Sunday, February 27, 2011

Repurposing Week: Day 6 Shirt

I have an OLD shirt that I love!  But it was white and the arm pits are so yellow now that I can't even wear it out of the house.  I mean, I have had the shirt for like 4 years but still....I have a hard time getting rid of clothes.  There were a couple of things about the shirt I just loved.  One thing I didn't like was that the sleeves were a little too small.  Once I had worn the shirt for a couple of hours they would stretch out and then my undergarments would show.  I decided to recycle my shirt.  However, I didn't want to completely get rid of it so I decided to just completely re-make it.  How you may ask?  Well, I have a bunch of white REALLY nice cotton shirts from my mother in law that she gave me a while ago but they are all huge on me.  I have done a couple of things with them.  I made the beanie from the beginning of the week.  Usually I just slept in them.  I decided I would turn one of these shirts into my old shirt.  This is the old shirt

See how nasty the pits are?  they look worse in person, trust me.  Gross I know.  I had a picture of the plain white shirt I am using but my memory card wasn't in my camera when I took it.  DOH!  Don't you just hate that?  Please tell me I am not the only one who does that?

Any ways.  Like I said I took some pictures but my memory card wasn't in my camera so I have to just tell you what I did for a while until I can update you with a picture.  I took the old shirt and laid it on top of the new shirt.  I cut the new shirt to match the old shirt.  I cut the sides up and I cut the sleeves off ( the new shirts sleeves are big so this helps me alter them if I cut them off and resew them on. )  I cut all the way up to the shoulders and then left the shirt sewn at the top.  I then too the old shirt and cut the lace off from the middle.  I wanted to transfer it to the new shirt.  I then pinned it down and sewed it to my new shirt in the exact same spot.  Next comes the fun part!  The thing I LOVE about this shirt is the tie around the middle that makes it umpire wasted.  I LOVE umpire wasted stuff.  Makes your boobs look big and your waste look smaller if done right.  What's not to like about that?!

This can be done to ANY shirt that is too big around for you.  A big t-shirt for example.  Turn the shirt wrong side out and figure out where you want the tie to go.  I use the sides of the shirt I cut off and cut strips long enough for the sides.  I pinned it down.  AFTER I pinned it down I realized that I don't want to sew this down without putting in ties themselves.  Since I am using an old shirt I didn't have to find something. If you are making it from scratch you can do a number of things.  You can use shoe laces, lace, ribbon or you can make your own.  Making your own would be a pain but it can be done.  Pin that down then pin the strips on top like this

Here is a close up of what it looks like ( but this is before I realized I needed to put the strings in first.  )

Now sew down both sides of each.  Notice I didn't do the center of the shirt because I have the lace embellishment there.  If you are doing this on a new shirt, you can leave the center free or do it all the way across.  Be careful NOT to sew the lace down to the fabric.  You want it to be free inside the casing you are making.  Once those sides are done, I did the same thing to the back of the shirt. This time it was a continuous strip all the way along the back.

Once you have that done you are ready to sew the shirt back together along the sides.  DO NOT SEW ACROSS THE MIDDLE WHERE YOU PUT YOUR NEW STRINGS.  Make sure it looks like the picture here

I would sew JUST to where the strips started.  Remember we are using a stretch cotton so it will not ravel if you leave the end unsewn.  If you are using a fabric, you are going to want to use fray check or sew a little border there before you sew the sides together.

Once I did the sides, I went ahead and added the sleeves back on.  If you have never done this before it's actually pretty easy. Check out the blog Make It and Love It   She does shirt refashions all the time and gives you step by step instructions on how to do it.

Now you have a shirt!!!   Check out how much longer the sleeves are!  No worries about under clothes showing now.

I was pleased with the results.  THEN I decided to take it one step further. I have SO many white shirts.  I love them. There is just something about a plain white shirt that I LOVE.  I decided to dye this one though.  I had bought a yellow dye forever ago and then never used it.  I thought about using just half of the box of dye and after seeing how yellow it made my stuff I wish I had just used half. This is a little TOO yellow for me but that's okay.

Sorry for the crappy pictures.  It was night time and my house was dark.  If I wasn't lazy I could have gotten out my tripod and set it up and taken a better one but I AM lazy!  haha  I had my ISO bumped up way too high and that's why the picture is so grainy.  I also look really lumpy because I forgot to pull down the tank top I had underneath my shirt when I put the new one on.  Oh well....

