Posts Tagged ‘diy’

It’s like a wearable disco ball!

I may swear off of sequins for a while, this dress was almost the death of me.  There are still some little things that I’m not completely satisfied with but there really isn’t much I can do about it except to start over…like that’s gonna happen. :D

So here it is for your viewing pleasure.  If you would like to see it up close and personal, feel free to drop by Fabricland at 1352 Weber Street N in Kitchener where it will be on display for the next few months.

All that glitters…a quick tute to extend the life of a pair of kids pants.

K, so I’m not done the sparkle dress yet, it is cut out and waiting for me to do.  In the meantime I made up a couple of pillows using another sequin fabric we had at work.  I had a bit left over so I decided that it would be great for fixing a pair of my daughters pants.

She got a pair of jeans from the Salvation army a few months back during one of their dollar sales.  She loved them, wore them all the time and then the inevitable happened.  She got holes in the knees.  The pants were starting to get a bit short anyhow but they still fit in the waist.  Fixing them wouldn’t be a problem since the style already had a seam right around the knee area so all I had to do was cut of the legs at the seams, use the cut off bottom portions as pattern pieces and add new fancy bottoms to her pants!

Here’s what I did, you can adapt this to any pair of pants and the fabric you choose can be gender appropriate of course.

Materials:
Old jeans
Scissors
fabric for new pant legs
iron

I split the pants up the side seam and trimmed the leg off at the seam that was at the knee.   If your pants don’t have this particular seam (and they probably don’t since this is purely for design) just cut off the pant leg slightly above the knee (or just below would work too) so the seam doesn’t run directly across the knee.  Nothing is more uncomfortable than a line of bulky fabric right across the kneecap.

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I was instructed to keep the little embroidered girl on the right leg so I cut it out to put it back on the new leg as an applique.  Next I ironed the jean pant leg so the seams were out flat.  Then used it as a pattern piece to cut out the new legs.  I added some length to the new ones while I was at it so she could get some more time out of the pants.

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Then I just sewed the new pant legs on, sewed up the side seams and hemmed them.

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Some thoughts on this project:

The type of fabric you use will determine the final look of the pant.  Choosing a more casual fabric would have given the pants a more casual look.  Choose your fabric based on your child’s favourite colours, prints etc and try to choose something that is similar to the pants fabric.  The fabric I used was a thicker knit but the jeans had a lot of stretch to them so the two fabrics actually worked out well together.

This works for boys pants too, just choose fabrics more suited to your little man.

This is a great way to reinforce knees too.  create a double layer of fabric across the knee and a single layer of fabric for the lower portion of the leg.

Use your imagination, straight legged pants can become flared leg pants and vice versa.  Just add a strip of fabric an inch or so above the hem if all you need is to add some length and the pant leg is in good shape.

For the Love of Buttons!

I love buttons.  I get excited seeing a jar of random buttons, all the colours and shapes.  I wonder what the buttons were on before they landed in my possesion.  I wonder how old they are, what their purpose was etc.  It’s a strange obessesion really and this morning I found a reason to get my buttons out to use them. :)

I had received a bunch of clothes from a friend, for my daughter.  one of the items in the bag was a pair of plain white tights.  My daughter wore them the very next day and promptly put a hole in them.

I let her wear them for a while like that and then decided today, as I was doing some mending, that perhaps I should attempt to fix them.  Embellished tights are really popular on the runways right now, though I have yet to really see them on anyone in the normal world.  I felt this would be the perfect thing to fix the hole in the tights and to use my buttons.  I googled embellished tights first to get some inspiration.  Cocorosa’s tutorial had caught my eye a few months back and it was one of the top hits when I did my google search.  Park and Cube has a cute one too.

Anyhow, I gathered my materials:

Parker’s tights with the hole in them
thread and needle
buttons
plastic water bottle
scissors

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I started by sorting out the buttons I wanted to use.  I have a thing for green and pink right now and I had lots of those button colours so I sorted them out and put the rest away for another day.

In order to start mending the hole I needed something hard to put in the leg of the tights so that it would stretch it out a bit as well as keep me from stitching through both layers of the leg.  This is where the water bottle came in.  I put it in the leg of the tights where I wanted to put the buttons.  Then I threaded my needle, made a knot and started stitching on buttons.

