Friday, October 31, 2014

Happy Halloween!! Homemade Costume Fun!

My kids picked some pretty obscure costumes this year.  I don't usually make their costumes, but this year I didn't have much of a choice.  I did my best to not purchase anything to make them.  I used what fabric I had to make Aubrey's.  For Bayne, I only had to buy the fleece to make his cloak, which I luckily found for 50% off on the remnant rack at Joanns.

My daughter wanted to be Goku from Dragon ball.

I had a bunch of this shimmery orange fabric and some blue polyester my MIL recently sent me, which would work perfectly.  I just sorta winged it and here is what I came up with:

For the hair, I bought a headband off the target $1 rack, colored it black with a sharpie, and attached black fleece to the bottom because she is very sensitive about things on her head.  Then I cut out and glued on some black poster board in the shape of his crazy hair.  It was the best I could come up with, but I think it works enough for one day.

Here is my little Goku in full character:

Here she is at the Halloween Parade at school today.  Clearly having a blast!

I love my little party animal!!

My son went even more obscure, but I give him props for creativity.  He wanted to be Gaius, a character from his favorite video game, Fire Emblem Awakening.  Gaius is a candy thief, which I thought was very fitting for Halloween.  I really worked hard on his costume.  He is super stoked on how it came out.  Here is the picture of Gaius I used to work off of:

I started with a pair of Aubrey's old, torn, stained, too small leggings.  

I hacked them up to shape them into his arm bands.  I just cut a hole for the thumb.  I ended up sewing elastic into the top of the arm bands, so they would stay up because they were falling down a bit.

For his tank top I used two of the three shirts shown here:

I cut the sleeves off of the black shirt.  Then cut off the back of the grey and laid it over the top of the black shirt.

I sewed around it and then trimmed off the excess grey.

The back of the black shirt had some writing, which I covered with a strip of grey from the other shirt.

Then I made him the little vest, harness, candy holder thing out of some duck fabric and fake leather I had.  I used black binding to finish the armholes, black webbing to create the belt straps he has on the vest to hold the candy, and D-rings to fasten them into place.

Then I made him a cloak out of the black fleece I bought.  
Here is a little peek at the progress:

He needed some candy accessories, so I dug through my scraps and made him this lollipop.  I braided strips of red, orange, and yellow fabric and sewed them together.  I hot glued a chopstick to the back along with a strip of fabric to cover and help hold it into place.

I used felt to create the bear lollipop, plus the other half of the chopstick.

I found this striped fabric in my scraps, which I figured would work for the smarties he carries.  I sewed it and stuffed it with fiberfill.  I then cut off the bottom of a ziplock bag, wrapped it up and tied it with some hair bands.

And I also made him a headband with a strip of the fleece I had for the cloak.  
Here he is all finished:

He went by too fast during the parade, but I caught up with him and his buddy after.  He LOVES this costume!  He keeps telling me he is going to brag to all his friends about how I made it for him. 

I have received several hugs, kisses, and thank you's from the kids for these creations.  I had fun testing my pattern making abilities making these.  I am so happy they came out as well as they did.  I am looking forward to taking these kids out on the town tonight! 

I'm planning on dressing up tonight, too.  I always do, but I've been a little boring the last few years.  I've been a generic witch.  It's time to kick it up a notch.  I don't know if anyone will know who I am, but that's ok.  I'm going to be Tina from Bob's Burgers:

Unfortunately, I don't have a picture of me in it just yet.  This morning I did dress up for the kids Halloween Parade.  I wasn't brave enough to go as Tina, but I always like to do something.  I was one of three parents (in the ENTIRE school) who wore a costume, so I think it was the right decision.  I wore my devil horns and my Tina wig.  No one recognized me, it was so funny!  I kept freaking people out :).  I took Sippi, for a walk with her angel wings this morning, too.

She had her eyes on a squirrel … maybe she should have been the devil … lol.

I love Halloween!!!  It's fun to get a chance to be silly, dress up, and have fun.  I'll always be a kid at heart!

Happy Halloween!!!!!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Cleaning (Covering) Up My Sewing Space

We live in a very tiny apartment.  There isn't much space for anything and I definitely don't have a sewing room.  My closet (there is only 1 teeny tiny one for 3 of us to share) has basically become a fabric storage area and my sewing area has found it's home under the window in the kitchen.  It isn't ideal, but we make it work.  Aside from the fabric, I've managed to put most of my sewing supplies, books, and machines in this area.  The industrial sewing machine takes up a lot of room.  I hide random things under there (emergency water, paperwork, magazines, and a change jar).  I use the shelf next to it to hold office supplies, books, cutting tools, etc.  In the plastic bin I have the children's art supplies.  The only problem is it is such an eye sore.  I am a very clean person.  I like a clean house, but I am not the most organized.  I hate being reminded of this every time I walk into the kitchen.  I decided it was time to address (hide) this issue.  Here is my sewing area before:

It makes me want to pull my hair out just looking at it.  

