Category Archives: Upcycled

Sewing for Kindergarten: No Man’s Land

Sewing for Kindergarten: No Man's Land | Sew Thrifty {www.sewthrifty.org}

It is surreal that I am now sewing for a Kindergartner! And today, I’m joining up with Sewing Like Mad to share my kindergarten looks. Since we are doing an alternative schooling, I immediately knew that I was going to create two looks. Keep reading to see what I mean and why we do school a bit differently.

Is this your first time sending a child to Kindergarten? If not, which number child is this?
Yes! My eldest headed off to Kindergarten in August and despite being 7.5 months pregnant, I handled myself pretty well.
Do you feel like crying or celebrating? And what about your child?
Honestly, there was a week of extreme doubt that ran through me. Originally, we planned on homeschooling every year. When I got pregnant with #4 and struggled balancing everything, I knew I needed some help. We made the decision to start Carpenter in a university model school back in March. And we knew it was the right decision. However, as the week before school hit, I thought, “I could really do this whole schooling thing all by myself.” And “I don’t want him gone at all during the day.” However, as the first day approached, Carpenter’s excitement was contagious and I knew this was the right thing to do for him, for now. (And the right thing for me too!) So, on drop-off day, there were no tears, and he ran right in with a big smile on his face!
Sewing for Kindergarten: No Man's Land | Sew Thrifty {www.sewthrifty.org}
Now, a month into the school year, I am overwhelmed with how much Carpenter is thriving. This is THE school for him. He loves going to school, he loves being home, he loves the structure of school days, he loves the freedom of home days, he loves his teachers, he loves his new friends, and he (gasp) gets along better with his sister….most of the time.
What kind of school does your child attend? 
This is where we are diving off into no man’s land. Ok, not really. BUT, we don’t homeschool or do public or private school. Carpenter attends a university model school. The general idea is that we do school at home on M, W, F, and Carpenter attends school in a traditional classroom on T and Th. The curriculum and pace is set by the school, and our lesson plans are all done for us – different than homeschooling where you would chose all that yourself.
Sewing for Kindergarten: No Man's Land | Sew Thrifty {www.sewthrifty.org}
For the days we are home, we can set the schedule – get it all done early in the morning, or take a field trip or extended weekend vacation to explore and do our work in the car or do all our work on Monday and take Friday off.  We still have to get set tasks done, but there’s great flexibility in when and where it all happens. As Carpenter gets older, this flexibility will be a bit harder as he’ll have more work, but for now, we are loving this flexibility.
And since we are going to school in no man’s land, I had to create two looks to fully capture what our schooling looks like.
Tuesday/Thursday look:
Sewing for Kindergarten: No Man's Land | Sew Thrifty {www.sewthrifty.org}
Since he’s required to wear a uniform, I knew I had to sew his backpack. A sewing mama has to send something handmade to school with her boy, right?
The backpack pattern is the rectangular backpack from Petit a Petit + Family. And, yes, it’s FREE. I love free patterns! Carpenter actually went on a date with me to select his fabrics. Of course, I was secretly hoping for stripes like the original, but when he chose camo, I was still fine. Then he chose blue instead of orange for the pocket and I about died. But, it’s his creation and he loves it.
I added a water bottle holder to both sides using fabric from a swim cover-up given to me by a friend. I knew I held onto that mesh to upcycle at some point!
Sewing for Kindergarten: No Man's Land | Sew Thrifty {www.sewthrifty.org}
“Mom, make sure you get my wristband too!” At the school, they have a house system (yes, like Harry Potter. I told you this school rocks), and Carpenter got selected for Gaudium house, which stands for Joy.  They then get wristbands to coordinate with their house. All throughout the year they can earn points for service, academics, and conduct. Plus they have house games four times a year where they can earn more points. At the end of the year one of the four houses claims the Gryphon Cup!
Mon/Wed/Fri look:
PJs. Ok, I do make him get dressed most days. So, I threw together a raglan featuring some cool graphics and green pants. I’m all about some green pants.
Sewing for Kindergarten: No Man's Land | Sew Thrifty {www.sewthrifty.org}
“Reading” Farmer Boy. He’s not quite reading yet, but he does love a good read aloud, and he soaks up all the good classics so far – I am very blessed to have this little learner!
 
