Diamonds and Ruffles Scout Tee + instructions

The Fall semester is finally over! That means time to sew and watch TV! To celebrate the end of finals, I made this lovely scout tee Friday. I wore to out on Saturday to see The Hobbit and already know I’ll be wearing it a lot more. Skip to the bottom of the post for instructions.

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Fabric is from Grandma’s stash. It’s definitely cotton, but has a really cool soft/slick texture to it as well. It’s a really crisp white with subtle little diamonds that catch the light.

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What I really love about this shirt is that it’s really loose and comfy, but can be worn casually or dressed up. I need to hand sew some tiny belt loops on the waistline so the skinny belt will stay up without having to wear it too tight.

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This is a really easy modification to do, although making the ruffles even takes foreverrr. I have a love hate relationship with ruffles. Here are the steps I took:

1. Slash the pattern at the “shorten/lengthen” line and then cut out fabric as usual (just leave off the bottom part you cut off).

2. Sew the shoulders, bias neckline, sides, and sleeves as usual. I used 1/4″ double fold bias tape and used a slipstitch to hand sew it to the inside of the garment.

3. Cut out two long rectangles for the ruffle. The length of my two rectangles were about 40″ each (from selvage to selvage for each rectangle.” Make them smaller or larger depending on your shirt size and how full you want the ruffle. The height of the rectangle should be how much length you want to add to the shirt + seam allowance (I did 1/2″ at the top and 3/4″ for the folded hem). Make the rectangles really long, and you have a tunic or dress

4. Sew two lines of basting along the top of each rectangle 1/4″ and 3/4″ away from the edge. You’ll be sewing between these lines in a minute. Or use whatever method of gathering you want. Basting just means use the longest straight stitch on your machine.

5. Sew the rectangles right sides together so you have a tube and press seams open.

6. Gather the rectangles by pulling both thread tails and evenly redistributing the ruffles. This may take a while. Keep doing this until the rectangle is the same length as the edge of the shirt.

7. Match side seams and pin the gathered rectangles to the shirt edge, right sides together.Use as many pins as necessary. Keep fussing with those ruffles and get them evenly distributed! No one likes ripping out stitches later.

8. Using a straight stitch, sew the top and bottom together with 1/2″ seam allowance.

9. Pull out the basting. Finish the seam with a zig zag stitch, serger, or your preferred method. You could also sew a skinny piece of elastic onto the seam at this point if you want the shirt to be fitted at the waist.

10. Roll the bottom edge under twice, press, and hem.

TA-DA!

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DIY: Embroider canvas shoe

I’ve had these slip-on shoes for a few years now, and decided they needed an upgrade…to diamond slippers!

This is a really easy DIY. For a hand-drawn look, I backstitched the diamonds without tracing the shape in watercolor pencil beforehand. I used all six strands of my floss.
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For the insteps, I did a little cross hatching. The key to having neat lines is to draw evenly spaced dots across the top and bottom using watercolor pencil.Side view of embroidered diamond shoes

This idea works best with simple shapes. Other than diamonds, I considered using cats, cupcakes, and cool geometric designs kinda like this but not nearly as complicated looking.

A beginner’s guide to making your own retro style swimsuit bottoms

How to make your own swimsuit bottoms. For beginners

I am super excited to be going to Florida over spring break with my sister in a few weeks! But that means wearing the dreaded swimsuit! D: I’ve always hated swimsuit shopping, especially since I don’t wear bikinis. Luckily, making your own swimsuit bottoms isn’t nearly as difficult as it sounds.

You’ll need–

  • Enough spandex to cover your bum (from now on I will call this the main material)
  • The same amount of lining
  • Traced pattern from existing clothing (swimsuit, underwear, bodysuit, etc)

Step 1: Trace your pattern

Fold the lining fabric in half, lay the pattern on top, and use pins to secure it (unless you’re reckless, like me :P). If you included seam allowances in your tracing, you will cut directly around pattern. If you did NOT include seam allowances, leave extra space when you cut (bigger seam allowances mean more room for mistakes/hemming later on). Do the same thing with the main material, but leave about 3 extra inches at the top, which will be your waistband.

