Monday, November 22, 2010

A Little Lace Goes A Long Way

I know I have been on a cardigan kick, and I promise I will take a break...right after this post! I have found a simple, easy, and did I mention cheap, way to update your old cardigan. And as this is a blog is about sharing fashion secrets, I would love to share mine with you.

Lace has been everywhere, but be careful cause a little lace goes a long way, and too much...well...lets just leave that to late night gentleman's clubs. A wonderful example of how it can be done right? Well, here are some pics! But remember to keep reading after the pics, and I will show you how to create that chic look in a oh so simple way.

Cute right?! I just love the feminine touch! Ok, so here is the first step to creating this look at the price of just a few dollars:

Step 1:

Get yourself some uber cute lace. I got mine from Hobby Lobby, but even Walmart is stocked with this wonderful fabric decor.

Step 2:

Measure it to the cardigan. You will want to decide if you want the lace to go all the way from the top to the bottom of the cardigan, or if you want the lace to end when you reach the design on the bottom (if it has one like this cardigan does).

Step 3:

Ok, once you have your lace cut to measure, you will need to pin the lace next to the band the buttons are on. You will do this for both sides of the cardigan (the band with buttons and the band with button holes).

Step 4:

Sew the lace onto the cardigan with one line, pretty close to the edge of the lace and the beginning of the band. Then you will sew the bottom of the lace to the cardigan, and the top of the lace to the top of the cardigan. This should secure the lace if it is not to ruffly. If it is ruffly (like mine is in the picture), then you can just sew small sections of the outer part of the lace to the cardigan. These sections should be so small that you won't see them, and for my cardigan I only needed 3 small sections to hold it to the cardigan firmly, but with the small sections it still lets the lace bubble up and add dimension. Again, however, you don't have to do that if you don't want, and you won't have to if you choose a lace that sits flat when you pull it straight. If you do pick a lace like this then you will make sew two lines down the length of the lace: one near the button band, and the other down the middle. If you do this, make sure the thread is the same color as the lace.

Step 5:

Ta da!

This is the cardigan I finished! You know it was easy if I could do it. Now go make a cute and stylish cardigan of your very own for the price of lace and thread. Good Luck!

Fabric Flowers Tutorial

I had a ton of fun with the tutorial of how to add lace to a cardigan, and I have seen friends who have already used this and they looked great! (Andrea, your cardigan turned out great!). So I have decided to do another how-to and this one if SOOO easy! Get ready for lots of fun reinventing something simple and turning it into something chic! (all these exclamation points, do you think I am excited about this one?)

Ok, so to get you pumped I have added a couple of pics to show you what we are doing:

Have you guessed it yet? 

Fabric flowers! Ok, so this is so easy and I have done it myself to some of my tees and it only took 20 min and my shirt was ready to wear. 

1st Step:

You want to get a plain old tee, I personally am using one that I got from Gen-X in Utah. I got this tee thinking I could wear it with anything, but then found that I wasn't. They are super cheap there if you don't have one already, or they have some at Hobby Lobby. I am hoping, however, that this tutorial will help you just add to something you already have :)

2nd Step: 

Round up your materials. You will need:

1.  Strips of fabric to make the flowers (this will depend on how big you want them. For my little ones I used 1 inch x 6 inch fabric pieces. 
2.  A sewing needle and thread to match flower fabric
3.  Scissors
4.  No sew heating bond (optional). 

3rd Step:

Ball up fabric, and place that ball where you want the center of the flower to be. Sew up through the shirt and back down through the fabric to secure the center of the flower. 

4th Step: 

Twist the fabric and then wrap it around the center of the flower. 

6th Step:

Once you have wrapped all of the twisted fabric around the center, sew up and down the same way you did the center and secure the rest of the flower. I usually do this 5 or 6 times all around the flower to secure it. 

Voila! One flower done :)

Now that you know how to make one flower you can continue to add them to the shirt in a cluster until you have reached your desired look. 

7th Step: (this one is optional).

I like to take a couple pieces of the leftover strips you haven't used for flower and use them to cover up the thread on the inside of the shirt. 

Take some "No-sew bond" (you can get it anywhere, I get mine from walmart. 1 yard for 2 bucks). Follow the instructions of how to bond fabric to fabric. 

Use a clothes iron to bond the fabric to the No-Sew Bond. 

Peel the protective paper off the back of the sealant. 

Now place the sealant side of the fabric onto the shirt, over where the thread is you used to sew on the flowers. 

It isn't very pretty, but I like to do it so that I do not have to worry about the thread coming loose in the washing machine. 

You are done! Hooray! See it isn't too difficult. Here is my finished product:

Now your simple tee is simply chic-i-fied. Have fun wearing what feels like a new shirt!

The Big Reveal!

It only took me long enough! Here is the shirt I was going to add sleeves to. Remember I wanted them to look ruffly instead of making my shoulders broad with a t-shirt underneath.

Drum roll please......

I am excited about how it turned out :)

*wearing: shirt (walmart, because I am that cool), owl necklace (

yeah, Link is a huge cheese and kept trying to climb my leg to be in the picture :) He has the dopiest smile here, hahaha. 

Ok, so I can't lie, I actually cheated a little bit. Yes I created the sleeves and sewed them on, but I did not use the fancy link that I put on my blog post earlier. I will share my secret, but I am warning you, seamstresses will probably cringe at this makeshift sleeve pattern trick. 

So first I turned the sleeve inside the shirt so that I knew just how the sleeve should be where I was going to connect it to the shirt in the end. 

(maybe should have turned this upright, oops. Keep in mind this is upside down). Ok, so you take the top part of the inside out sleeve and place it on the fold with the remaining inside out sleeve going down the length of the fabric. This is how it will look when it is cut out. The straight line, opposite the half circle, is the part of the sleeve that will show so determine how far away that should be from the half circle based on how long you want the sleeve. 

Here is the sleeve. The rounded part at the top will match up the inside seam of the original sleeve if you have cut it right. Hem up the straight part opposite the rounded part. 

Then you take the sleeve and sew the rounded part to the inside seam where the original sleeve and shirt meet. This way you are not messing with the shirt except just to add another sleeve. 

Sheesh, maybe that was more confusing than the original link I gave you! Regardless, there it is if you can understand it :)

Hope this helps!

Need More Sleeve?

Have a shirt where the cap sleeve just isn't long enough? You feel like you are always checking to see if you are covering everything? If you answered "no" then I am sorry this one isn't for you, but tune in next week :) If "yes", well awesome because I am going to help you solve that fashion woe!

Ok, so I have this cute plaid shirt that I bought thinking the sleeves would be long enough. They were not. In fact the sleeves were so short that adding a t-shirt underneath wouldn't work because the t-shirt sleeves were far too long looking, which it is ok to have long t-shirt sleeves, but in this case it made my broad shoulders seem military-man broad. As I am not a man and do not want to look like one, I opted for another option.

I am going to add 2 sleeves under the original sleeve. Because everyone is different sizes, lengths and not to mention how different each of our shirts are, you will need to follow this advice on how to make the sleeve you need.

Here is my shirt that I am going to do this to:

As you can see, the sleeves are barely there, and I have actually already added one of the sleeves (it is black satin). Adding more than one sleeve will allow me to add length without making it look too obvious I did it myself, and it will go with the ruffled look of the sleeve that is already present to give it a more girly shoulder instead of manly broad shoulders. 

I will post pictures next week of the finished project! Good luck on your own sleeve making!