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This still took longer than 90 minutes the second time around, but it definitely went together a whole lot faster without having to run to the computer in our office before every step.  Nevertheless, this met the hour-a-day challenge for days six and seven. 

90 Minute Shirt v2.0

 

This was made using a clearance rack Old Navy shirt of mine with an insanely wide rounded neckline that just never worked quite right.  I loved the wide band on the bottom.  This didn’t have the extra-stretchy issues as my first shirt.  I used contrasting off-white thread instead of matching the grey from the shirt.  (Design feature or that I didn’t have any grey thread?  You decide.)  

Trying on for fit

Again, Arden wouldn’t hold still to get a good picture, but she was at least in one place for a moment after climbing up on a kitchen chair.

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Following the tutorial for The 90 Minute Shirt on MADE, this meets my hour-a-day requirement for the Kid’s Clothes Week Challenge for days four and five.  I know it’s called The 90 Minute Shirt, but it took me a bit longer than that, and I had to make up my pattern following the instructions here, also on MADE. 

Pattern

Here are my completed pattern pieces.  This part was pretty easy and straightforward.  I used a onesie that fit Arden recently, and then used a shirt she’s wearing now to get the sleeve length.

Double overedge

 Since I don’t have a serger (Dave if you’re reading this – hint, hint for Christmas!), I found a stitch on my sewing machine that I thought made a close approximation – double overedge.

Completed shirt

Here’s the finished product.  I did exactly what Dana warned about and wrapped the envelope backwards and had to tear it out and do it the right way.  This was even after I turned it right side out after pinning.  Mostly I think it was because the shirt of mine I used for this project is ribbed and really stretchy, so my front and back didn’t look all that different.  I have another shirt and different ribbing to try this again, so I’m considering this a trial run.

Mug shot

It fits her pretty well, although since the shirt was super stretchy is looks a bit loose.  If I do this again with this type of material, I’ll make sure when I pin the ribbing on that I keep the shirt from stretching. 

Anyone have any tips on how to get an 18 month-old to sit still long enough to get a decent shot with a point and shoot?  I see all these fabulous pictures you all are taking, and I cannot for the life of me figure how you do it.  This was one instant after I asked her to sit still for a minute, and then she was off again…

Tackling Erwin

See?

Remember the jeans I refashioned into a pencil skirt for me a couple of days ago?  Well, here they are again!

All done!

I really liked the nice big hem on these jeans and knew as soon as I started the skirt refashion for me that I wanted to do a toddler skirt for Arden.  How handy that Homemade by Jill also had a tuturial for a baby skirt as a guest on another blog I’m following – Kojo Designs!  I wonder if she had leftover parts from her jean to maternity skirt refashion as well?  Her tutorial was for an infant, so here’s my stab at it with a few changes to resize to toddler:

So, here’s where I cut the bottoms off the jeans to make my pencil skirt.

Remember me?

Next, I had to sew the pieces together to get a tube of the appropriate width.  Arden has an 18″ waist, and I figured that the pleats would take up about 8″, so I wanted to start with a 26″ tube.  I used a ruler and rotary cutter to get a nice straight line.

Straight edges

I sewed the pieces together using heavy duty thread and a denim needle.  I finished the seams with an overcast stitch (you can zig zag or serge if you have a serger), and then sewed the finished seams down to prevent any rubbing.

Overcast edges

 I cut the height to 7½” and finished the top edge.

Finished tube

Next, I cut a tube of t-shirt material 5″ x 18″.  I did one piece instead of two in Jill’s instructions, but either way works.  I went with 18″, so the completed tube would be a little smaller than A’s waist and help it stay up.  I switched thread and put in a ball-point jersey needle.  Probably overkill on a simple seam but since I have the needles I should use them, right?

t-shirt tube

Then I pinned for the pleats.  I used a centered box pleat in the midlle like Jill, but since I had the seams from the jean legs in about the right spot I made the single pleats go to the outside to highlight this detail.  I pinched ½” of material for each pleat, and the single pleats are about 2″ out from the center pleat.  Repeat on the backside.

Pinned pleats

I sewed the pleats in place with a 1/4′ seam.  Finally, I folded my t-shirt tube in half with the seam inside.  With raw edges together, I pinned the tube to the skirt.  I sewed it on with an overcast stitch to finish the edges and allow it to stretch.

All done!

So, now for confession:  I adjusted all the measurements in my tutorial because somehow I had measured Arden’s waist as 21″ and completed this whole project based on that.  What’s that saying – measure twice, cut once?  I blame it on a toddler who won’t sit still for even a moment!  Anyways, it’s still cute on her and doesn’t fall off or anything.  It will just fit her for longer!  She’s wearing it to daycare today even if it is a little too big.