The pants were made using Shwin and Shwin’s Nowhere Man Pants pattern, which I scored for $3 during some sale this past year.  I had been eyeing that pattern for a while and impatiently waited until I was able to get them on sale. And the green twill I practically stole from Hancock Fabrics when they were going out of business. I think I paid $1.50/yard for this color.
Sewing for Kindergarten: No Man's Land | Sew Thrifty {www.sewthrifty.org}
The pockets feature some math facts fabric that I purchased many years ago at a little hole in the wall fabric shop in the middle of no man’s land Mississippi. Turns out that Carpenter loves math, so these are just right for him.
Sewing for Kindergarten: No Man's Land | Sew Thrifty {www.sewthrifty.org}
These are such great pants – I cannot wait to sew up some more! And, their name is perfect for where we fit in the educational system – nowhere. Ha. I have to explain what a university model school is every time I tell about where Carpenter goes to school. But that’s ok, because it’s a GREAT model! As Carpenter gets older, he will attend more hours on the school’s campus and be more responsible for his own work – emailing his teachers, etc. Right now, he attends school from 8:30 am – 1 pm on Tuesday and Thursday, and we work together on what he needs to be responsible for in his schoolwork.
At the beginning of school, I asked him what he wanted to learn about and he answered: cooking!
Sewing for Kindergarten: No Man's Land | Sew Thrifty {www.sewthrifty.org}
Although maybe the reason he likes to cook is because he likes to eat so much.
Sewing for Kindergarten: No Man's Land | Sew Thrifty {www.sewthrifty.org}
Sewing for Kindergarten: No Man's Land | Sew Thrifty {www.sewthrifty.org}
Don’t give me that, you know it’s true.
He also loves to build, read, and play chess. I knew I wanted to be intentional about drawing out these interests of his, so I threw them all on a shirt for kindergarten.
Sewing for Kindergarten: No Man's Land | Sew Thrifty {www.sewthrifty.org}
The shirt is a raglan using Nap-time Creations free raglan pattern.  Have I told you I love a good free pattern?  The fabrics are a blue knit that a friend gave me and a gray knit with rectangles. I bought the gray knit at my local Bernina, but I can’t remember the brand.
For the graphics, I found some free silhouettes and uploaded them into my Cricut software. Then printed them out on white iron-on vinyl and adhered them to the shirt. I was totally inspired by this shirt to make something simple.
Sewing for Kindergarten: No Man's Land | Sew Thrifty {www.sewthrifty.org}
Yes, the only chess set we own is a Lord of the Rings set. 🙂
Question to your kindergartner: What have been the best and the worst parts so far?
Best part: Outside. Recess, it’s called recess.  I like going outside at home too.
Worst part: Don’t have one. Yet.
A man of few words. Except when he needs to go to bed and then he’ll talk your ear off. 😉
Sewing for Kindergarten: No Man's Land | Sew Thrifty {www.sewthrifty.org}
Be sure to check out Sewing Like Mad for all the other Sewing for Kindergarten looks!
Sewing for Kindergarten | Sew Thrifty {www.sewthrifty.org}

Radical Raglans – The Launch of Something New

This blog’s been a little sparse lately, but it’s not because I haven’t been sewing. I’ve actually been sewing more…and organizing a big photoshoot and launching a new product line in my Etsy shop! And today I get to reveal it to you all. I am SO excited!! (and my kids are too)

Radical Raglans by twelve2 (twelve2.etsy.com)

I’ve been posting sneak peaks on my Etsy shop’s Instagram account and even had a sneak peak sale. But today, TODAY, the Radical Raglans are now available for purchase in my shop. So go check ’em out!  Here are my kiddos sporting their custom-requested shirts.Radical Raglans by twelve2 (twelve2.etsy.com)

Radical Raglans by twelve2 (twelve2.etsy.com)

Radical Raglans by twelve2 (twelve2.etsy.com)

Radical Raglans by twelve2 (twelve2.etsy.com)

Radical Raglans by twelve2 (twelve2.etsy.com)(let’s all cry like Lioness. waaaaah!)

