Uncategorized

10 Skirt Refashion Tutorials for Skirting the Issue

July is such a great month for wearing skirts! They’re perfect for summer, easy to throw on after a day at the beach, and they can take you from the pool to date night with a quick accessory change. The lovely ladies at Simple Simon and Co. have an amazing series that they put together every July called Skirting the Issue. You can read all about it over on their site, but they spend the month gathering tutorials for skirts, pillowcases, and quilts. Then everyone who participates sews something to donate to kids in foster care! I love this idea so, SO much. This year I’ve collected 10 tutorials for refashioning skirts out of other materials, everything from shirts to dresses to pants! Most of these are super easy to sew and would be great for re-using materials that have gone unloved or even some of those XXL garments you find on the super clearance racks!

1.Dress to Skirt

This is one of my favorite upcycles that I did a long time ago! I took a thrifted dress that never fit on top and turned it into a skirt in just a few minutes.

2. T-Shirt to Skirt

This awesome tutorial from my girl Melissa at Sew Like My Mom is quick and can be for girls or women. The best part is that it’s so comfy because it doesn’t have an elastic waistband!

3. Jeans to Mini Skirt

Emily from Life Sew Savory turned a pair of jeans into this adorable mini skirt! It looks super easy, and I could imagine wearing this one at an outdoor summer concert!

4. Shirt to Baby Circle Skirt

How adorable is this little circle skirt?? My friend Dana at Sew Thrifty made this one from a t-shirt:  simple and comfy for little ones! You can use this same idea to make a circle skirt for yourself too.

5. Prom Dress to Skirt

I adore this super fun refashion from Fleece Fun! What a great way to use an old prom dress or even a bridesmaid dress that you normally wouldn’t get to wear again.

6. Shirt to Skirt

Here’s a different way to take a T-shirt and make it into a skirt from Make It and Love It. Re-using the existing hem makes it so fast!

7. Flannel Shirt to Skirt

How fun is this cozy upcycle from Randomly Happy Blog? Take a flannel shirt and turn it into a fall or winter skirt! Perfect for those of you in the Southern Hemisphere right now.

8. Sweats to Skirt

Here’s another comfy skirt from It’s Always Autumn. Take a pair of sweatpants and transform them into a skirt! She also has a tutorial for a kid’s version on her blog.

9. Sweater to Skirt

Since we’re talking cozy skirts, this refashion from Pearls and Scissors takes a sweater and turns it into a warm winter skirt. I’m imagining this with tights and tall boots – so cute, right?!

10. Vintage Sheet to Skirt

Here’s another one of mine that I loved – a favorite vintage sheet turned skirt! I added some doilies as pockets for a functional accent. :)

I love taking a garment that’s lost its luster and using it to create something brand new. It’s a great way to breathe new life into something that would otherwise be bound for a landfill! Search through thrift shops and clearance racks (or the back of your closets!) to find your fabric. With so many skirt tutorials to choose from, you should be set! Now get sewing – for yourself and also for Skirting the Issue! Make sure you pop over to Simple Simon and Co to get all the details on what to do with your skirt and to check out all the awesome ideas and inspiration. Love these ladies and their generous hearts!!

Happy sewing, friends!

Advertisements

When Motherhood Isn’t What You Expected 

Anytime you bring a new baby home, your life is going to change. Most of those changes are so, so good. And many are just as difficult. But babies grow and (eventually) sleep through the night, and what was hard yesterday isn’t so hard today.

So when we brought home baby boy five, I expected certain challenges. I knew there would be countless sleepless nights ahead of me. I knew there would be crying – from both baby and mama. I knew there could be some rocky days as his brothers transitioned to this new person in our home. I knew that I should expect the unexpected.

photo credit: Brooke Collier Photography

But this most recent season of motherhood has been more exhausting and more challenging than I was prepared for. In the nine plus years since I became a parent, I’ve been a proud breastfeeding mama. Not in an “I’m better than you if you don’t breastfeed” kind of way, but in an “I’m willing to work as hard as I can to make this work, because this is what I believe is best for my baby.” And it has been hard work.