Extra roomy toddler skirt

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I have a pair of jeans I got in a post-baby attempt to be a little more current, but every time I wear them I spend the entire day hiking them up.  I’ve begun referring to them as my “just say no to crack” jeans.  So, into the refashion pile they went.  I’ve seen a few tutorials on how to refashion jeans into skirts, but most of them show where you can see the crotch and leg seams and inset the fabric from the bottom of the legs in the middle.  These are cute, but not quite what I was wanting.  Homemade by Jill has a tutorial for refashioned jeans to maternity skirt that is exactly what I was looking for, minus the maternity band.  So, here’s my version using Jill’s as inspiration:

"Just say no to crack" jeans

I started by using my handy-dandy seam ripper to rip out the inside seams.  For cheapo jeans, these were surprisingly well-constructed, and this took a while.

Inside seams opened

With right sides facing, I pinned the seams together and marked a line using a ruler and chalk to continue in a more or less straight line from the legs to the front and back seams.  I had to sew the butt three times to get a nice smooth transition without any lumpy butt.  I placed pins at the front and back where I planned to cut the skirt off, and stopped a few inches below the marker for a slit in the back.

Marking sewing line

I tried it on again to check the length I wanted to cut (this is where the lumpy butt corrections came in) and marked it.  Then using my quilting rulers to be sure I cut a line straight across, I cut the bottom off.  I have plans for the bottom of the legs – watch for a related post!

Cutting bottom of skirt

Then I finished all the raw edges with an overcast stitch.  You could zig zag the edges, or do a rolled hem to cover the edges.  If you have a serger that would be even better,  but until I get a serger, I like to overcast.  I also top stitched the slit opening, using the existing crease from the original seam.

Finished edges

On to the hem.  I wanted a hem nearly as wide as the jean’s orginal 2″ one, so I went with 1 ½”.  I pinned the hem and sewed ½” from the overcast edge.

Pinning hem

Lastly, I clipped all the stray threads, and ironed the hem.  I’ve been wearing it since I finished it, and I think it’s going to work tomorrow!  Final picture – I did have my husband snap one of the rear view, but I just couldn’t bring myself to post it.

Front

The jeans had a lot of stretch, so these are surprisingly comfortable for as narrow of a skirt it is.  I’m pleased with the final result, and I’m sure I’ll be wearing the skirt more than I wore the jeans, since I had to be very careful about choosing a top long enough to cover my rear.

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The final product

This project started percolating after I had gone through the bins of my pre-pregnancy clothes for like the third time, trying to see if any of my favorites would fit.  A depressing task.  I know I have about 20 or so pounds to lose, but I also need to face facts that things just aren’t ever going to be the same as they used to be.  My shoulders are even broader, my ribcage has spread, and after 13 months of breastfeeding, the girls have found new resting spots.   

There were a couple of shirts that I loved, but I had to resign myself to the fact that even if I lost the weight they simply were never going to fit again.  I was inspired by this refashion from Kalleen At Second Street.  

Here’s the shirt I started with.  So long, old friend.  I loved you well!  

Refashion target

I used a dress of Arden’s as the “pattern”.  More on that later.  

Inspiration dress

I started by removing the collar, as the scale of the collar and the neck opening were too large for an 18-month old.  

Collar removed

Using the inspiration dress as a pattern and using chalk to mark the cut lines, I cut the bib placket out, and cut the yoke piece for the front of the dress and the back of the dress.  I made sure to line up from the bottom of the shirt so I had finished hems to work with instead of having to do my own. 

Tracing silhouette

I gathered the bottom part of the yoke piece using a basting stitch and gathering the bobbin thread, just like the inspiration dress shows.  I pinned it together matching the gathers along the bottom and sewed in place, and then finished the seams with a overlock stitch, since I still haven’t gotten a serger.  I attached the back of the dress to the completed front.  I had to rework the armholes and neck hole a little. 

Completion of bib placket

I deconstructed some of the bottom of the pintucked and ruffled placket and used those for the sleeves.  I took the cuffs off and used those pieces for the collar as they were a better scale and gave it a bit of a mandarin collar.  

Sleeves and collar

Here’s the finished product next to the inspiration: 

Inspiration and refashion

It’s totally cute on, and I’m probably the only one who notices the flaws.  So, here’s what went wrong and what I learned from my first refashion attempt: 

  • I should have had or made an actual pattern.  I used dressmakers chalk and a constructed dress as my pattern, which ended up being very haphazard.
  • I needed to have a better plan in mind before I started.  It all came together, but using the placket as sleeves was not my original intention, and I had to piece the front part of the dress together because I had already cut a big hole in the back of my shirt for the dress back.
  • This was supposed to be a dress, but it’s more tunic length.  Again, I didn’t plan well and a pattern would have ensured that I kept the length.

I have two more shirts that I plan to do something similar with.  Hopefully, I can take my learnings from this refashion and get something even cuter next time! 

Ready for "school"

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