Radical Raglans by twelve2 (twelve2.etsy.com)

Radical Raglans by twelve2 (twelve2.etsy.com)(just needed Daddy. All is right in my world now)

Radical Raglans by twelve2 (twelve2.etsy.com)

If you love this look and don’t want to make one yourself, let me make one for ya! Use coupon code RADICAL in my shop until Sunday, January 31st for 20% off any Radical Raglan. (A little background on my shop: twelve2 is the name of the shop and it stands for Romans 12:2, which calls us to not be conformed to this world, but transform our minds to the will of God. For me, that means donating all the proceeds of every purchase to adoptive and missionary families. Currently, I’m raising money for a Nicaraguan missionary family to help them buy a used SUV and supporting several US adoptive families.)

If you’re a fellow sewist, and want to make it yourself, here are the details:

Pattern: Nap-time Creations FREE raglan pattern

Fabrics: Body is upcycled from old t-shirts, sleeves are various fabrics from Girl Charlee (aff link)

Graphic: Custom-built graphic from a friend’s text painting (but you could use any fun font) and various shapes. I used my Cricut Explore to cut iron-on vinyl and then adhered that to my shirt.

 

So, whatcha waiting for?! Go run and get you one…or make you one!

Radical Raglans by twelve2 (twelve2.etsy.com)

Thrifty Handmade Wedding: The Boy

I know, I know, my brother’s wedding was months ago, and you’ve probably forgotten that I even posted about my dress and my daughter’s outfit.  But we’re gearing up for another wedding this weekend, so I figured I had better get to posting about my son’s outfit before that wedding passes us by!

Thrifty Handmade Wedding, a refashion by Sew Thrifty

My brother’s wedding was this past summer and I knew for several months that I wanted to sew all the outfits for my family for the event. And, why not upcycle and use free patterns for everything too, right? Well, I was able to accomplish most of that. The pattern for my dress was free, the fabric for River’s dress and headband were free. Plus I found a dress that worked perfectly for Lioness, so I didn’t have to sew anything for her. But today, I’m focusing on Carpenter. We don’t get dressed up much at all, so this wedding was the perfect excuse for me to go crazy sewing something fancy for him. My son’s outfit turned out to be the best use of free patterns and upcycled materials.

Thrifty Handmade Wedding, a refashion by Sew ThriftyThe original shirt was my husband’s favorite shirt, but the collar was coming apart and just wasn’t ok for him to wear to work anymore. He hated to give it up, so I snuck it away years ago in hopes of using it for a refashion one day. And today is the day! For the vest, I thrifted a pair of dress pants. The original intent was to find a jacket, but the pattern I used didn’t fit the jackets I found, so I decided on pants. And, I found these for 50% off – only $2! I tried to keep the original welted pockets, but they were slightly too big, so I had to sew my own. You can see here how the cuffs from the original shirt were used for my son’s shirt. I loved that I didn’t have to sew all that. And the buttons were reused as well! I did have to improvise on the collar, since I couldn’t re-use that section and I was running out of fabric. Luckily I had some spare white cotton that I used to line the inside of the collar, since that section wouldn’t really get seen anyway and the outside of the collar came from the back of the original shirt.

Thrifty Handmade Wedding, a refashion by Sew Thrifty

The vest came together nicely, even though I wasn’t able to use any of the original pockets from the pants. I lined it with a khaki cotton someone had given me from their stash. Then I accented it with orange buttons. Yes, I went with orange.