The other thing I love about my new shirt is how high up in is on my chest.  The old one would show a little too much.  Especially when bending over and once it got stretched out.

Hopefully you guys found this post useful.  Get a big shirt and make it over.  It is really easy.  This took me about an hour or two.  It's hard to say because I was doing it when the kids were up and so it was off and on for the whole day pretty much.

I have one more make over for you.  I know this one was a day late because I was too tired last night to do it.  So my last one might have to wait until tomorrow.  We shall see how every one is doing later today.  I have two different things that are half done to post and I just have to decide which one to finish and post!

Happy Sunday.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Re-purposing Week: Day 5 ACU Purse

What the heck is an ACU?  Well if you are a military family or live in a military town you probably know the answer.  It's part of their clothes.  I am telling you that military wives usually go crazy for stuff made out of these.  Partly because they have special meaning, especially if they use one their husband actually wore while overseas.  Another reason is because it is more attractive looking then the normal camouflage.  I took a picture of what one looks like.  I only had a top that my friend gave me.  She said she knew I could do something with it and I FINALLY got around to it.  I am pretty sure she gave it to me like 6 to 8 months ago.

These have SO many pockets and since I needed a lot of material I pick all of them off.  This took forever.

Next I figured out how big I wanted my purse to be and I examined the all of the pieces I had to see where I needed to cut.  After much going back and forth I got everything figured out and started sewing. I was doing a tutorial but then it got complicated and I stopped.  I LOVE how this purse came out though and so I plan on making myself one soon and I will do a tutorial with that one.  Here is the finished product

It;s got two side bottle pockets.

It's got two pockets on the back with lift up flaps to keep the stuff in them.

One big pocket inside the purse

and the strap is double sided.  I love it because it is not really big but it is big enough for any mom on the go.

Seriously LOVE it!



I have a CUTE repurposing project for y'all today, however, it is not quite done and I promised my kid we could go to Target.  He is the PICKIEST eater EVER!  I am not just saying that either.   He eats peanut butter, wheat bread or wheat hot dog buns, cheese, carrots and apples.  THANK goodness for the last two!   He will also eat chicken nuggets from about 3 or 4 fast food and OCCASIONALLY will eat an actual hot dog with the hot dog bun.  The other thing he eats and request frequently ( this is SUPER embarrassing to admit publicly on a blog by the way ) is a baby food.  Yup.  Not only is it a baby food but it is the WORSE smelling baby food ever.  It is broccoli and carrots with cheese and I swear it smells the same going down as it does coming up.  It's awful.  He got a leapster for Christmas but we only bought him one game.  We have been bribing him to try new foods to get a new game.  Last night he got the last rock for his rock jar and we get to go buy a game today.  He is really excited.  When I went into his room to get him up before I was even in his room all the way he popped up and said, "Oh good morning mom today is the day we get to get my new game.  Thank you mommy for letting me get a new game!"  haha  He is SO sweet when he is sweet.  And SUCH a stinker when he is mad.

Any ways.  I'll be back this afternoon with a finished product and some pictures.  You won't want to miss it.  By the way, this finished product is going in the etsy shop.  I LOVE how it came out but you'll understand when you see it that it isn't for everyone.  I wish it was for me because I love how it came out.  I feel a new one in the works for me next week ( hopefully with a tutorial too! )

Happy Friday and I'll see y'all later this afternoon.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Repurposing Fool

I have turned into a repurposing fool this week!  I had so many things I wanted to do for projects and it turned into too many to just post one a day.  I wish I had enough time to finish and post things every day like this but it has been a struggle just to get a post up everyday for the last week and a half.  Fun, but a struggle.

I took a shirt that I got for free from a church rummage sale ( seriously I SCORED at that rummage sale! )  I LOVED the color and print but the shirt itself fit weird.  Especially on me who is not skinny any more.  Here is the shirt

Notice the band along the bottom?  Not flattery to someone with a belly.  I would wear it around the house but I would usually end up taking if off because it looked awful.  Finally I decided it was too cute to just be sitting around.  I wanted to make something for my daughter Kayla.  I grabbed one of her shirts the other day and laid it on top of this shirt to get an idea of where to cut.