I dug through my stash of fabric and decided on a couple that would match(ish).  I measured them to fit and hemmed them.  For the shelf, I bought a tension rod and sewed the fabric as I would a curtain.  I slid the fabric onto the rod and stuck it inside the shelf and now the mess is hidden!  For the sewing table, I took a long piece of thin velcro and super glued it to the table.  I had to use scotch tape to hold it in place until it dried.  I sewed the other half of the velcro onto the top of the fabric piece I had prepared.  Once it was dry, I stuck it on and it worked like a charm!  
Doesn't it look much nicer now?

Now I have the illusion of clean and organized.  Just don't look behind the curtain :)!

Monday, October 27, 2014

Pine Cone Spiders

This is a really easy, fun craft for kids of all ages.   I saw this picture on pinterest and I thought this would be the perfect halloween craft and decoration for our porch.  The kids already love collecting pinecones, rocks, shells, and sticks.  It's even more fun when we can find a way to repurpose them.

I didn't read the tutorial to make these, but I offered the link below, so you can.

We just bought chenille sticks from the 99 cent store, plus I had some lying around.  I had a stash of pom poms, a few googly eyes, jute twine, and a hot glue gun.  We cut four chenille sticks in half to create the legs.  I had the kids stick them in where they wanted them and I hot glued everything into place for them.  We then tied the twine around the pine cone and hung them from the balcony and staircase above our patio.  We added some spiderweb to the railing to make it look like they were hanging off their web.  The pictures didn't come out too well, but in person it is cute.  I saved a bunch of the supplies for the neighbor kids, too.  They had a great time making them.  We had ages 4-12 (and 38) :)  do this craft and everyone had fun coming up with their own style of spider.  Here are a few of ours:

 I'm not very good with the spider web stuff and the wind tunnel we live in hasn't helped it much, but it still works.  What I love is that these can easily be saved and used for decoration again next year.

Happy Halloween!!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

New Fabric Art Pieces For Sale

I recently finished several fabric art pieces and I finally got them listed for sale in my Etsy shop.

Here is a look at the pieces and links to the descriptions and listings, if you find yourself interested in one :).

My personal favorite:

Thanks for taking a look!
I hope you like them!

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Mens Shirt to Womens Shorts Refashion

I have a nice collection of mens shirts going right now.  I've had my sights on refashioning this crazy, calypso looking one I inherited from my children's music teacher.

Originally, I envisioned it being a skirt, but once I seam ripped the pockets off I realized that there just wasn't going to be enough usable fabric to pull that off.  I decided to go for shorts, instead.  It's been hot around here lately, so shorts are on the brain (and the bottom!)

This is a pair of my favorite shorts. 

 I love Matsimoto Shave Ice!!  I love shave ice, in general, but something about eating my first one on the North Shore of Hawaii spelled true love to me.  I haven't quite been the same since.  I have a shirt, a hat, shorts, and a sticker on my car … it really became a bit of an obsession.  One day I will get back there again.  Thankfully, we have some great hawaiian shave ice places that have popped up in our area. We have made it our Wednesday ritual to get some after music class.
Mmmmm …. shave ice …..

Oh, wait, we are talking about shorts!  I forgot …. my bad!
Back to the refashion …
I did my best to trace a pattern from my shave ice shorts.  
Here are the pattern pieces I traced:

I used this pant pattern for the waistband and assembly steps.  It seems like there are at least 3 ways to put together pants.  I have a few pant patterns I use and each one has a different approach.  I loved this patterns approach to the waistband, so I followed these directions to make the shorts.

Zip, zip, sew sew … and here they are finished!

I had to use the button holes and button strip as the hem on the bottom front of the pants.
I thought about cutting or hemming them off, but I like the little nod to its past life as a shirt.  That and they would have been shorter than I wanted them.

The back didn't have the finished hem with the button holes/buttons, so I had to find a way to cover up the raw edges without hemming.  I, thankfully, stumbled upon just the right amount of black binding in my stash and used that to line the entire hem.

Here is a little closer look at the front.  

 You can see one leg has the buttons in front

and the other leg has the button holes in front.

I'm going to leave the buttons on.  
I like them :)
And one closer look at the back.

I'm actually pretty stoked on these!  I was able to trace my own pattern off some existing shorts, incorporate the use of a pattern for construction tips, refashion a shirt into shorts, AND it actually fits PERFECT!!!  Shorts and pants are a little tricky for me.  I've had trouble getting the right fit all the way around.  A lot of times they come out too short, or too tight, or too high in the groin (yikes!).  These are just right.  I'm definitely holding onto my homemade pattern to use again.  It feels pretty versatile.  Depending on the fabric and the trim/notions used, you could make these into casual, athletic, or pajama shorts.  If you have a bigger man/shirt you wouldn't even have to worry about the bottom holes and buttons along the hem if you didn't want them.   You could use regular t-shirts.  They took very little time to make, too.  

"Who likes short shorts?"

P.S.  Why does EVERYTHING remind me of some Simpsons episode???