Thrifty Handmade Wedding, a refashion by Sew Thrifty

The tie was made from a free pattern as well, along with scraps of fabric that was given to me. And his pants and shoes were given to me by a friend. His whole outfit came to a whopping $7, since I include the price of thread, buttons, and the clasp for the tie. Not too bad for a fancy wedding outfit. I might be able to afford to dress him up more often.Thrifty Handmade Wedding, a refashion by Sew Thrifty{so, how do you get a girl to like you?}

Thrifty Handmade Wedding, a refashion by Sew Thrifty

{ok, Mama, enough with all this wedding stuff, where’s the cake?!}

Here’s the breakdown:

Thrifty Handmade Wedding, a refashion by Sew Thrifty

Dress Shirt:
Pattern: Fishsticks Designs’ Everyday Camp Shirt (with length added)
Fabric: Upcycled men’s dress shirt + scrap of white cotton

Vest:
Pattern: MellySews’ free Holiday Vest (FREE)
Fabric: Upcycled pants and gifted khaki cotton for lining

Tie:
Pattern: Delia Creates’ Lil Mister Bow Tie (FREE)
Fabric: Blue and Green cotton from JoAnns (name unknown)
Light green cotton gifted from a friend

The other wedding looks:

Thrifty Handmade Wedding: The Mama
Thrifty Handmade Wedding: The Girl

Thrifty Handmade Wedding: The Girl

As I settle back into blogging after the month of sewing and saving, I’m still trying to figure out what I want for Sew Thrifty. At my core, I’m a business woman, but right now my heart is for my kiddos and homeschooling, and having this little blog on the side. Everything in me wants to care about growing this blog (stats, newsletter, great graphics and tons of pinned images), but I know that’s not for me right now. The other extreme is having an ultra-creative blog, but I’m really not that creative. I’m a stats nerd.

So, I’ve decided that I’m going to be me and have some creative and fun posts and then have some other posts more business-like (bullet points and graphs and all that fun stuff).  And I’m going to try and not care about what people think. But we all know that’s nearly impossible. Just sayin’.

Today I finally get to share with you the crazy story of River’s flower girl dress!! [It’s long, I don’t blame you for skimming or just looking at the amazing photos my husband snapped.]

Thrifty Handmade Wedding Flower Girl Dress {Sew Thrifty | www.sewthrifty.org} rustic, vintage, elegant, lace

Let me start by saying I really had no clue what I was going to make for her. I wanted to go along with the colors of the wedding, but not be overkill. I wanted it to be fancier (i.e. not knit) since I tend to always sew basic items. But nothing was inspiring me.

Until 10 days before we left for the wedding. That was when my brother called to ask if River would be the flower girl! I was so excited (then a bit stressed and freaking out) that I would get to make her a flower girl dress that inspiration was everywhere. And to top it off the colors of the wedding changed to neutral tones – browns, creams, khakis – with a rustic elegant theme. My initial desire to put some cowgirl boots on her was a bit too rustic for their taste, but I was able to settle on a look that I loved. Here was my inspiration dress.

Artsy Handmade Cute Flower Girl Dresses
Photo credit: Petit de Lin on Etsy (item no longer available)

Honestly, I look at this and think, wow, that’s a bit too Southern for me. But I actually like it. Plus, my friend has a paper pattern that is very similar to this, so I figured I could borrow it.

