The Bi-Polar Peacoat.

Now, before you guys go telling me that this isn’t a Pinterest worthy project, I’m not done. I’m just excited like a kid on Christmas. Like how they rip through paper, ribbon, and duct tape (that’s normal, right?) like they are little, travel-sized super heroes. They trudge through socks and underwear and church clothes until the get that one thing… for me it was a microscope / disection kit when I was like 10. I was weird, I know. Spare me the lecture, but I spent upward of 129 straight hours investigating the microscopic properties of every food and fiber in our house.

Anyway. Flashback aside. I was too excited about the near completion of one of the more challenging projects I’ve ever had. I spent most of Wednesday night crying over button holes. My machine hates me apparently. Every time I used my machine to do a button hole on my scraps, they were picture perfect. Then, as soon as I lowered the foot onto my actual project, it would eat these unsightly holes in my garment. So needless to say, you won’t get a single closeup of that particular stitching.

Let’s get down to it though! I’ve told you all about the work, but you have no clue as to what my project is! Here is my starting point:

3XL men’s hoodie, Clearanced for $6.99

Now, I am an impulse buyer, which means that I saw this much material for such a price and I HAD to have it. So I bought it. I thought I could cut it up and downsize it for a project. Be low you will see the cuts I decided to make. But note that I didn’t cut any material out of the waist’s circumference… I wanted it to be too big there so it would overlap and button on one side.

I’ve never sewn pockets before. But you know that, if you’ve read my other sewing projects. 95% of everything I’ve ever sewn is logged in the blog. However, after the disasters that were my buttonholes, I really wanted to do something to give my wrapping jacket a pop! I decided pockets probably weren’t THAT difficult, so I started to sketch out a pattern:

I had to redraw this at least 7 times. What was my scale you ask? My cell phone… What is a pocket if it can’t hold my phone?!

Now: Here is the reason I called this the bipolar peacoat: I was so giddy about how well I though my pockets turned out that I was jumping and laughing, especially considering what a traumatic experience trying to make a few freaking buttonholes was. Check this shiznit out:

I’m not saying that these are professional-seamstress-who’s-been-sewing-nothing-but-pockets-for-forty-years kind of quality. Give me a little gold star though, they’re pretty for being my first…

Here is my nearly finished project, I’m still going to add a few more details but over all I really love it. I can’t wait to wear it with some saucy little combat boots. Oh and for future reference, you may call me the pocket master.

Ta-Da! (hold the applause, really, you’re too kind!)

 

 

 

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Getting My Snip On

I found a cute wool skirt at the Goodwill next to my house. It was that really awkward length, between ankle and tea length. I hate that length. It makes me feel like a troll. I feel like it makes me look blocky and lumpy.

So I got my hemming on. I took it up to a shortish length, because I envision myself wearing it with opaque tights… which I couldn’t find for the picture. I really like it. It’s cut in just enough to give me the illusion of an hourglass figure.

I was also proud because the skirt had a built in nylon liner that gave me some worries. It turned out scrumptiously though!

Before and After. PS: who found a sweet photo connecting app? This Girl Did.

Shirley Temple-esque Dress.

I’m PMSing this week. I ‘m saying that because I know that there aren’t a lot of men out there who read blogs centered on crafts, cooking and  the mental ramblings of a girl. That being said, I am a little irritable this week, with absolutely EVERYONE. Around this time, every month, I get weepy and introspective. This month I’m deciding to DO something about all of the things that continue to surface. I’m going to be starting my own Happiness Project. I find that I’ve lost so much of what makes me…. ME, in the last ~2 years. More on that later, though.

Tonight, I have a sassy new upcycle for you! Before I even start, I’m going to apologize. I SUCK so bad at taking ‘before’ pictures. I always forget until I’m halfway through each project. So I have a bunch of boring words for you, until I show you my finished project. I bought a muumuu. Yes. I was lucky enough to stumble upon a lovely sack-dress, with a pretty pattern and interesting lattice stitching on the bodice portion of the sack.

I took the dress in on the sides, enough to make the bodice defined and fitted. I took the sleeves off and hemmed the holes. Lastly I chopped about 16″ off the bottom to give it some nice summer appeal. This is where I ended the project:

Gimme a hair cut and I’ll start singing about animal crackers and soup

I love, loveeeeeee the pockets! I can’t wait to wear this to Waterfront Park and enjoy some shaved ice and sunshine. What are you doing to improve yourself this week?

High Waisted Pants into a Summer Time Skirt

So, I found these atrocious plaid pants at the thrift store. I thought originally that they might be cute as shorts, but the waist line was so high that  I would have had to cut it off and make a new one… I was a little worried that was beyond my scope of experience. Unfortunately, I already own these ugly things so now I have to figure something out to do with them.

Sexy, huh?

Since the crotch of these pants seems to be the epicenter of my problem, I decided to remove it. Now, don’t think I’m getting all weird, I’m not talking about making a pair of crotchless pants. I decided to make a skirt! I started by cutting off the pants not too far below the offending area.

SnipSnipSnip

After that I had to make a new seam, because leaving the original inseam would look very strange…

The new seam runs just next to the scissors.

I’ve got to be honest. This is absolutely the BEST thing to come off my sewing machine, ever. I’m a little bit in love and I can’t wait to wear this on the beach!

