Feb 16, 2015 | DIY
So it’s still Winter and I wanted a (p)leather skirt – midi length, so demure, yet made of a material that’s a little reminiscent of biker gangs. That’s just how I roll.
Midi-length leather and pleather skirts have been a Winter staple for awhile – and I love that the quilting pushes it into Chanel-esque territory without being anywhere near that price-point. Plus quilting can hide fabric (or pleather) that is actually quite cheap and force it to look more expensive. And no hemming required! Here’s how:
Aug 2, 2014 | By Carly J. Cais, DIY
A couple years ago I was desperately wanting some galaxy-print fabric since clothing featuring photorealistic prints of stars was just about everywhere. But I couldn’t find any fabric sellers that sold this particular print!! So I just Did It Myself, and designed a number of fun galaxy-print fabrics on Spoonflower.com, utilizing licensed Hubble Telescope images of star fields, quasars, Red Giants, planets, and galaxies. I worked on them in Photoshop to adjust the colorization and created seamless repeating patterns so they would be perfect for fabric (or even wallpaper!). In order to offer them for sale in my shop, I had to order test swatches to check the color and printing. For one of the designs I ordered a fat quarter of Organic Cotton Sateen (upper right in the photo above), not quite sure what I wanted to make with it but certain that I wanted a good enough amount to make something neat. And I finally hit upon a little mini-skirt (though had I ordered 1 yd, I would have had enough for front AND back!).
As it was I had to use some black cotton sateen for the back, but it turned out pretty well regardless and I’m just as pleased with it as if it had been galaxy-print all the way around.
I used Butterick Pattern 6834, chopping the length at View E (since that’s all the galaxy-print fabric I had). (I believe the pattern is no longer available.)
Here are some similar patterns you could use:
It sewed up quickly and was pressed and hemmed in no time, and now I have a fun mini-skirt for Summer!
If you’re looking for this same galaxy fabric, it is here:
Or other galaxy print fabrics: (click through to access my shop on Spoonflower)
They look great as blouses, T-shirts, even leggings (on stretch cotton jersey!!)
Stay tuned for my outfit featuring this skirt, coming soon to the blog.
Feb 27, 2014 | DIY
As I posted (quite awhile ago now!), skirts and dresses with faux sleeves tied in the front are a mini-trend that has made it all the way from the runways of Celine to everyday street style. It’s a cute way to define the waist and yet add a casual twist to any outfit. I figured it would be super-easy to re-purpose a sweatshirt into a little skirt with the sleeves as non-functional accessories. With 5 straight seams to sew, it’s also fairly quick and easy, even for sewing beginners. Here’s how to make your own version of this look: (more…)
Dec 8, 2013 | DIY
“Make the workmanship surpass the materials.”
I absolutely love using unconventional materials in my DIY’s. To me, any and everything could be used for a wearable – and I never hesitate to question “Could I use that?” if I find a texture, shape, or pattern interesting. Anywhere, even the Home Depot, Wal-Mart, or garage sales – could offer up a potential material that could be used for a DIY. Some of my favorite past DIYs include these unconventional materials, including my DIY 80’s Acrylic Earrings from a Photo Frame, DIY Lace Maxi-Skirt from a Curtain, DIY 40’s-Style Kitty Beret from a Pirate Hat, DIY Bolo Tie Style Necklace from a Shoelace, and DIY Boho Bangles from Curtain Rings. Enter the unassuming polyester shower curtain. From a pin on Pinterest I found this gorgeous gemstone pattern (above) – and followed it to UrbanOutfitters.com where I found it was actually a shower curtain by a company called Family Jewels, a Danish interior design company. (And it’s still available for purchase!)
Family Jewels Diamond Shower Curtain, $44.99 (sale)
I loved the pattern so much I couldn’t resist the opportunity to do something amazing with it – so I snapped it up and waited impatiently for it to arrive. When I opened the package I found that it was made of a stiff, somewhat waterproof polyester, which to me felt a bit like a stiff satin or taffeta…which got me thinking ballroom skirts. Billowy, poufy, elegant – and perfect for holiday parties! So I set about making my own. Here’s how I did it:
1 shower curtain / fusible lightweight interfacing / iron + ironing board / scissors / pins / marking chalk / measuring tape / matching thread / sewing machine + needle for lightweight polyester / 9″ long invisible zipper / overlocker or serger (optional)
How To: *sorry no photos of the process/materials, since I actually made the skirt at about 1 AM in my living room!
1. Basically, I followed this tutorial here for the making of the skirt, so full credit needs to go to Gertie’s Blog for Better Sewing. HOWEVER, make sure that when you cut you do it on your fabric that is folded over, so you are cutting 2 of each pattern piece and the waistband is one long length since it was cut on the fold (it escaped my notice until Part 2 of the tutorial, which was entirely my fault.) For my skirt, my measurements were: 41″ long and 32.5″ high. My waistband was 32″ long and 4.75″ high. (Both including about 0.5″ of seam allowance.) I also utilized the finished edges of the shower curtain in my cut piece so that I would have less overlocking to do.
2. I then overlocked all raw edges, except those that would be hidden inside the waistband.
3. Then, I followed Part 2 of the tutorial for the construction of the skirt. It came together quite quickly and I made it in about 2 hours the night before I had to go to the airport to go to the 3-day Lucky FABB event in October!
When I attended Lucky FABB, my DIY Ballroom Skirt from a Shower Curtain caused quite a stir, with bloggers stopping me to ask me where I got it, and Erica Domesek of P.S. I Made This even going so far as to compliment it when I asked a question to her during a panel. (!! what a moment!!)
This skirt also looks amazing when worn over a crinoline or a petticoat so that it has even more stiffness and stands away from the body more. If you are in the market for a new ballroom skirt like this one, definitely check out home decor stores now: with it being the holidays, shimmery, sequinned, sparkly shower curtains are readily available…and much, much cheaper than buying a skirt ready-made. How about you? Have you ever used unconventional materials for something that turned out much better than you hoped?
May 3, 2013 | DIY
What could be more Summery than beautiful photographs of must-visit vacation spots? And nothing can herald the coming of this season more than wearing said photos on your person: an apparel-fueled mental vacation, if you will.
Get A Life is a series of photo-printed tops for men, sold at Wal-Mart for very affordable prices (around $9 and up, and now available on eBay by the hundreds). Their pieces are made of a stretchy polyester, which makes them wonderfully-suited for women’s clothing (especially bodycon styles!). These T-shirts, since made for men, are already oversized (read: TONS of workable fabric!)…and very easily remade into something perfect for a woman…and perfect for fun in the sun. Here’s how:
You Need: (more…)