[Now, insert craziness]

My friend with the FREE pattern lives about 40 minutes away and we rarely see each other. This dress had to be completed in less than 10 days. We were leaving in 10 days, and I am not a fan of sewing late into the night the day before I leave on a big trip. So really it had to be made in about 3 days. Getting the free pattern from her just wasn’t going to work. But, she mentioned that they were on sale at my local Hancock Fabrics for $2. Sweet. I can handle $2 and a short trip to the store. Made it to the store, picked up the pattern, and headed home (without kids!). Later that night when I opened the pattern, I realize I had bought the child’s version instead of the toddler version!! Really?! They do that? I’m so spoiled with indie patterns that I just assume all patterns go from 2T-10 years. It’s late, the store is closed, there’s no going back to see if they even had the toddler version (and I’m pretty sure I bought the last one anyway). That’s when I realized the pattern is a bunch of rectangles with a bodice. I had already printed out the bodice to the (free!) Madeline Dress and it was very similar. Then I realized I could calculate my way through the pattern. [Squeal!] One of the biggest reasons I love sewing – all the math! After I accomplished all that I was so proud of myself and I could return the $2 pattern too. Boom.

Thrifty Handmade Wedding Flower Girl Dress {Sew Thrifty | www.sewthrifty.org} rustic, vintage, elegant, lace

Now for better part of the story – the fabric. A friend had gifted me boxes and boxes of her old fabric. Most was stuff I would never buy like linen, wovens, and (gasp) lace! After rummaging through it all, I found the exact fabrics I needed. The khaki cotton that I used for most of the dress was heavy enough for my girl not to damage it. The silky white fabric for the straps gave just enough elegance. And the lace….I could not have asked for a more perfect piece of fabric. The width of the lace was the exact amount to offer a slight gather. I did run out of the skinnier piece of lace, so I just attached it to the front instead of making a sash like the inspiration dress. And done, with 7 more days left to pack and finish Carpenter’s vest and dress shirt.

Thrifty Handmade Wedding Flower Girl Dress {Sew Thrifty | www.sewthrifty.org} rustic, vintage, elegant, lace

Then, once we got to the mountains River plainly decided she didn’t want to be the flower girl. Um…thanks. In the end, we were able to convince her to play a part in the ceremony, but once she did, she was outta there. [Thanks Aunt Jackie for watching her for the rest of the ceremony!]

Thrifty Handmade Wedding Flower Girl Dress {Sew Thrifty | www.sewthrifty.org} rustic, vintage, elegant, lace

Thrifty Handmade Wedding Flower Girl Dress {Sew Thrifty | www.sewthrifty.org} rustic, vintage, elegant, lace

After the ceremony, she was all about the flowers.

Thrifty Handmade Wedding Flower Girl Dress {Sew Thrifty | www.sewthrifty.org} rustic, vintage, elegant, lace

Thrifty Handmade Wedding Flower Girl Dress {Sew Thrifty | www.sewthrifty.org} rustic, vintage, elegant, lace

Thrifty Handmade Wedding Flower Girl Dress {Sew Thrifty | www.sewthrifty.org} rustic, vintage, elegant, laceAnd just today she mentioned wanting to be a flower girl. Seriously, girl? Gotta love ’em.

I don’t have a fancy little graphic for the time and cost. It took a while to gather all the materials, create my own pattern, get the fit right, and play around with the look at each stage, so it wasn’t a fast sew. However, the price was right – just about FREE. Thread probably cost 50 cents or so. All the fabric was handed down to me and the pattern was free too. And her headband (which she thankfully wore through the ceremony) was free too. I hot glued flowers from the same fabric as her dress and some other mint green that was gifted to me to some lace my mother-in-law gave me ages ago.

Thrifty Handmade Wedding {Sew Thrifty | www.sewthrifty.org}

Thrifty Handmade Wedding {Sew Thrifty | www.sewthrifty.org}

Thrifty Handmade Wedding {Sew Thrifty | www.sewthrifty.org}If you’re looking for my dress, that’s here. Baby girl only got a headband, and I’ll have Carpenter’s outfit up soon!

 

 

 

Upcycled: Raglan for Boys

Do you ever realize how many free or event-related shirts you amass over the years? Today’s tutorial will show you  how to make use of those shirts for your kids.