Finished Product!

I also decided to make a matching headband with the left over material! Ahhhhhhh It’s so good to have my mojo back again!

Elastic and all.

On my head.

Have a lovely Sunday! I’m off to eat my hummus!

Upcycled Men’s Dress Shirt

Right now I’m laying in bed, eating a lovely spinach and artichoke hummus. It’s been a very exhausting week and these alteration projects are taking A LOT more time and energy than I was expecting. For each alteration that I decide to make I have to spend an hour or more researching different techniques. After that,  it takes two, three, four or more attempts to get it any where near acceptable.

I’ll tell you what. I follow 49 dresses, Marisa Lynch, and Jillian Owens religiously and these girls make it look like a freakin’ breeze. Oh Marisa, how I loathe the day that I stumbled upon your blog! I am now determined to be able to make my horrible Goodwill finds look incredible, and it appears as though I will spend the rest of my life figuring this tedious, mind numbing stuff out. Ughhhhhh!

So, I’m sparing you guys the ugly… monotonous… details. I bought this men’s dress shirt at goodwill for a few dollars. It was long enough to be a slutty dress-tent hybrid, and the sleeves hung about 6 inches past my wrist.

Anyone want to have a circus under this big top?

I didn’t catalog every step, mostly because I don’t want any of you to see the up close details. So I’ll just give you the no-visual-aid-included rundown. I:

-used my seam ripper to detach the sleeves
-took the sides in ~1.25″ on each side to equal about 5″ total
-used my rotary cutter and a pattern to deepen the cut of the arm holes to make the shirt more of a tank
-added darts to reduce the sleeve gapping
-trimmed the sleeve hems with a white fabric in a quilt-style binding

The darts took me no less than 4 attempts and they still aren’t even. I’m not stressing over it though. Here is the finished product:

Reminiscent of 50’s house wife?

I’ve got a couple more projects in the works, both sewing and non. If you have any interesting ideas… pass them along! as for now, I’m addicted.

New Year’s Ponderings

So last year my only New Year’s resolution was to be a bit more free-spirited and not to put myself under such pressure. Mission ACCOMPLISHED! This year I have a few more on the list. I am under no illusion that I won’t falter on some (if not all) of these. But, hey, it is time my horizons were broadened:

Which will be very difficult while it stays this cold.

1.] I will log 9 miles in my running journal every week.

ZZZZZzzzzzzzZZZZZZZZzzzzzzzz.........

2.] I will stop being so lazy in the kitchen! Time to get back to cooking REAL food!

Maybe I'll shoot for something healthier...

3.] I will cook at least one completely new dish every month. (Which brings me to #4…)

Do it. Do it. Do it!

4.] I will stop neglecting my blog-child so cruelly.

*ping* *ping* *ping* *ping*

5.] I will try not to over-think so many things; men are at the TOP of that list.

Hey! I'm already halfway there!

6.] I will complete the Mini-Marathon on April 28, 2012, in NO MORE than 2.5 hours.

Someone buy me some band-aids.

7.] I will complete the sewing projects that are stacked up around my sewing machine.

Eh?

8.] I will visit at least 2 new countries.

nom nom nom nom

9.] No more junk food to be kept in the house. I have no illusion that I will go the whole year without eating any, but SkinnySara will at least make it more difficult for FatSara to have her way.

ugh. I don't want to talk about my feelings.

10.] This one is a little personal; I will tell someone new that I love them. Of the 4 men who have professed their love for me, I have yet to say it back. I think it might be time to stop being so guarded and frigid.

This list is part of that last one. I am very guarded with my thoughts and feelings. I figured that a good place to start being more open was with those of you who deem my thoughts worth your time to read. So go easy on me.

Oh. And Howard says that his New Year’s resolution is to learn one new sign every month. So if you happen to come across a blog dedicated to training deaf dogs… I’d peep it. Love you all, so very, very much.

This particular trick is called Lazy-Blanket-Volcano-Puppy

Cute, But Lazy.

 
Favorite band of the moment, meet The Civil Wars. Band member: Not Johnny Depp, Girl with a lot of teeth.

Yoga Bags and Barley Stew.

I’m not feeling very loquacious tonight, but I have severely neglected my blog so I wanted to get my latest project out there. I stole the idea for these Yoga Bags from the ever-crafty Amber…  

Cutting Mat, Rotary Cutter, Clear Grid Ruler, Standard Ruler

It was happenstance that my dessert plates are exactly 7" in diameter...

All of my cutting is done!!

 (1) 20×28 for body of bag (2) 2 5×30 strips to be sewn together to make the strap (3) 7 inch diameter notched circle for the bottom of the bag.

So let's grab a quick bite of dinner...

I LOVEEEE cereal… HoneyNut Cheerios rock my world! 

Gap left to sew in the carrying strap.

 Trying to get this right was a pain in my BUTT!

Finished Yoga bag for my Seester!

My Yoga Bag!

See? I told you I wasn’t feeling super chatty! But I’ll Tell you about the barley/veggie stew I made tomorrow!  As a tribute to Amber for giving me the idea I needed to DO SOMETHING here is a Band of Horses song that I’ve been fond of for a while… Thanks Ambro Wright!