DIY in 5: Chiffon Bow Blouse

Yesterday I coveted it, so today I’m going to show you how to make it. It’s DIY in 5minutes, that is. The easiest, quickest ways to take a piece from blah to fab and update it to current trends.

Also called the pussy-bow blouse on the other side of the pond, a chiffon bow at the collar of any blouse elevates it from everyday into elegant.  But when you’re shopping on a budget (read: buying cheap), often the blouses that are affordable tend to lack such special details.  I thrifted this lovely wide-collar chiffon blouse, but felt it needed an extra something to give it more style.

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30 Days of Outfits Challenge: Day 17

Scottie-print scarf: DIY.  Chiffon ruffle blouse: Victoria’s Secret.  Denim bustier: Forever 21.  Assorted pins: vintage; from Japan; Lamb Tac Pin: Girlprops.com; kilt pin handmade by me.  Pebble-print silk skirt: Banana Republic.  Dainty Lace Ankle Socks: SockTheory.com.  Striped espadrille wedges: Old Navy.

Day 17 in my 30 Days of Outfits Challenge: November 17.

Can you tell what runway show I was inspired by?

photos by Marcio Madeira, Style.com

Yup!  Miu Miu S/S 2010.  It was such an amazing collection with so many fabulous pieces…you could really take each look apart, bit by bit, and find yourself with so many versatile and chic accessories, jewelry items, and unique clothing.

I felt somewhat springy today (even though the weather was anything but)…and so wanted to try mixing patterns and colors and just going crazy with my outfit.

Can you guess what I made my scarf from?

…A pair of little girl’s pajama pants!!!

Yes, I found the pants at the Goodwill Outlet in Spring.  The print reminded me of the Miu Miu collection, they felt satiny, and were still in great condition.

So I washed them and then did the following:

1. Separate the legs into two separate pieces by cutting all the seams apart.

2. Sew the legs together at the waist, so you have one long piece.  Cut the ends on an angle so they look more “scarf”-like.

3. With right sides together, stitch around the edges, leaving about 2″ free.

4. Turn right-side-out and press.

5. Stitch remaining hole closed.

Very, very simple! I had been searching in fabric stores for a silky print similar to the ones in the Miu Miu show, but the fabric stores here aren’t progressive to carry anything similar.  Silky pajamas have a number of great, fun prints – that are definitely very Miu-Miu-esque and look fabulous as an accent piece!

I bought this blouse something like 15 years ago and have not worn it once.  Not once! The tag is still on it, I’m ashamed to say.  Well, now I’ve worn it!;-)

A great way to jazz up a top is to pin on a variety of brooches and pins.  I chose to do so smack-dab in the middle, which is a bit unusual, but (I think) it works.  I made the bottom brooch from a kilt pin and bits of rhinestone jewelry, beads, and findings I had lying around.

And espadrille wedges are so not confined to summer!  You can certainly wear them all year round (though you may have to switch up your leg-coverings;-)

 

What do you think?  Is anyone going to try embellishing with brooches differently…or start searching for that perfect pair of pajama pants to repurpose into a scarf?;-)

Oh, and Katarina from She sells sea shells has posted more of her outfits in this Challenge.  Have you checked out her blog yet?  Please visit and say hi!

xoxox
Carly

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DIY in 5: Fabric Leopard Scarf

 Fold a piece of fabric over and stitch around the edges to make a long rectangular scarf.

Earlier this month I posted some ideas how to style it, today I’m going to DIY it.  It’s DIY in 5minutes, that is.  The easiest, quickest ways to take a piece from blah to fab and update it to current trends.

Animal-prints are still BIG for Fall… and if you’re not ready to go full-on animal, you can try just adding a pop of print to your outfit.  I’ve chosen to craft a scarf – made out of fabric in just the print I chose – in order to dabble in this trend.

How To Make a Quick Folded Fabric Scarf

You Need:

24″ (2/3 of a yard) of 60″ wide printed fabric  //  sewing machine  //  needle matching fabric type  //  thread matching fabric  //  fabric scissors  //  measuring tape

How To DIY:

1. Cut the fabric in half lengthwise so you have TWO pieces that are 12″ wide by 60″ long.

2. Sew the short ends of the two long pieces together. Cut the short ends of the fabric piece so the whole length of the piece is either 72″ or 80″, depending on how long you want your finished scarf.