**Make sure your fabric is placed so that it is stretchiest from left to right– your belly deserves to be comfy!

step 1, trace pattern directions

Step 2: Cut

After you cut around your pattern, you will have 4 pieces: two of lining and two of main material.
Step 2, cut

Step 3: Sew first crotch seam

Hold the right sides together at the crotch and sew straight across. I used a stretchy straight stitch with a tension of about 6ish. Assume this for all seams unless stated otherwise.

step 3, sew first crotch seam directions

Thread recommendation

Right side up, it should look like this:
step 4, outside view

Step 4: Sew second crotch seam (lining)

Do the same thing with the lining. I tried to be fancy and do a french seam, but couldn’t get it to look right and ended up with a regular old seam. And if you’re smarter than me, you’ll lay the material down so that the seams are on the inside, facing each other.
step 4, sew lining crotch seam

step 5: Sew the lining and main material together

Line up your pieces so that they match. You can’t really tell in this picture, but I was sloppy when I cut my pieces in the beginning. So if your pieces are a little bit off, don’t worry! It’ll probably work out in the end.

For now, you can leave the leg opening unstitched; we’ll get to those later.
step 5, sew lining and outside together copy

step 6: Fold and pin waistband

With the wrong side facing up, fold the main material over twice so that its raw edge will be lined up with the raw edge of the lining. Pin it.

step 6, fold and pin waistband

step 7: Hem and topstitch the waistband

Still using the stretchy straight stitch, sew across the waistband at the top and bottom. Remember to always backstitch at the beginning and end of seams to make them strong, because weak seams are the LAST thing you need on the beach

step 7, hem and topstitch the waistband

step 8: Sew sides together

Turn the bottoms inside out and sew the sides together. You can use a non-stretchy straight stitch on this part since this seam won’t have to stretch sideways.

I did my steps out of order, so the picture is messed up; yours should have the waistband completed already.

step 8, sew the sides

step 9: Fold and pin the leg openings

Still turned wrong side out, carefully make your way along the edge of the leg openings, folding and pinning as you go. Small seam allowances like mine are fine, but it would have been a little easier if they were a bit wider.

**You might want to practice sewing a curved hem on a piece of scrap fabric first. Working with stretch fabrics can make curved hems even more annoying than usual, but you can do it!
step 9, fold and pin the leg openings

step 10: Hem and topstitch the leg openings

step 10, sew and topstitch the leg openings

Here’s what it should look like when you’re done!

The final product

Crochet Owl Pillow

I just love finishing a big project! This design is based off of a sample project that was hanging in the Michaels store that my boyfriend really liked. I took the basic idea and made it larger.

crochet owl pillow

The pillow is 20″ in diameter and fairly thick, especially since this photo was taken immediately after I finished stuffing it. Before stuffing it, I decided to have a little fun with it and wear it as a mask.

crochet owl pillow as mask

I actually just finished this book today and it’s AWESOME! Definitely recommend it for introverts and extroverts alike.

crochet owl mask susan cain quiet the power of introverts in a world that can't stop talking

Isn’t my boyfriend cute?

crochet owl pillow as mask

Basic Instructions:

  • Single crochet two large circles. They need to be concave (to what degree depend on how fat you want the pillow to be).
  • BEFORE you sew the circles together, crochet the eyes and beak (basic circle and triangle shapes) and attach them using a yarn needle and yarn.
  • Using the yarn and yarn needle, turn the circles inside out and sew them together and stop a few inches before completing the circle.
  • Stuff the pillow with whatever stuffing you like. I used polyfill (a 50 oz bag was about $9 at Walmart).
  • Continue sewing around the edge until the gap is closed. Weave in any yarn tails.

I didn’t put any ears on mine, but might add one some feet later. For now I’m getting ready to go home for Christmas! Here are some stocking stuffers I got for my family 🙂

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