I cut my shirt up to the arm pits.  Then I cut along the top.  This is striped so it was easy to cut straight.  I wanted to shire the top of this.  If you have not heard of this or have any clue what I am talking about it is cool.  YOu buy elastic thread and wind it around your bobbin.  Then you put regular thread up top and bump the tension on your machine as high as it goes.  Then you start sewing.  Again it was easy because I just followed the pattern of the shirt.   I read some where to leave really big strings after and before each line.  Then you go through and tie knots after you are done and this prevents it from coming apart.  I have a dress from Walmart that has shirring on the top and the dumb thing is coming all apart.  Apparently it wasn't made very well.  What do you except from walmart though right?!

Any ways.  I got a couple of rows done, tie it all down and then you spray it with water and apply steam from your iron.  Watch it shrink up even more.  It's kinda fun!  Oh and I forgot to tell you, I sewed the sides together BEFORE I shirred the dress/top.  I took some extra fabric to make straps and a little bow.  Check out how cute it looks.

And here it is in action...

I am debating on making two changes.  What do y'all think?

1.) I am thinking about taking the bow off of the front and putting it on the back where the straps come together


2.) I am thinking about taking the straps off completely and making sleeves. I have my sleeves left over still and I can easily make them into her size and sew them on the shirt.

Not sure yet but I will most likely do one or the other.  Right now the bow kinda gets lost in her arm pit. Let me tell you how much she loved this though.  It is so sad to me when I make her something and she won't wear it or tries to rip it off. This she was all excited about and even let me put a hair clip in her hair and left it in all day.  She was HAPPY and that makes me HAPPY.  This project cost nothing unless you include the elastic thread that I already had.  And THAT makes me ecstatic!

Can't wait to show you what I have for tomorrow.  Come back and check it out.

Adding to some parties check them out

Fantabulous Friday!

Re-purposing Week: Day 4 TIES

My handsome blue eyed nephew Seth just turned one.   His mommy wants to go get his pictures taken but she wanted him to wear a tie.  That is where I come in.   She told me what colors she wanted and I sent her a picture of all the fabric choices I had on hand.  She picked on out and I got started.  I looked on line at several place.  If you want a really good tutorial with a printable template for OLDER kids, check out purl bee   I had two problems though.  I didn't want a REAL tie because Lauren said Seth pulls on everything.  Second it was TOO big and lastly ( I know I said two but I guess it was 3 haha ) I like figuring things out because then I can make and sell them if I want to.  Using other tutorials usually limits what you can do with the finished product.  So after looking at ties on etsy and the different patterns that were available on there I finally just started making my own.  I had bought a tie at the thrift store when I went with my sister and used it as a template.  This is a great way to figure out how something is made.  This was the first one I came up with.

Cute right?  But can you see my problem?  It was WAAAAAAAAY to long.  My son who is 5 and HUGE for his age could wear it and have it long enough.  SO this meant trying again.  But I didn't want to waste my fabric so I picked something else out from my stash and went to work.  This was try number two

Perfect!  Now I just had to make it AGAIN in the right fabric.  So here is what I ended up with for the Seth man

I can't WAIT to see his pictures because he has the prettiest blue eyes and I can only imagine how blue they are gonna look with this around his neck.

When Seth was a new born I had made him a tie out of an old brown one I got at the thrift store.  ( If you were wondering why this post was supposed to be a repurposing one and so far I haven't "repurposed" anything here it comes...)  And I found several great tutorials on line for transforming a mens tie into a baby tie.  I don't know where the one is but you take the SMALL part of the tie to make the tie and then you cut off the rest and add elastic for his neck.  His mommy loved it but it got to small too quick.  She gave it back to me so I could fix it and I never did.  OPPS.  She mentioned to me how much she loved that tie.  Well guess what?  I found the left over of the tie and made him a new one with the big end.  Here is what I came up with.

Check out this tutorial for something similar to what I did HERE  I didn't use this tutorial because there were parts I wanted to do differently but this gives you a great idea on how to do this.  You can even buy matching ties for the whole family and then just fix the kids ties accordingly.  Nice!  

So here is all four of them

The nice thing about it is I have two ties for my photography prop box now.  Also, this got me thinking about bow ties again.  Last year I did a bow tie tutorial after finding one at the thrift store. You can find the tutorial HERE

I am getting the itch to make a bunch of bow ties now!  EEEEEEE

Since this re-purpose was kind of a lame one, I am planning on posting again later.  CROSSING my fingers any ways.  You never know how the kids are going to be for me later.  So come back later and check out what I get time to put up!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Re-purposing Week: Day 3 Table Cloth Skirt

Today I am excited about my project.  I bought this table cloth last week at the thrift store with my sister.