So of course, I expected the same for our newest babe. After all, fifth babies come at least with the blessing of experience – every little thing isn’t new and confusing, as it was with my first.

photo credit: Brooke Collier Photography

In the beginning, it was easy. He nursed like a champ, and we had very few problems. We settled into a groove and everything was going well. Until it wasn’t.

At a well-check, we discovered he wasn’t gaining weight. Even though I thought he had been nursing so well, he wasn’t growing like he should have been.

This felt personal. I’m the one responsible for this little life. I’m his sole source of nourishment. I’m the reason he’s not growing.

It took awhile to find the cause of his lack of weight gain, and in the process, we began to supplement. I cried when my husband gave him his first bottle. Not because formula was going to ruin my baby, but because I felt like I had failed him. I wasn’t doing what I was supposed to do – what I was made to do.

Through my own persistence and refusing to simply believe that my milk wasn’t “enough” we discovered our little one had a significant lip and tongue tie that had been over looked for months. Once we began down the road of supplementing (which was necessary, even if it was heart wrenching), baby decided he didn’t want to nurse anymore. Who could blame him, really. He hadn’t been physically capable of getting all the milk he needed when nursing, so when we introduced a bottle, he didn’t have to work so hard to fill his little belly anymore.

So my life revolved around feedings – pumping, attempting to nurse only to be met with screams and tears – his and mine, and bottle feeding. I felt like all I did was feed and pump, feed and pump.

My free moments were few and far between. When the baby was sleeping, I was pumping and homeschooling and trying to keep up with the daily tasks of mothering a small army of children. I was spending every second of the day – and throughout the night – caring for a child. I put all other things on the back burner – sewing, exercising, self-care. It was a hard and difficult season.

But because this was my fifth baby and not my first, I knew that it was just that – a season. Sometimes I would pump in my sewing room and look at my stacks of fabric, and my mind would fill with ideas for what to sew next. I would spot the half finished projects sitting on my sewing table, and wonder how long it would be before I could get to them. And then I would remind myself that it wasn’t always like this – and one day, it would get better. I would dust off my sewing machine and we’d pick back up like the old friends we are. This season was hard, but it wasn’t going to last forever.

About a month ago, I chose to stop pumping. Instead of feeling guilty for not nursing a full year or more like I had with my other kiddos, I knew that it was the right choice for me. I needed to step out of that hard season and create a little more margin in my days. My milk supply had been dwindling, and I knew that my body and my soul needed some restoration.

I’ve since returned to my trusty sewing machine and finished projects that I had begun months ago. My brain made space to create something new. I still have days or weeks where my sewing machine sits untouched. The dishes pile up and must be washed. The baby learns to crawl, gets into everything he shouldn’t, and suddenly I’m trading sleepy snuggles for chasing him around the house. Summer comes and we spend hours at the park.

Motherhood always brings the unexpected: joys, tears, adventures, and challenges. But I always come back to sewing, even if it comes in 15 minute increments, because this is my self-care. When life throws something at you that you weren’t expecting, the small moments of taking care of yourself become even more important. I know that if I don’t take care of myself, there’s no way I can take care of these littles of mine. When the season changes, I’ll have a renewed appreciation for an uninterrupted hour spent with my sewing machine. Here in this season of sleepless nights and countless bottle feedings, though, I’m okay with slow sewing with a side of baby snuggles.

Thanks, Jodi, for inviting me to be a part of the Ease Into Motherhood series.

DIY After Sun Spray

It’s that time of year for fun in the sun! Going to the beach, the park, meeting friends for cookouts… I love it all! But with all that time in the sun, sometimes your skin can end up needing a little soothing at the end of the day. This After Sun Spray is just what you need to cool down your skin after a long day outside.

DIY After Sun Spray Recipe

This post contains affiliate links

Ingredients:

after sun spray ingredients 1. Drop in your 100% pure essential oils

2. Pump in your aloe gel

3. Fill the rest of your bottle with witch hazel

4. Shake to combine

5. Label your bottle with washi tape!

after sun spray

So easy! Now you’re all set to support healthy skin after a long day in the sun!
Want to see a video of how to make this spray? Check out the live video I did on my Facebook page!