This post is the second of my versions of  the Raglan Shirt Pattern by Nap-Time Creations.  You can view my girl’s version of the raglan here.

{Disclosure: These are not our patterns, and we don’t claim any rights to them. They are kindly offered for free by the pattern designers. The patterns and tutorials must be obtained at the pattern designers’ sites.}

Upcycled Boy Raglan {Sew Thrifty | www.sewthrifty.org}

Both the gray and lime fabrics came from shirts with over-sized graphics. These are very common with shirts you can receive for donating money, company shirts, or team shirts. Some of these shirts are sentimental, but others are just filling up your closet…or your trash pile. Now, there’s something you can do with them!

Upcycled Raglan for Boys {Sew Thrifty| www.sewthrifty.org}

This shirt was a friend’s that she and her whole family had worn in support of March for Babies. An awesome cause, but she didn’t need 5 of these matching shirts past the day of the walk. She kindly packed up this one and many others and delivered them free to my house. Free fabric! Free delivery! I have the best friends.

Upcycled Raglan for Boys {Sew Thrifty| www.sewthrifty.org}

Because the graphic on the back was so large, I could only use this shirt for the front in the size I needed. There was still some leftover on the back that I’ll use for other small projects.Upcycled Raglan for Boys {Sew Thrifty| www.sewthrifty.org}

As you can see above, I folded my t-shirt and lined up the bottom of the pattern to the bottom of the shirt. Since I didn’t have to bother with hemming the shirt, I could have slid the pattern piece down to account for not hemming. However, I like longer shirts (makes them last longer on my constantly-growing kiddos), so I kept the pattern piece as pictured above to gain an extra inch or so. Upcycled Raglan for Boys {Sew Thrifty| www.sewthrifty.org}

For the sleeve, I did slide the pattern piece off the edge of the t-shirt’s original sleeve. I wanted a short-sleeve shirt and nothing longer than that.

Upcycled Raglan for Boys {Sew Thrifty| www.sewthrifty.org}

I did the same cutting process for the back of the shirt and cut off the neckband of this gray shirt to use for my final raglan.

Also, since I used the original hem of the shirts, when I serged my shirt together, I ended up with a tail of additional thread. (This will also happen if you’re using a sewing machine, although if you back stitch your seams should stay put.) When using a serger, I use this method to keep my thread tails from coming apart:

Finishing Serger Hems {Sew Thrifty | www.sewthrifty.org}

 

 

And now the shirt is completely done and ready to be worn!Upcycled Lime Raglan and Baggies {Sew Thrifty | www.sewthrifty.org}

Upcycled Lime Raglan and Baggies {Sew Thrifty | www.sewthrifty.org}

Upcycled Lime Raglan and Baggies {Sew Thrifty | www.sewthrifty.org}

And I know you saw those awesome shorts up there! Don’t worry, those will be coming next week.

Here’s the breakdown:

Upcycled Boy's Raglan {Sew Thrifty | www.sewthrifty.org}

Check out what Feather’s Flights is up to today with her peasant style tunic!

Upcycled: Learn to Sew Your Kid's Wardrobe. A Series by Feather's Flights (feathersflights.com) and Sew Thrifty (sewthrifty.org)

Have you upcycled any garments for your kids? Tag #upcycledkid on Instagram so we can see all the awesomeness you are creating! Or share a link in the comments.

Upcycled: Colorblocked Muscle Tee

Today I’m going to share with you my first of many projects! I will be transforming two adult tees into a tank for my son – all for less than 25 cents.

But first, have you seen what upcycling can save you? And how you can get the most out of your material?
Colorblocked Muscle Tee {Sew Thrifty | www.sewthrifty.org}

{Disclosure: These are not our patterns, and we don’t claim any rights to them. They are kindly offered for free by the pattern designers. The patterns and tutorials must be obtained at the pattern designers’ sites.}

Using Fishsticks Designs’ free Tank pattern, I mashed up two adult shirts to make this fun new one! The stumbling block I came across was that the graphic I wanted to keep from the original shirt was too close to the edge of the tank’s pattern piece. If I had cut up the original shirt, I would have sewed the graphic right into the seams, losing the look I was aiming for. Color blocking to the rescue! If you’ve ever had this same problem, read on to see how you can keep those fun (maybe even sentimental?) graphics from shirts past….

