Monday, February 20, 2012

Refurbish an Old Mannequin or Dress Form

It was evident the sewing bug would get to me eventually, with both of my grandmothers being the seamstresses that they were.  My Maw Maw made all my Sunday dresses while my Granny made special things and costumes for me.  Granny was a seamstress for a living, and my favorite thing about her house was "Maude", her dress form.  When I stayed with Granny, she would show me her extra stash bash, hand me a box of safety pins and let me go to work on my own designs.  I would make sure Maude was right in front of the long mirror just like a model.

I inherited Maude after my Granny passed away.  For the longest I was scared to use it again because it was so old, I didn't want to tear it up.  I finally brought it home from my parents house and started to use it.  My daughter also liked it, just like I did, and wanted to dress it up.  It didn't take long for her to tear the thread bear fabric that covered it.  It was upsetting to me, because I didn't want it to lose the charm it had from when it was at Granny's house.  I didn't know what to do, so I put it up again.

I really needed a dress form, but buying a new one just did not seem right.  So I began searching online for the best technique and asking around for advice.  One suggestion kept coming back up: duck tape.
Seriously?

Finally this weekend I decided to brave it.  I adjusted from the inside as much as I could, but the bolts are starting to rust and fall apart.  I started with each seam and taped them in place.  I stretched, pulled and all but stood on my head to get the pieces to line back up again.  Once all the main seams were in tact, I began to fully coat the form with duct tape, taking my time and smoothing it out as I went.  It only took one 55 yard roll of basic duck tape-less than $3-and about 2 1/2 hours to complete.  I turned on the Discovery ID and watched Strange Stories of the ER and fully took my time.  It's not perfect, but I think it will work quite nicely.







What do you think?


G'nite!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Crayon Roll Tutorial

These are really cute and really easy to make.  I searched and searched for instructions and finally came up with my own so I am going to share it with you.  Thank you to my girl Angi over at Bows n Bottlecaps for reminding me of this!


WHAT YOU NEED:
FABRIC (I USED A BANDANA FOR THIS ONE)
FUSIBLE WEBBING
PONY O
MATCHING THREAD
SEWING MACHINE
RULER OR MEASURING TAPE
FABRIC PEN
CRAYONS

MEASURE AND CUT:
3 PIECES OF FABRIC 13 ½" X 5"
1 PIECE FUSIBLE WEBBING SAME SIZE



IRON ON THE FUSIBLE WEBBING TO THE WRONG SIDE OF 1 OF THE 3 PIECES OF FABRIC


TAKE THE 2nd PIECE OF FABRIC, FOLD IN HALF AND IRON


PIN THIS PIECE TO THE 1ST PIECE ON THE RIGHT SIDE OF FABRIC. ALIGN THE OPEN EDGE OF 2ND PIECE WITH THE BOTTOM OF 1ST PIECE. JUST PIN ON EACH END TO HOLD IN PLACE.


 NEXT YOU WILL BEGIN MARKING YOUR LINES. USE A WATER SOLUABLE FABRIC PEN. START BY MAKING YOUR FIRST LINE IN THE MIDDLE, WHICH WILL BE AT 6 ¾".



THEN MAKE A LINE EVERY INCH AFTER THAT. YOU SHOULD HAVE A TOTAL OF 13 LINES.



YOU ARE ONLY MAKING THE LINES ON THE FOLDED PIECE OF FABRIC.



NEXT YOU WILL BEGIN STITCHING EACH LINE, BACKSTITCH AT BEGINNING AND END TO LOCK IN PLACE.



NEXT, TAKE THE PONY O AND ALIGN IT JUST ABOVE THE FOLDED PIECE, FACING IN TOWARDS THE FABRIC. STITCH OVER IT, CLOSE TO THE EDGE. I DID A ZIG ZAG STITCH AND WENT BACK AND FORTH SEVERAL TIMES.


NEXT TAKE THE 3RD PIECE OF FABRIC AND PLACE IT OVER THE 1ST 2 PIECES, RIGHT SIDES TOGETHER. 



STITCH AROUND ALL SIDES, LEAVING ABOUT A 2" OPENING ALONG THE TOP EDGE.



CLIP THE CORNERS, MAKING SURE NOT TO CUT THROUGH THE STITCHING.



START TURNING RIGHT SIDE OUT THROUGH THE OPENING. YOU CAN USE A BLUNT PENCIL, OR I USED A CROCHET HOOK, TO PUSH THE EDGES OUT.




IRON FLAT ALL THE WAY AROUND AND FOLD IN THE OPEN EDGE.
(NOTE-I SPRAYED WATER FROM MY IRON OVER THE MARKINGS FIRST TO REMOVE THEM )



 STITCH ALL THE WAY AROUND, MAKING SURE TO CLOSE UP THE OPENING.






INSERT CRAYONS, ROLL AND SECURE WITH PONY O

And that's it!  But be careful, these can be rather addictive.  Add crayons, a coloring book, and a matching bag (look for that to come) and you've got the perfect inexpensive birthday gift.  When school supplies are first put out, I buy up a bunch of the 19 cent boxes and have them on hand to fill one with. 
Please let me know if you make one, I would love to see your take on this!
G'nite!



Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Birthday Dress

As tired as I was after a weekend of birthday celebrating, I still managed to make my little girl a birthday dress to wear to school on Monday.  Remember this fabric?
How about the ribbon flowers?

I wanted to make a long peasant dress/top from the Brook Dress pattern I have, but I wanted to change it up a bit.  I wanted to try out searing since I finally got the technique down pat.  I increased the width by 50% for each panel and then sewing in 5 rows of searing about a 1 1/2 inches from the top.
Trial and error.
Sorry I don't have pics to post, but I was a little too frustrated to think about it at the time.  The dress itself is a non-fitted design, and I believe I could have done the searing without increasing the width, or with minimal increasing.  Needless to say, it was too big.  And then I gave too much at the top for the elastic and made the area under the arms too small.  It took a little adjusting, some seam ripping, but I got it to work.
I took some of the contrasting fabric and made some straps (albeit too long-I'll fix that later) and sewed them in place on the back of the dress.
All in all, it turned out pretty cute.

For the hair bow, I took 2 of the ribbons I used for the flowers, stacked and glued them together.  Grabbed my bottle cap/images stash and made her a quick bow the morning before she went to school.  The bottle cap for the center piece has her initial in it.

I took cup cakes to school along with a surprise lunch then got her out of school early.  She had her yearly well check so it was excused ;-)

Now it's time to start planning Bubba's 4th birthday party...Disney's Cars. 

What do you think of the party and birthday dress?  What party plans are you making?  I'd love to hear from you!

G'nite!

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Little Girl's Sleep Over Party ~ Thursday & Friday

Thursday was more about getting the house cleaned than anything, but I did manage to get a few more party things accomplished.  I made the home made icing and put it in the fridge for Friday, coloring part of it and giving it a chance to set up and become a brighter pink.  I also decorated the table and wall but neglected to get picutes as I was going, but final pictures are coming below.
I got the idea for the streamers and balloons on the wall from this link on Pinterest.  I used tacky finger to secure everything to the wall, which keeps the wall from getting damaged.  Unfortunately the tacky finger was blue, and it showed through.  Easy fix.  I took the same polka dot duck tape I used on the water bottles and ran a strip across the top of the boarder and the table cloth.  I used a matching table cloth to hang on the wall; I didn't think my green wall flowed well ;-)


When I got off work Friday, I had 2 hours until the guests arrived...and then 2 came a half hour early.  I was still getting everything to the table when 5 hungrey little girls were starting to attack.  I made home made pizza rolls from a recipe on Pinterest (that I have used many times), cup cakes, cake poppers (my first attempt with icing and they don't look as good as I had planned-but they were still yummy), a snack mix of Buggles, Gold Fish, and Gold Fish Mix ups.  You will also see the pretzels sticks and flower suckers I made in the picture as well. 




Finally we had ice cream.  I scooped it out ahead of time and placed in cup cake wrappers and refroze them.  When they were ready, I put the ice cream in to the remaining plastic wine glasses I had purchased for the party tray craft.

All and all I think the girls had a great time.  We had home made waffles and muffins for breakfast and now my 2 precious babies are sacked out in the middle of the living room floor.  I think this Dixie Diva is going to curl up on the couch and do the same.



I hope our party ideas inspire someone to do the same!  Please comment or share a link to your own party ideas, I'd love to see what you come up with!

G'nite!




Thursday, February 2, 2012

Little Girl's Sleep Over Party ~ Wednesday

As the week dwindles down I am getting the final preperations in order for my little girl's first sleep over party.  I told her she could have 2 friends stay the night, 3 at the most.  We are up to 4, possibly 6.  So if you don't hear from me for a while after this weekend then you'll know I didn't survive lol!

On Wednesday I worked on a cake stand made with 2 items from the Dollar Tree: a silver platter and a 6 pack of plastic wine cups.  I wanted to keep in the pink-black-white theme, so I pulled out the trusty paint.  I took one of the plastic cups and painted it hot pink-2 coats. 

Next, I took a pencil and stuck the eraser end into black and white paint to make polka dots.



After it had all dried, I coated it with a finishing spray and let it sit.  It was then time to put it all together.
Because this is a plastic cup, I wanted to weight down the inside before attaching my silver platter to the top.  Too much weight on either side of the platter and over she will go!  I took some more of the glass rocks I had (I had these in vases with artificial flowers that had been stored away for some time) and filled the cup to the top.

I put hot glue all around the rim of the cup and attached the silver platter.

Viola!

Also on Wednesday, I made candy melt pretzels and dressed up the display box from Tuesday's post.





For the display box, I made ribbon and crepe paper flowers then attached them to the foam core with toothpicks.






To make the ribbon flowers, I took a needle and thread and began to make stitches on the bottom of the ribbon and started cinching it it.  I didn't cut the ribbon from the roll until I had what I felt like was enough.  I used 4 yards of ribbon for these you see pictured.
I then took the crepe paper, waded it up and then flattened it back out for texture, and then accordion folded it.  Simple, cheap, and made with items on hand!

This mom is worn out and the party is not even here yet!  Thursday brings the wall and table decor, candy suckers, and hopefully the home made icing.

G'nite!