DIY Valentine Mailbox

With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, your little ones probably have school parties and Valentines to exchange. This adorable Valentine mailbox that’s just what they need to collect their treats! Valentine Mailbox Tutorial

Supplies:

  • Glimmer Felt (this is a stiffer felt, which helps the mailbox stand up, but if you have regular felt, that will still work!) 
  • Embroidery Floss
  • Embroidery Needle
  • Wool Felt

1. Cut two pieces out of the Glimmer Felt — the rectangle is 5x9in and the other is 11.75×4.75in with curved corners. *This mailbox is perfect for a smaller class size, but you can easily adjust the size of this mailbox if you want to make it bigger.step 1

2. Place the curved piece glitter side down, then put the short end of the rectangle in the center of that curved piece.Using a blanket stitch, begin sewing the two pieces together.step 2

3. Sew all along the first side, then fold the curved end of the bottom piece up to meet the top.

step 3

4. If you have Wonder Clips, use them to hold the top piece down while you continue to sew around the back (use binder clips in a pinch!)

step 3 part 2

5. At this point, trim around your curve if it doesn’t seem to perfectly match the top of the mailbox. Then sew around the back until you reach the corner. Stop at the corner.

step 4

6. Cut out a mailbox flag.

step 5

7. Sew a heart out of wool felt to embellish the flag.

step 6

8. Attach the flag to the side of the mailbox.

step 7

9. Finish sewing the along the bottom of the mailbox.

step 8

10. Attach a small piece of embroidery floss and a button to close the mailbox.

step 9

You could also use the wool felt to embellish the mailbox – the front would be a great place for another heart!

step 9 part 2

Now you’re ready to stuff your mailbox full of fun Valentine treats!step 11

If you don’t have kiddos in school, this would make a great Valentine decoration around your house to leave little love notes for whoever lives in your house!

Make a Valentines Day Mailbox

Such a great way to make Valentine’s Day a little bit cuter!

Cutest Valentine Mailbox

If you’re looking for some DIY Valentine ideas, check these out: 

Free Train Valentine Printable


Easy Last Minute Valentines


Free Dinosaur Valentine Printables


Heart Pencil Toppers


A Valentine for everyone!

Make your own Valentine Mailbox

Happy sewing!

Embroidery Hoop Snowman for Crazy Christmas Event

Today I’m guest posting over at I Heart Naptime, and I’m sharing this adorable embroidery hoop snowman. This little guy is already adorning my wall, and you can make one too! Head on over to check out the tutorial!

embroidery-hoop-snowman

Buffalo Plaid Pillow for Bake Craft Sew 2016

Hi, friends! Today I’m guest posting over at Skip to my Lou, sharing this adorable and whimsical buffalo plaid sweater pillow as part of her Holiday series!

buffalo-plaid-sweater-pillow

Click over to Skip to my Lou to see the full tutorial!

Happy sewing :)

A Portrait of my Everyday Hero {and win a trip for two to NYC!}

Everybody has someone in their life who has impacted them in an incredible way. That could be a teacher, a friend, an employer, or a parent. The amazing Annie Leibovitz is traveling the world, sharing her New Portraits of women, exploring the changes in the roles of women today while bringing to life one of the greatest art exhibitions of the 21st century. She and USB have asked bloggers to share their own portraits of the women in their lives who are their everyday heroes. And there’s no one else I could possibly choose as my hero but my mom.

Jessica Collier submission

My mom is one of those people who will drop everything to help you. She lives over four hours away from me, but she has driven countless hours back and forth to help me with babies, unpacking, when my husband is out of town, and everything in between.

All moms are heroes, but my mom is simply amazing. She has raised six (super awesome ;) kids, spends countless hours caring for her grandchildren, co-runs a weekly meal for local homeless, is always putting her family first, and is easily one of my favorite people to spend time with. When someone will drop what they’re doing and drive to be present at the birth of your kids, then do all your dishes and watch all your other kids while you sleep, that’s a hero.

When I think of all the many hours my mom has spent caring for me, my kids, and the rest of our family, I get overwhelmed. She has spent her whole life giving. Loving. Sharing of her time and talents. I’m so blessed to know that she is always there for me when I need help at home or a shoulder to cry on. She taught me how to sew and gave me a love for creative life. She values family and taught all of us that family is important and comes first. I will never take for granted all that she has done for me and how she has shaped me into the woman I am today.