I snagged this long sleeve maroon shirt from my husband’s wardrobe long ago knowing Carpenter would love it one day. (Don’t worry, my husband gave me full permission!) And, today is the day!  I showed him the graphic on the back and he said, “Bam! Cars!” He is not one to shy away from crashing, smashing, and all sorts of collisions; this shirt fits him well. 🙂

Upcycled Colorblock Tank {Sew Thrifty | www.sewthrifty.org}

You can see below that if I used only this maroon shirt, I would have cut right along the side of the graphic from the back of the shirt. And, I couldn’t move the pattern piece up, since there’s no more shirt to move to!

Upcycled Colorblock Tank {Sew Thrifty | www.sewthrifty.org}

Luckily, I had a matching shirt in my stash of clothes to upcycle (it might just be larger than my fabric stash, but who’s counting?). So, I decided the best solution was to color-block the two shirts. Instead of making a new pattern piece or printing off another one, I simply folded down the piece, making sure the pattern matched up on the fold (this will ensure that the angle is at 90 degrees, and your pattern pieces will be perfectly horizontal).

Upcycled Colorblock Tank {Sew Thrifty | www.sewthrifty.org}(This is the top half of the pattern piece used for my yellow shirt)

You’ll then have the other part of the pattern to be used for the maroon/graphic part of the shirt:Upcycled Colorblock Tank {Sew Thrifty | www.sewthrifty.org}

First, I took the top part of the pattern piece and laid it on my yellow shirt to be upcycled. You can see the pin on the right – that is marking the fold in my pattern piece. I will add a seam allowance of approximately 3/8″ (or 1 cm) below that pin.

Upcycled Colorblock Tank {Sew Thrifty | www.sewthrifty.org}

The top of my tank all cut out – the pin still in place, marking the original pattern piece, and you can see where I added seam allowance all along the bottom. (I repeated this step for the front pattern piece of my tank.)

Upcycled Colorblock Tank {Sew Thrifty | www.sewthrifty.org}

Next, I prepared the bottom sections of my tank. (I’m showing you the front piece, but I did the same process for the back of the tank as well.) Using the bottom piece of my pattern, I placed it on top of my original shirt, making sure it did not cover up the details I was trying to save. I marked around the pattern piece with chalk to double check my work.

Upcycled Colorblock Tank {Sew Thrifty | www.sewthrifty.org}Upcycled Colorblock Tank {Sew Thrifty | www.sewthrifty.org}Looks good!

You’ll want to add the seam allowance to the top of this section of the shirt (as you’ll be sewing this piece and the top piece together). I, however, didn’t have any space to add a seam allowance, so I simply added some extra length to account for what I needed.

Now I have my main pieces cut out:

Upcycled Colorblock Tank {Sew Thrifty | www.sewthrifty.org}To complete the colorblocking, simply zig-zag stitch (width = .5, length = 2.5-3) or serge the top and bottom pieces to each other. Do this for both the front and back pieces. Then, you’ll have the front and back pieces just like in the original pattern.

