Monday 25 July 2011

Girl's Summer Dress Mini Tutorial

This is one of my favourite upcycling projects. I needed some orange clothes for my youngest daughter. At nursery they were having colour themed weeks where they asked the children to come in dressed in clothes matching the colour of that week. I managed to have some clothes for all colours except 'orange'! I really didn’t have anything in the house which was orange. My girls like pink, and orange doesn’t really go with pink.

I went out to the shops to try to find something girly and orange. I didn’t find any clothes in the general clothes shops, so I decided to look in the charity (thrift) shops. I still couldn’t find any girls clothes, but I did find a small ladies strapless top in a lovely bright orange colour, and this was extremely cheap. I purchased it as a backup option, still hoping to find something else before orange week.

As I did not found any alternative, I then started on re-designing the top into a little girl’s summer dress. It wasn’t that difficult and only took less than 2 hours of often interrupted work. The only things extra I needed were: some elastic and thread. Below is a quick tutorial of how I did this.
Step 1: I measured my daughter's chest, then took in the side hem of the top accordingly, to make it slimmer. (I kept the scraps to make the bracelet).

Step 2: I cut of part of the long bottom frill. (I just cut this by freehand to make it unique.)

Step 3: Using half of the cut of bottom frill I then made two long straps.

Step 4: I added elastic into the long straps, to make them look ruffled and sewed them to the top of the top (now making it a dress!).

Step 5: I added some belt hoops with some of the spare material. (I sewed these into the side hems, by unpicking a small gap, placing them inside, and then sewing over the gap and the belt hoops)

Step 6: With the remaining half of the frill, I managed to make a belt for the dress.

Step 7: With part of the top frill (which I had removed to make the dress slimmer) I made a stretchy arm bracelet.

The Photo above is a close up of my daughter modelling the completed dress and the bracelet. She loves posing for the camera, as you can probably see. To keep in with the theme of orange, I also managed to crochet an orange headband. My daughters’ have boxes full of headbands, but again none of them were orange. This was the first crochet headband I have ever made, so I kept it to a very simple quick pattern, nothing fancy. I also made an orange crochet flower hair bobble/band.

I hope the mini tutorial makes it clear on how simple it was to accomplish this. If I wasn't being distracted by my children I could probably have made this in less than 1 hour!

This is a duplicate post, the first time I posted this I only had a handful of followers and didn't join in with any link parties. I thought that now we are in the summer this would be quite a good summery post! This post is linked up with the following:
TipMeTuesdayButton Katie's Nesting Spot      homework   Beneath the Rowan TreePassionately Artistic Confessions Of A Stay At Home MommyStrictly Homemade TuesdayRhinestone Beagle

Thursday 21 July 2011

Pinterest Review

I have joined ‘Pinterest’ this is a site where you can store photos that you see on the internet and ‘pin’ them to a virtual board. Many bloggers, especially craft bloggers are now using this application. I think it is a great idea and I wish I had joined it earlier.

If you are a member of Pinterest you can follow other members and look at their boards. If you see any interesting photos you just ‘repin’ them onto one of your boards so you have your own copy. If someone else sees your photo they can also ‘repin’ it and put it onto their boards. You can search using keywords for specific topics to look for ideas on other people’s boards.

I have set up some boards which show photos of my crafts from my blog and also boards with photos of crafts/ideas I have seen whilst browsing the internet. Once you become a member you need to save a link to your favourites list, then when you see a photo on the internet you click on that link and it automatically pins the photo to your board, really easy! Pinterest always log the page address where you found the photo and gives credit to it.

So many times in the past I have seen a great photo of something that at a later date I have wanted to blog about but couldn’t remember the name of the website I originally saw it on! Now with Pinterest I can immediately save the inspiring photo to my board and it logs the address so I can now give credit to the correct person!

Here are a couple of photos of some great craft projects that I have seen on other people's boards which I have now repinned to my boards:

The photo above is from the following website:

Now when I am looking for ideas for projects, I go to Pinterest first to see what photos are out there! If you join or you are already a member you can visit my boards by clicking on the follow me pinterest link on the top of my blog page. I have tried my best to write this blog post as briefly informative as I can, obviously if you visit their website you can get much more detailed information. Here is the Pinterest link: 

Monday 18 July 2011

Dog Bed Mini Tutorial

The photo above shows the dog bed I made for my mother. She has 3 chihuahuas who like to sleep next to her, so she decided that instead of them sleeping in her bed they should have a nice bed for themselves.

We looked online and in the stores for some ideas and thought that it would be cheaper to actually make one!  She had two old foam cot mattresses in storage which were of no use to her anymore, so we decided to use them for this project.  Unfortunately I didn't take any photos when I made this, as I didn't have my blog then. I will try to explain as best as I can how I made this.

Items Required:
2 pieces of foam (cot mattresses)
Fabric for covering the foam pieces
Small Cot Quilt (or other wadding)
Blanket/s (I used paw print design)

Step 1 - Sew a fitted cover to completely cover the base mattress, make it so that it can be removed to wash.
Step 2 - Cut the other piece of foam (2nd mattress) into 3 smaller parts. I used an electric bread knife for this job. One piece should be the same length as the small side of the base and twice the height of the base. The other two parts go down the side of the mattress and can be whichever length you wish. See photo below showing the 3 separate parts of the foam.

Step 3: I also made covers for the 3 pieces of cut foam, again making sure that they can be removed for cleaning.
Step 4: I then sewed some velcro to the fabric so that the 3 pieces of foam can be attached together and also attached to the base mattress.  This meant 5 pieces of velcro, 2 pieces to attach the small parts together and 3 pieces to attach the small parts to the base. The photo below shows where I added the velcro.

Step 5: To make the quilt, I sewed together 2 small blankets that my mother had which had a nice paw print design. I left an opening so that I could put in the small cot duvet that she had. You could just leave it without the duvet inside.

The dogs love their new bed, and it is just the right size so that it fits snugly under my mothers bed. On an evening she just has to pull it out from under her bed and then push it back under when she wakes up in the morning. I think you will agree that my mother's dogs are quite spoilt! This project didn't cost anything as I already had all the items needed for this project.

Here is a photograph of her 3 little dogs in case you are interested, they are long haired chihuahuas. The one on the left is the daughter of the other two. The male is the one on the right of the photograph.

I am sharing/linking this post with the following:
TipMeTuesdayButton Katie's Nesting Spot      homework   Beneath the Rowan TreePassionately Artistic Confessions Of A Stay At Home MommyStrictly Homemade TuesdayRhinestone Beagle