Thursday, June 14, 2018

Stripes "Gone Wild" T-shirt with Matching Shorts

This shirt features stripes of all kinds.
Squiggly stripes and a standard black and white stripe, a stripe formed when I placed a 1 1/2 inch wide folded strip of fabric in the diagonal seam between the main panel and the side panel, and stripes created with topstitching details. 

Can you see the stripes created with the red topstitching thread and "the hemstitch" pattern on my sewing machine?
I decided to create a band of fabric to edge the hood. The stripe will "frame" the face of the wearer and create a lot of visual interest.
This is how I did that:

First, I cut out two sets of hoods in the solid red fabric.
 I measured an equal distance from the edge of the pattern down the front edge of the hood. Cut away that band of the hood ( the amount I decided on includes the seam allowance).

 Cut 2 hood bands out of a contrasting color or pattern. Since I needed the stripes of squiggles to match, and I was using scraps of that fabric to cut out this band,
 I first cut only one the the bands.

 Then I placed the first band right sides together on the fabric and exactly matched the stripes.  Now I knew that the stripes would match when I cut out the second band. 

 After cutting it out,I immediately sewed those two pieces together at the top of the hood seam allowance.

Since I didn't have to worry about ruining my only pattern because I could just print out another hood from the PDF. I cut that 3/8 inch seam allowance off of the hood stripe band, then I used the altered hood band pattern piece to cut off the red fabric that I would no longer need on one set of the red hoods. I laid the band next to the "now smaller hood," and marked the two edges that I would be sewing together later.  But first I sewed the seam along the hood, using two lines of stretch stitches sewn closely together.  I cut off the excess seam allowance to reduce bulk, press. 

Sew the band onto one hood. This becomes the outside hood. Sew the seam on the solid red hood, and this will become the lining to the hood.  

Place the hoods right sides together, pin, and then sew along the edge that frames the face. DO NOT sew the bottom edge.  I clipped the curved edges, turned the garment right side out, and pressed all seams.  
Before attaching the hood to the shirt, I did some decorative topstitching. The hood edges overlap at the neck seam, so I did not plan to insert a grommet for a string. You may want that design element in your garment.

 Whether the hoods is worn up or down,
 it still adds a wonderful design element.

 I made some matching red knit shorts to go with the outfit.

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Baby Cheetah T-Shirt

My granddaughter loves cheetahs!
She reads about them, has stuffed animal cheetahs, and will watch any animal TV show about them.  Want to know a fact about a cheetah?.... The cheetah is the world's fastest land animal. They can run 70 mph (or 110 kph), which is as fast as cars drive on the highway. The cheetah can reach its top speed in just 3 seconds! She can sprout those facts!
So, when I saw a cheetah fabric panel to purchase a few months ago, I just had to buy it.
Thank goodness for the latest Project Run and Play Challenge to use fabric from your stash and create a new garment. 

She loves it, and I love... that she loves it

Friday, June 8, 2018


Wild Animal Acts = Circus
Image result for cheetah circus 
So, when I started planning my outfit for the Project Run and Play Circus Challenge, I wanted some wild cats!!!

BUT...I also had to make sure my outfit would please a very particular pre-teen.  No cutesy animals prints for her.

So I would like to introduce...

Pre-Teen Cheetah


Pattern on Pattern
2 Different Size Prints in Black and White

Hombre Yellow to Orange

Black and White With a Spot of Orange

Hoodie Outside and Inside

Stripe Runs in 2 Directions

 It's All in the Details
At the bottom of the shirt front, I added a bit of whimsy with this fake drawstring complete with metal grommets.
 A well executed drawstring can look effortless, cool, and casual.

How I Created That Detail
At the bottom of the shirt, I attached a 1 3/4 inch band of striped fabric that had been serged on one side. I used a 1/2 inch seam.
You can see the 4 grommets that had been inserted into the bottom of the shirt previously.  I ran my black and white twill tape through the grommets to create an "X" and then zig-zagged the tape into the 1/2 inch seam allowance. Then, I cut off the excess twill tape.

 Lastly, I folded under the edging to the backside of the shirt and sewed it down by stitching in the ditch. This created a finished 5/8 inch band all around the bottom of the shirt. This band also encased the ends of the twill tape.