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Once I finished mending the hole and had more buttons on the leg I decided to have my daughter try them on so I could see how it was looking.  I then marked some more spots to put buttons.

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And voila! Tights are as good as new and they look pretty cool too!

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Now that it’s fall, I need swimsuits…

Of course, it’s logical right? It figures, as soon as the temperature drops and the leaves are on the ground I find myself in need of swimsuits for the kids not to mention, I had cleaned out their summer stuff a few weeks ago.  I put away what may fit next year, sorted out what can go to goodwill and what can go to consignment and lastly threw out what wasn’t going to fit and was not in any shape to pass on.  Their swimsuits were in that last category and I thought, oh well, it’s not like they will be going swimming anytime soon.  yeah. right.

My in-laws have generously paid for swim lessons for the kids.  We registered them at the beginning of the week.  Their first lesson is on Saturday, it’s now Thursday and I realized they have no swim suits.  So I set about making them some.

Patrick’s suit was easy.  Remember these shorts? If you missed the post, click the photo.
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I took a pair of Parker’s underpants and removed the elastic.  Then I stitched them to the waistband of the shorts on the inside.  There. done. swim shorts. lol!

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For Parker’s suit I used a kwiksew pattern for a dance leotard.  It’s discontinued but if you are interested in looking it up it’s Kwiksew 2263.  I left the sleeves off and I still have to put some elastic in it but it seems to fit her well and should serve it’s purpose.  I used some black poly lycra knit for the top portion and this ruffled lycra that a friend gave me a small piece of.  I lined the bottom with the same fabric the top was made out of.  I think both suits took about 1 hr to put together (that’s figuring in time to put the elastic in).

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And there it is.  The kids are ready for swim lessons!

Spider-Patrick and Witchy Parker (thrifty costumes since I hate spending money if I don’t have to)

The Halloween costumes are done! well, almost, I still have to put some elastic in the boy’s spiderman suit but otherwise things are done.

Patrick is gonna be spiderman.  For anyone that knows him, this will not come as a shock.  He is enraptured with spiderman.  It’s gonna be a cold Halloween so I wanted to make his costume warm.

I used polar fleece and a pyjama pattern that had a two piece, footed pyjama.  I had bought a remnant of red fleece at work and decided it was time to part with a royal blue polar fleece sweater that I had purchased at Old Navy ages ago.  I traced out the pattern for the pj’s on wax paper so I could work out the design and not destroy my pattern.

I cut out the blue and red pieces using a spiderman toy as guidance.  I then pieced everything together and other than sewing on the applique and doing the hems, I did everything on the serger.  I then used black paint to re-create the spiderweb design.

Since I’m planning for him to wear this overtop of his shoes, I left the sole off the bottom of the pj feet.  After Halloween, I’ll sew the soles on and he will  have nice, warm spiderman pj’s! (The pants will fit better once I have the elastic in the waist and ankles).

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Parker decided she was going to be a witch.  I had some variegated green satin with gold sparkles on it that was leftover from a dress I made a few months back.  I made her a witchy dress from that and a hat as well.  I bought some spiderweb fabric from work ($1.99/meter! and I only needed about .6 of a meter)

I used the spiderweb fabric to make a cape, sleeves and decoration on the hat.  I’m going to have her wear a long sleeve shirt and pants with her costume so she wont’ freeze to death but I don’t think that will detract from the outfit. :)

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All in all, I think I spent under $10 bucks total to make these. 

Cost breakdown:
Green satin fabric- $0 (on hand)
Blue fleece sweater- $0 (on hand)
red fleece remnant- $3
spiderweb fabric – $1.50
black paint – $0 (on hand)
interfacing for the hat – $1 (clearance)

Even if I had to pay for all the materials I probably would have spent between $15 and $20 dollars total.  Not too bad considering the costumes in the store are about that much each. :)

Fit to be tied.

So yesterday I visited Tamara at Rare Funk where some of my kid stuff is for sale.  I had some new baby bibs to drop off and I wanted to discuss how things were selling.