3. Fold the scarf in half along the super-long end, right sides together.

4. Sew all around the edges, leaving the last 2″ or so unsewn.

5. Turn the fabric right-side out.

6. Sew along the edge to stitch the gap closed.
7. (optional) Iron the scarf flat to set the seams.

And voila!  A new, on-trend scarf in just the print you wanted!  (And yes, this really does take only a few minutes [though it may be closer to 10-15]…and it’s very, very easy!)

You don’t have to do leopard, of course – though I’ve made a version with leopard-printed velour and one with striped jersey.

(Sometimes I even wear them together when I’m feeling frisky!;-)

Make sure the fabric you choose is “puffy” or has some tactile sense to it; otherwise, it will stretch flat like a long, skinny scarf (which is also a great possibility!)  You can try making your scarf wider thank mine by cutting your fabric at 18″ wide (thus, folded over, it will be 9″ wide).  You can even try with faux fur (though cut your fur from the back using a craft knife and NOT a pair of scissors!)  Some fabulous options for your fabric:


Hope you have fun making your own easy printed scarf!

xo
Carly

 

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Formspring.me Question: Summer Hats and Headscarves

img from giftofhair.org

from formspring.me (continued from an earlier question):

I will be shaving my head in a couple of weeks for charity and as I will be pretty much bald (eek!) I was wondering if you had any ideas for cool hats or headscarves to cover me up during the hot summer. For more info on the cause visit my blog: www.susanna-d.blogspot.com

Wow!  Good for you!  That takes guts to do, though it’s certainly for a great cause.

If you’re looking to cover up and aren’t into purchasing a wig while waiting for your hair to grow back, either a hat or a head-scarf (or a combination of the two!) will probably be your best bet.

Hats and Scarves

clockwise, from green hat:

Right now is a really great time for hats, as Target currently is stocking their Eugenia Kim for Target line of stylish, chic hats – for a fraction of the cost of what Eugenia Kim hats usually sell for.  Kim, who shaved her head after suffering a bad haircut, found there was such a lack of stylish headgear on the market that she designed her own cover-up.  Thus, she’s certainly no stranger to your dilemma – and I love that this wide-brimmed straw hat has its own scarf built in to it – an added plus.  This green fedora is super-cute and city sassy, which would look great paired with a floaty tee and bermuda shorts.  You could also try different shapes to see what works with your body type and style; military-style caps, wide sunhats, and boater hats are all on-trend options.

If you’re uncomfortable about a lack of hairline showing, then a head-scarf underneath your hat may be a good (though warm) choice.  You could also, of course, wear the head-scarf on its own, tied in a chignon, bow, or donut shape.  A fun print (like this monotone faces print) can look summery or sophisticated depending on how you tie it.  Here is a video showing 3 variations of tying a head scarf and here is a list of links to other headscarf-tying resources.  If you’re daring, you could also try a turban, though you’d have to pick and choose your coordinating outfit carefully to avoid it looking too matronly.

A cloche is always a great option since it covers your head completely, though they’re often made of felt and may be too warm for summer.  A cloche-shaped straw hat, though, has a slightly retro-feminine feel to it, and looks super-sweet with any casual, breezy outfit.  As the weather cools down you can also go for bucket-shaped and fuller hats made of thicker materials.  Small details like ribbon trim, a flower or rhinestone clip, bows, or tiny fabric flowers elevate something that looks like you’re desperately trying to cover your head up…to a stylish accessory in your ensemble.

Excellent sources of such accoutrements (besides the obvious like department stores or boutiques) are places that specialize in headgear for people who have suffered hair loss for medical reasons, like chemotherapy, alopecia, or trichotillomania.  Headcovers Unlimited and Hat, Scarves, and More are two great online places to start.  (The reversible soft hats from Just In Time are super-chic too!) And since I’m suck a DIY maniac, I might try my hand at sewing up my own head-covering, choosing from the wide variety of patterns for hats and scarves from Brimming with Love.

As always, the more confidence you have, the less people will notice any lack of hair – and most people will just assume any head-covering is part of your stylichly chic ensemble anyway!
Best of luck-
xoxox
Carly

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