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Rollercoaster Pattern Using a Cotton/Spandex Knit

I love sewing with cotton and spandex knit fabric. 
My granddaughter loves the feel of the fabric. 
It's so nice to find a fabric she enjoys with her skin sensitivity.


Sunday, April 15, 2018

Animals, Applique, and the German pattern "Tilt"

 I just made this cute shirt last night with a German pattern called "Tilt."  I stayed up until 3:00 am sewing since I was having so much fun!
I like how the pattern lets you combine fabric patterns so easily.
Grommets are getting easier and easier to apply. Thank Goodness!
And now for the applique that took way to long to do.
 At about 2:00 am, I began to wish that animals only had
 ONE leg each, instead of four. 
This water buffalo has no legs...hee hee.

Monday, April 9, 2018

Using the Fancy Stitches on Your Machine

You know how much I love to recycle!
Well, I had this flowered fabric and I wanted to make some shorts to go with the top that I was planning.

This is also a perfect time to use some of those fancy stitches on my sewing machine that I never use.

First, I used fabric tailor chalk and created a grid on one side of the shorts. 
Next, I selected an embroidery pattern that a pre-teen would like....XXXXX.
This particular pattern sews over the X's twice so it is nice and bold. I could have used 2 red threads at a time too. 

Yeap, I sewed through the pocket too.
Now, I matched up the grid on the other side of the shorts. 
Add more XXXXX.
Keep going.... it's really fun.
By the way, I only put the XXXX on the front of the shorts.
I don't have a fancy sewing machine that makes embroidery patches, so I used part of my sewing stash... these cute flowers to match the flowers in the fabric I found for my top. All I did was carefully iron them on.
If you do have an embroidery machine, this would be a great time to use your machine again and embroider some flowers directly onto the jeans. 
So I hope you have enjoyed my little tutorial, and plan to have some fun yourself creating with those machine stitches that you never use!


Monday, April 2, 2018

A 'Happily Ever After' Recycled Outfit

I really enjoying harvesting the fabric out of used clothing and creating something entirely new.  First, it engages my brain. You need to mentally deconstruct the garment and devise a plan to reuse the parts.  So let's have some fun!

Once upon a time this dress belonged to a 29 year old woman.  She loved it, but alas her body changed and she passed it on to me. "Create something new for your 10 year old granddaughter," she said.
As I looked closer, I saw possibilities!

First, I began to deconstruct the dress.
What if I added a bit of new cotton and lycra knit fabric for the lower front and back of the top? I could use the recycled ruffled black and white print for the upper front and back...then all I would need to do is fill  in that scoop with the new fabric.

 After checking, I realized that there would be enough of this black and white ruffled fabric length to keep the curved seam on the front.

Adding this fabric at the top of the back will fill in that scoop. Now, I have a new back that will eventually support the neck edge of my hoodie that I will be adding.  

 When I cut out the pocket, there was not enough fabric to place it on the fold, so I'll just add a seam down the center.  I wish I had a coverstitch machine to do some decorative stitching. But I have a plan to use one of the decorative stitches on my machine to simulate a coverstitch. 
I will use some vibrant red thread to highlight the seams and no one will ever suspect that it should have been one large pocket instead of two. Stitching in the ditch down the middle of the seam will instantly make 2 pockets.

 Now on to the hood. I'll use more of my black dress fabric for the hood and the hood lining. The bright print will draw the eye to her face, and the red topstitiching will repeat the decorative element on the hood and the pocket together.

Use a bit of turquoise fabric, from the dress band, for the grommet area, and I'll even make the ties from more of the black skirt fabric.

Reuse the knit bias tape by basting it in place first. Then topstitch it on with the machine.
Lastly, add the bottom band on the shirt and 
we    are   done! 

My granddaughter loves it and this story ends with ... her wearing the top "happily ever after."  Oh gosh, I forgot to mention the matching knit pants that I made out of a recycled pair of stretch knit pants of mine. It was pure magic!!!!
Old lady pants to hip-hop-hot body hugging pants
 perfect for a 5th grader.


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