Who is your hero?

Submit your own story by posting a picture of your hero on Instagram with the hashtag #ShareYourHero. By sharing your hero, you are entering yourself to win a trip for two to New York City to the opening of the Annie Leibovitz WOMEN: New Portraits exhibition in November.

Find details about how to enter to win here.

Momiform MAKEover – elevating the handmade mom uniform

If you come to my house on any given day, most likely you’ll find me in jeans and a T-shirt, with a cardigan thrown over top in cold weather. I spend most of my days chasing after my four ever-moving boys, plus homeschooling, so I need to be comfy. Back in my teaching days, I used to dress up nearly everyday, so my wardrobe has taken a distinct turn. When Lauren at Baste + Gather invited me to be part of her Momiform MAKEover series, I wanted to maintain the jeans and t-shirt comfort, but elevate the look a little bit.Momiform MAKEover - updating the mom uniform I came across all three of these fabrics on the same visit to JoAnn Fabrics, and the outfit together in my head immediately. Making over the mom uniform The cardigan is self-drafted. I’ve made another version, though I never blogged it. It’s a little drapey and super comfortable. Gwen Top and Real Deal Jeans 5 I am absolutely in love with this floral! This cardi is going to be a wardrobe staple from now on! Gwen Top and Real Deal Jeans 6 Awhile back, I adopted a pair of pink jeans at a clothing swap, and I was super excited about them. But after wearing them once, I realized they were a little too big. So when I ran across this pink denim, I knew I wanted to recreate them. Gwen Top and Real Deal Jeans 10 Using the Real Deal Jeans pattern from Winter Wear Designs that I used here, I successfully made my second pair of jeans (holla!!). I modified them a bit from the pattern again, but I’m getting close to the fit I’d like. Real Deal Jeans I love love love this pink! Gwen top and Real Deal Jeans 2The fabric is pretty nice, though it doesn’t have quite the recovery that I’d like. When I made them, the fit was fantastic, but they stretched a little and didn’t keep their shape as much as I’d have hoped. All jeans will stretch a little as you wear them, but I may end up taking them in just a little bit to account for that. But I’m still so happy with how they turned out!  Gwen top and Real Deal jeansThe shirt is the top version of the Gwen, from the new Pattern Anthology bundle, which is on sale through 10/2. I absolutely love the fit, and the functional button placket is such a neat detail. Gwen Top and Real Deal Jeans 3 I made the elbow length sleeves, so that the top could easily transition between multiple seasons. The combo of the polka dots and the pink jeans makes me swoon a little bit. Mommy Wardrobe Makeover The button placket is a little wider than most, and I love the interest it brings to the top. My machine hates buttonholes, so I fought with it until giving in to manual buttonholes (there may or may not have been tears involved…) Even though the placket is functional, it slips over my head easily and wouldn’t need to be. But nursing mamas, this is a pattern for you! Even the dress could be made with the placket – a nursing friendly dress!!Gwen Top and Real Deal Jeans 11 Honestly, this outfit is one of my favorite things I’ve ever made. It’s comfy and relaxed, but I feel a little more put-together than usual. I could easily go straight from taking care of the kids to out with my man in this outfit, just by throwing on a pair of heels. Assuming, of course, that I don’t have some sort of food or bodily fluid wiped on me somewhere. ;) Momiform MAKEover - making over the mom wardrobe

 I’m glad for this push to elevate my mom uniform a little bit!! Ever since I committed to sewing more for myself, I’ve tripled the amount of handmade clothes in my closet, and I’ve stepped way out of my comfort zone. If you haven’t started sewing for yourself yet, now is your chance: Lauren has put together a phenomenal giveaway and discounts, and I’ve seen some of the amazing outfits that are part of this series for your sewing inspiration, and you need to check them out!Momiform MAKEover

REMEMBER: Scroll to the bottom of this post to enter the two separate Rafflecopters! 50+ winners will be selected! Get 10% off your fabric order from now through October 1 at Michael Levine/LowPriceFabric.com with code: Makeover10

Get 20% off your pattern order now through October 1 at UpCraft Club with code: MOMIFORM Are you MAKE-ing over your Momiform? Join the fun on Instagram with hashtag #momiformmakeover

 


 

Be sure to check out all the awesome series participants to get lots of momiform inspiration!