I knew exactly what I wanted to do with it the second I saw it.  I wanted to make a skirt.  If you look up table cloth to skirt tutorials ( like I did ) you will find lots of instructions on how to cut the middle out.  You fold it in half length wise a couple of times and then you cut it in a circle pattern.  It's not complicated if you do the math right.  I over compensated on my math and my circle was a lot wider then my hips.  No problem.  I was planning on adding an elastic waste.  Then I started thinking.  I found a tank top that I haven't worn in forever.

I decided to use it.  I pinned the shirt right sides together with the table cloth.

I then used a zig zag stitch because I figured the tank top was stretchy and that gave the material a little give.  THAT'S IT!

I even went outside and tried to get a good picture.  I should have taken them BEFORE lunch when my stomach didn't stick out so much!  haha

I went to the post office and wore this all around the house while cleaning and what not today and I LOVE it.  It was so comfortable and you don't have to worry about your shirt coming up and showing your tummy or underwear.  WOO HOO

So go find a table cloth and a tank top and make your own.


Re-purposing Week: Day 2 Making things longer

I have a two for one special for y'all today.  Mainly because I did the exact same thing to two different things.  I guess technically only one of them qualifies as re-purposing and the other would be considered alterations.  Whatever.  haha

I am tall.  I also have a loooooong torso.  It was always hard for me to find shirts that actually cover my tummy.  When I was a teenager, I just wore whatever and if my stomach showed when I lifted up my arms it was no big deal.  NOW, I can't do that.  Do you want to know my secret?  Usually I still wear my maternity belt.  You know those things that help you keep your pants up when you are pregnant and wear your regular pants with them unzipped.  They have them at Target.  Next time you make it to target go to the maternity section and see what I am talking about.  I use this as my belt because I HATE belts.  I also use it to make sure my tummy never shows.  It's fabulous.  Sometimes it would just be nice if a shirt or dress/skirt was slightly longer.  I got this shirt from that free rummage sale we had a church about 6 months ago

It's a way cute shirt but it was too short.  When a shirt is super flowy like this, it makes it even worse to have it be short.  I didn't like the way the maternity belt look with it either. I decided it was time to get rid of the shirt or fix it.  I looked through my fabric and found something that I liked and went to work.  I measured the front of the shirt and the back of the shirt.  If you want to do this make sure to measure both.  I didn't the first time and the front of the shirt is wider then the back.  Measure your extra fabric to match the front and back.  Figure out how much length you want to add.  I added 5 or 6 inches to mine.  Take the two sides of your extra fabric and sew them rights sides together so you have a huge circle.  Pin it to your shirt ( right sides together again ) and sew it on.  I then ironed it open and put a top stitch all the way around.  I love how it turned out.

Now my shirt is PLENTY long.  In fact, now it is really wide and I feel pregnant in it.  Too bad for me I won't be getting pregnant again because it would actually be a super cute maternity shirt.  NOW, I need to take in the sides a little but I am sure it will take me another 6 months to get around to doing that!  So that was more of an alteration and not a re-purposing.  Here is my "re-purpose"

I bought this dress for 4 dollars at the thrift store

 And check out the cute middle ( yikes look at how messy my room is in the back ground of the picture! haha  I had a pile of laundry on the floor ready to go in the washer.  heehee )
I really loved this dress.  For me it was slightly too short.  It went over my knees a tiny bit but the second I moved it would come up over them a little and show too much.  I took another knit skirt I had that was black and too big.  The way the skirt was made you couldn't just simply take it in on the sides to make it smaller so I decided to cut it up and use the fabric.  It was another thing I got for free at the rummage sale.  I did the SAME thing I did with the black shirt.  I wore this to church on Sunday and I was looking pretty styling.  ;)

If you have a dress like this and want to make it longer another option would have been to add the black strip of fabric to the middle under your chest instead of the bottom.  Because mine was so cute in the middle I didn't want to cut it there but it would have looked really cute in the middle as well.  Look in your closet.  Do you have something that you could make longer and then you might actually wear more?  Make a pile of stuff and go to town.  I am telling you it is the best thing ever to do!  Alright have fun and I'll see you back here again tomorrow.

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