The bibs I make seem to do well.  I usually make them with recycled fabrics and scraps that I applique on them.  One design that does really well are the ones for the boys that have a tie on them.  It’s a cute way to dress up the little man and it keeps his clothes protected from drool and such.

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My problem is that the t-shirts and onesies I make are just not selling.  In order to clear out my stock to make room for new stuff, from October 1st to Christmas all my older stock at Rare Funk will be on sale for 50% off.  It’s a great time to get an original gift for your favourite little punk!

The shirts and onesies I make get lots of compliments but rarely any sales so I’m hoping that I can get some insight into why they aren’t moving and what you may be looking for when shopping for clothing for little ones, whether it’s for your own offspring or a gift for someone else.      As a thanks for completing this poll, your name will be entered into a draw for a custom sized bowling shirt.  The shirt will be made from black poly/cotton with a fun contrast stripe, collar and pocket in a boyish or girlish print (depending on who the shirt will be for :D )  I’ll make the draw on November 1st so the shirt can be completed and delivered/picked-up in time for Christmas.

Click Here to take survey

After my discussion with Tamara we both agreed that fun boy clothes are in fairly high demand so I tried out a thought last night.  Let me know what you think!

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How to squeeze one more year out of a kid’s t-shirt

So my Daughter started school today and was very excited about it.  She got herself dressed but when she came downstairs I noticed the shirt she was wearing was about 3 inches too short in the arms and body so in addition to her belly hanging out, she looked like she had gorilla arms! lol!  That and she had obviously worn this while painting one day and it was covered with little paint spatters.

I had her change her shirt and off to school she went.  When I got home I decided to see if I could get one more year out her shirt.  She has three of the same shirt (my mom found them on sale for a buck somewhere) and I knew they would all be fitting the same so I took the black shirt and the purple shirt and put them together to make a ‘new’ shirt.

Here’s the black shirt before:

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and here’s the purple shirt before:

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I love how the grease stains on the purple shirt show up so much more prominently in the photo than they do in real life.  Yeah, laundry is not my forte and my daughter has a hard time understanding the difference between her shirt and a napkin.

Anyhow, first thing I did was cut the sleeves off of the black shirt.  I didn’t measure anything, just eyeballed it and used the first sleeve cutoff to measure the second sleeve so they were even.

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I needed to add about 3 inches to the length of the sleeve which worked out that I could simply cut off the purple sleeves at the underarm point.

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I needed to add approximately the same amount the bottom of the shirt so I cut off the bottom portion of the purple shirt that equaled the length I needed to add plus the hem allowance of the black shirt.

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I then inserted the purple piece I just cut off in the bottom of the black shirt, matched the side seams and lined up the cut edge with the top edge of the hem. Then I stitched around the hem of the black shirt to attach the two pieces making sure to follow the stitch line of the original hem.  I used purple thread but you can use a matching thread.

Next I matched up the sleeve edges, right sides together and serged them together.  You can use a straight stitch instead, knit fabrics tend to be resistant to fraying so there really isn’t much need to finish the edges.

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So here’s how the shirt should look at this point.

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In order to give the sleeves the look of being layered I flipped the seam up and stitched a “hem” around the black part of the sleeve.

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I wanted to try and cover up some the paint spatters on the front of the shirt.  Reverse applique is my favourite thing at the moment so I decided to put some reverse appliqued flowers on the front.  It didn’t completely get rid of the paint splatter but I think it looks very cool now.

I cut the sleeves and front from the back of what was left of the purple shirt.  I used the back since it was less stained and slightly bigger than the front.  I turned the shirt inside out and pinned the purple to the front.

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Next I turned it right side out again and drew my design on the shirt.  Then I simply used a straight stitch and went around the design a couple of times.

I trimmed the excess purple from edges on the back and then cut out the black inside the petals.

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And voila! New shirt that should last at least one more year before she completely grows out of it.

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Some thoughts on this project.

To lengthen the sleeves you don’t have to cut the sleeves short, you can just add to the hem of the sleeves similar to how I added length to the hem of the shirt.

If you don’t have enough to lengthen the sleeves, just cut them off and hem them as short sleeves, that way they can’t be too short. :)

You can leave the front of the shirt plain, sew on an embellishment, iron on a patch, embroider something, it’s really up to you.  I just really like reverse applique. :D

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