Reyna Lay Designs | Call Ajaire | Golden Rippy | Love Notions Sew Not Perfect | Scientific Seamstress | Rebel & Malice Creative Counselor | Mabey She Made It | If Only They Would Nap | Boy, Oh Boy, Oh Boy Crafts Shaffer Sisters | FABulous Home Sewn | Fa Sew La | Baste + Gather Lulu & Celeste | Swoodson Says | Phat Quarters | Hey June | Stitch Upon a Time Climbing the Willow | Everything Your Mama Made & More | Näh-Connection | 110 Creations A Jennuine Life | Straight Stitch Designs | Sew Straight & Gather | KZJO’STUDIO Wild & Wanderful | Mae & K | Handmade Frenzy | HattieLu Handmade

 


Sponsors

 

momiform major sponsors

Special thanks to these major sponsors who generously donated the following items for the giveaway:

(There will a different winner for each line item so we can spread the love around!)

Janome – One Skyline S5 Sewing Machine* Indiesew – Four $50 gift certificates (four separate winners) Michael Levine / Low Price Fabric – Four $25 gift certificates (four separate winners) and 10% discount for readers through October 1 – code: Makeover10 UpCraft Club – Two $25 gift certificates (two separate winners) and 20% discount on patterns through October 1 – code: MOMIFORM

And the following pattern designers who graciously provided patterns for the series participants and/or contributed the following items for the giveaway:

Grainline Studio – Two patterns of your choice True Bias – Hudson Pants & Southport Dress patterns Colette -Two patterns of your choice Closet Case Files -Two patterns of your choice Sew Much Ado -Two patterns of your choice Sew Straight & Gather – Three patterns of your choice Golden Rippy – Two patterns of your choice 110 Creations: A Sewist’s Notebook Patterns for Pirates – Two patterns of your choice Itch to Stitch – Two patterns of your choice Mouse House Creations – Two patterns of your choice Hey June Handmade -Two patterns of your choice Peekaboo Pattern Shop – Three patterns of your choice Go-to Patterns – One women’s pattern of your choice GreenStyleCreations -Two patterns of your choice Puperita – One pattern of your choice Sofilantjes – Two patterns of your choice Charlotte Kan – One pattern of your choice So Sew Easy – Two patterns or one bundle of your choice OUSM Designs – Women’s Thumbs-Up Tee pattern E-Beth Designs – Two patterns of your choice Muffin Head Patterns – Any pattern of your choice up to $10 GrayDay Patterns – Sandpoint Top or Athena Top pattern (your choice) Scientific Seamstress – One pattern of your choice Stitch Upon a Time – $20 gift card 5 out of 4 – Two patterns of your choice Frianki Patterns – Two patterns of your choice KZ Jo Studio – Two patterns of your choice Straight Stitch Designs – Full collection of patterns Sewing Patterns by Aivilo Charlotte – Two patterns of your choice Striped Swallow Designs – Two patterns of your choice Rose and Lee Designs – Two patterns of your choice Sewing Geek Patterns – One pattern of your choice Filles a Maman – One pattern of your choice Bella Sunshine Designs – One pattern of your choice Liola Designs – One pattern of your choice Cali Faye Collection – One pattern of your choice Tinman Patterns – Orbit Skirt pattern Felicity Sewing Patterns – Two patterns of your choice Winter Wear Designs – Two patterns of your choice Ellie Inspired – Three patterns of your choice Love Notions – One pattern of your choice a Sparkly Baby – Two patterns of your choice Terra’s Treasures Designs – Two patterns of your choice

*Janome giveaway winner must be located in U.S.A. and is therefore on a separate Rafflecopter below. Machine must be picked up at a local dealer; it cannot be shipped.

Click here to enter the Rafflecopter giveaway

This second Rafflecopter includes all the other sponsor items since they can be awarded internationally! You must enter both Rafflecopters in order to be entered to win both the sewing machine and the rest of the giveaway items. All patterns awarded will be in PDF format. Enjoy!

