) You also need a blue and pink fabric markers. Regular markers will not work well for this project.

 I put something inside of the shirt in case the marker went through to the back of the shirt. I tried to draw straight horizontal blue lines across the front of the shirt. My shirt was very thin and stretchy. The shirt stretched when I wrote on it. It would have been better if the shirt was not stretchy, it would have been easier to draw my lines. It's OK, it doesn't need to be perfect. This project is supposed to be fun. Don't stress about it. The mistakes are all part of the fun.

I drew one pink vertical line on the left. I let the lines dry over night. The next day I searched around for something round and found this bottle. I wanted to make the 3 holes on the left that notebook paper has. I painted the top of the bottle and used it as a giant stamp.

I made 3 big gray dots and let that dry over night too. I kept something inside the shirt so the paint wouldn't go through to the back. Newspaper or cardboard will work for this.

You can wear this shirt to school. Or to shop for school supplies. Or to meet the teacher. Or at home while you homeschool your kids. Or anywhere!

Thanks for reading along, now go make something fun for yourself.
***Year End update-  This shirt was so useful. It was part of a "Rock, Paper, Scissors" costume at Halloween. I wore white jeans with it and my costume was ready.

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

The Black Beaded Skirt?

Hello Readers. Look at this beautiful linen skirt I found at a clothes swap. I fell in love with that bead work. And I always love basic black.

The skirt was a little too big. I thought about taking it in on the sides so it would fit better. It would still be so long on me I didn't think that would work. And there was no way I was going to cut into that beading to make a new hem. I had to find a way to make this skirt wearable without hurting even one bead! Look at the beads!
*No beads were harmed during this refashion.
The only idea I had was to make a dress. Could I make a dress? I could try! I started by adding straps made of some black grosgrain ribbon I had on hand. That was good but the body of my new dress was really shapeless.

I thought adding a sash in the back would create some shape and make it look more like a dress. I liked it but the top was really baggy on the sides as you can see. This makes sense because the skirt was cut to fit some hips and backside in that area. I tried to make it fit closer without being tight. The skirt had NO stretch, it had to stay loose fitting.

I turned it inside out and removed some of that excess fabric. I removed more than you see here, but this photo shows the Lego toys my little guy was playing with as he "helped" me with my sewing.

There was a zipper in the back so I folded the sides in and made a deep V in the back. This gave me room to get in and out and it looked so elegant. I loved it. There was problem with this, how would I wear a bra with this low back? I didn't have an answer. 
(I am 47 y'all, I am not going bra-less!)
I also closed the slit down at the hem. It made it easier to walk when this was a skirt but now it was dangerously high cut.

I added a small piece of stretchy black material to fill in the V. I thought this would cover my back and let me get in and out. It didn't look nearly as good though. It pulled and felt uncomfortable. The back of the dress was sooth and flat before I added this extra piece.
 This picture is overexposed so you can see the added piece of fabric.

I love this dress, and I will remove the stretch piece. I can wear the dress over a fitted T-shirt. It would have a casual vibe to it and I could wear normal undergarments. That's a win-win!

Thanks for reading along, now go make something fun for yourself.
 ***Year End update-I loved the way this looked with the open back. I put it away for winter but I still like it.

Friday, August 16, 2019

The Dingy Dress

Hello Readers. I made a skirt and covered containers from this colorful dress. This dress fit well enough but the "white" bodice was not so white anymore. It was kind "gray-ish" and didn't look great. So what to do with it?

Time does bad things to our clothing. Life, water, and laundry detergent all take a toll on clothes. This white part of this dress was not a nice bright white anymore. I really liked the colorful fabric, so I saved as much of it as I could.

I decided to cut off the "bad" part. That left me with a skirt. 

I got a piece of elastic that was the right length to go around my waist. I attached it to the cut edge of the skirt. I wanted to make a comfortable waistband. (Momma's got to eat!) I used a zigzag stitch and put the elastic under the edge.I pulled gently to stretch it a little.

Then I turned the elastic in and under and used a straight stitch and pulled the elastic so it was stretched as I was sewing. The elastic got smaller again when I let it go. It will give and stretch as I put it on.

It makes a nice smooth waistband and it only takes a few minutes. Complicated sewing? Ain't nobody got time for that!

 But what about the top of that dress? The "white" top was not useful for anything but the sleeves still look great. What could I do with them? And what is that oatmeal container doing with my sewing?

The sleeves fit really well on the oatmeal container. They look like cute decorative containers now.

I used a bit of glue to help the silky fabric stay put. I tucked the extra material into the container for now. I will cut off the excess later.

I took the purple tops and removed all the cardboard from the lids. It was a bit of a battle, but I was victorious!

The purple went really well with my fabric. That was a nice bonus. These will be great to hold my sewing scissors, but they could be used for a million things.

Thanks for reading along, now go make something fun for yourself.
 ***Year End update- I gave this skirt to my daughter so I have not worn it again. The 2 cans are on my sewing table holding scissors.

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

The Dress From Long Ago

Hello Readers. Some times clothes sit and wait quite a while to get refashioned at my house. This bright cotton turquoise dress has been waiting a long time. I found it at a clothes swap and no one else wanted it.

 Today's post is like a flash from the past. I have had this dress for over 2 years. I used some of it in 2017 to add some length to this shirt. I took the lowest tier from the skirt and added it to the hem. 

Now back to 2019, I had a shorter dress that still didn't fit but I loved that gauzy wrinkled cotton.

I decided to make a top with a nice peplum ruffle at the bottom. I cut off the bottom tier of the skirt and all the polyester lining that went with it to connect the tiers.

I took the sides in a little so it would fit better.

Here is a side view. I made sure the armholes were not too big.

There were 2 places at the neckline that were gathered together. I used them and made them a little bigger so the neckline would be pulled in and up a little more.

 I decided to make some cropped pants from my daughters hand-me-downs. Again. I am a little obsessed. I had to cut off almost a foot of fabric. Again. I gave them a quick hem and they were ready to wear. Honestly, I don't love them, I think they make me look even shorter. They are great in the oppressive heat of late summer, so I know I will wear them.

I liked the shirt even better than I thought I would. It's a new favorite.
           *Photo edited to make me look taller.                                             

    Thanks for reading along, now go make something fun for yourself.
 ***Year End update-This is still a great top. I only wore it in the summer. The gauzy fabric seemed like a summer weiht to me. It is waiting in the closet for net summer.