//widget-prime.rafflecopter.com/launch.jsClick here to enter the Rafflecopter giveaway//widget-prime.rafflecopter.com/launch.js

Wide Neck Tee for Remix the Stitch

My sweet friend Kimberly at Straight Stitch Designs is celebrating the one year anniversary of her pattern shop! She has accomplished so much in the last year. I’ve been such a fan of her patterns – I’ve sewn the Capitol Hill, the Ballard and the Greenwood, and I’ve loved every.single.one. So when Kimberly invited me to be a part of her Remix the Stitch tour – taking one of her patterns and mixing it up – I knew I had to sew along!

Wide Neck Tee from If Only They Would Nap

*this post contain affiliate links*

I actually started out with the Ravenna, but I made a cutting error that ended up… well, let’s just say it wasn’t working out in my favor. I knew I had to set it aside, and since I had three other Straight Stitch Designs patterns printed and ready to cut, I came up with a brilliant idea: combine the Greenwood with the Capitol Hill to make a wide neck tee!

DSC_0931

It’s a super simple hack: I used the front and back of the Greenwood – the low back version, so the front and back are the same. Then I used the sleeve from the Capitol Hill. I shortened the Greenwood about 1/2inch from the shoulder to match up with the sleeve. I used a one inch binding for the neckline. I also graded the body of the shirt out just a little bit, as I wanted a slightly looser fit. When I make another one, I’ll also add another inch to the sleeve, since the shoulder is higher than the Capitol Hill, and I forgot to factor that in.

wide neck tee 5

This shirt is ridiculously comfortable. I looove the wide neck. Plus, I put it together from cut to sew (to photograph!) in less than two hours. So basically it’s faster to make a new shirt than to do a load of laundry. Clearly laundry is overrated.

wide neck tee 3One of the great things about owning multiple patterns from a designer is that often times, you can mix and match some of the pieces like the sleeves. I love Kimberly’s style, and all of the Straight Stitch Designs patterns have great features, fit well, and come together so nicely. They’re some of my go-to patterns for sure!

wide neck tee 4

I didn’t get a good picture of it, but the back of the neck mirrors the front. It’s unlike any other t-shirt I own, so it’s a fun way to mix up my everyday t-shirt and jeans wardrobe! I just adore this shirt! It’s starting to feel like fall, so this will be getting a lot of wear.

Wide Neck Tee 2

Kimberly’s having an amazing sale and giveaway in honor of her anniversary. Her PDF and paper patterns are 50% off and her stitch kits are 40% off through 9/20. I really can’t recommend her patterns enough!

giveawaygraphic

Click here to enter the giveaway

Make sure you check out all the other stitchers on the #remixthestitch tour!

Happy sewing!

Tuesday, September 8th: Meg Cookin’ and Craftin’ | Jennifer Ginger Peach Studio
Wednesday, September 9th: Ajaire Call Ajaire | Heidi Handmade Frenzy | Stacey Boy, Oh Boy, Oh Boy Crafts
Thursday, September 10th: Melissa Rebel & Malice | Annika Näh-Connection | Abby Sew Much Ado
Friday, September 11th: Katie It’s Hard to Hear Up Here | Jane Buzzmills | Lisa Mabey She Made It
Saturday, September 12th: Elena Randomly Happy | Allie Indiesew | Jess If Only They Would Nap
Monday, September 14th: Jaime Made By Jaime | Lauren BASTE + GATHER | Sara Made by Sara
Tuesday, September 15th: Audrey Skirt Fixationy | Teri Fa Sew La | Hayley Welcome to the Mouse House
Wednesday, September 16th: Emi Just Add Fabric | Rachael Imagine Gnats | Teresa Dandelion Drift
Thursday, September 17th: Kaysie | KZJO’STUDIO Rita Conversas de Hermanas | Stephanie Swoodson Says
Friday, September 18th: Andreia In a Manner of Sewing | Nienke Pienkel | Abbey Sew Charleston

DIY Lunch Bags and free printable!

Today I’m over at Craftaholics Anonymous sharing an easy DIY that will go perfectly with the lunch sacks I shared earlier this week. Lunch bags for sandwiches and snacks, plus a free printable for notes to tuck into your kiddos’ lunches! Head on over and check them out :)

DIY-Lunch-Bags-and-free-lunchbox-notes-printable

 

And if you haven’t already, make sure you enter the For the Love giveaway!