For the neckband and armband, I love to use the ribbing from the original shirts. Since I have two shirts, there’s plenty of ribbing for both the armband and neckband. I like to cut as close as possible to the seam to get the ribbing off the neckline of the original shirt. You can save a little more fabric by seam ripping these necklines out, but, whew, it’s a job! Trust me, I’ve done it. It’s a whole lot simpler to just cut out, even if you do end up with a slightly skinnier piece of ribbing.Upcycled Colorblock Tank {Sew Thrifty | www.sewthrifty.org}

Upcycled Colorblock Tank {Sew Thrifty | www.sewthrifty.org}

From here, I followed the directions from the original pattern. Now my son has an awesome, unique, pocket tank. Thanks so much Bonnie for an awesome FREE tank pattern! Be sure to go check out the Tank pattern, available in sizes 12m-14!Colorblock Muscle Tee {Sew Thrifty | www.sewthrifty.org{Colorblock Muscle Tee {Sew Thrifty | www.sewthrifty.org}

Here’s the breakdown:

Colorblocked Muscle Tee {Sew Thrifty | ww.sewthrifty.org}

And be sure to hop on over to Feather’s Flights to see her cap sleeve cardigan and cap sleeve tee!
Upcycled: Learn to Sew Your Kid's Wardrobe. A Series by Feather's Flights (feathersflights.com) and Sew Thrifty (sewthrifty.org)Have you upcycled any garments for your kids? Tag #upcycledkid on Instagram so we can see all the awesomeness you are creating! Or share a link in the comments.

See ya Later (Alligator)! {Kid’s Clothes Week: Days 2 & 3}

When I first found out about Kid’s Clothes Week’s theme WILD Things, I had just taken my crew to the local zoo. And Carpenter was all about the alligators….that we didn’t even see. And I’m not even sure we have alligators at our zoo, which is hilarious because we have alligators in the water about 1 mile from our house. Yes, I’ve seen them. And yes, I’m terrified. And yes, Carpenter wanted to get closer. Um, no.

But, the dude likes alligators and that was his animal of choice, so here we go! The idea in my head was to combine pieces of old t-shirts to create the stripes of an alligator’s belly for the front of the tank. Initially, I was going to make it an ombre style look, but then realized I just didn’t have the proper greens to make it work. So, I found these two olive greens that were slightly different and decided to stick with just those two to make the stripes.  Then added a pocket because Carpenter requests pockets. Always.

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For the back, I did the stripes vertically to mimic the back of an alligator, and then the shirt just took on a mind of its own. I added the graphic “See you later (alligator)” and pieced the whole tank together. And THEN, the tank was begging for me to really make the back look like alligator ridges, so I cut little triangles all down the center of the back. Phew. Done.

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{CHOMP!}

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And he likes it!

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See you later! (seriously, come back tomorrow for my last little WILD thing of the week)

I used FishSticks Designs FREE Tank pattern, some leftover gray ribbing, a scrap of black from a Target jersey sheet, and 2 old green t-shirts.

Here’s the breakdown:

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Garments of Kids Clothes Weeks’ Past

It’s like the ghosts of Christmas past, except not really. Anyway…since it always takes longer to sew and blog about something than just to sew it, I’m going to preview this Kid’s Clothes Week with some garments I’ve sewn up in previous seasons. And here’s to hoping I’m able to make and blog throughout the week!

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Fall 2014 {Theme: Storybook}

My kids needed clothes during this KCW, so I didn’t follow the theme. I had big plans for this week and didn’t achieve all of them, but I did make 2 pairs of pants and 1 top for Carpenter, and 1 top for River.

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 Treasure Pocket Pants from Sewing for Boys: 24 Projects to Create a Handmade Wardrobe*. Fabric from an old pair of khakis and rocket fabric.

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 Deer Bimaa with fabric from Girl Charlee *

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 Viking Hoodie. Pattern from Ottobre (4/2014) , fabric from Kitschy Coo

Winter 2015 {Theme: Upcycle}

I was so excited about this theme, I could hardly handle it…and then I got carpal tunnel half-way through the week. I was still able to muscle out 3 shirts for Carpenter and some footed pants for Lioness though.KCWPast-6

Raw-Edged Raglan from Sewing for Boys: 24 Projects to Create a Handmade Wardrobe*.  Fabric was a white t-shirt and a pink Target jersey sheet.

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Snap Button v-neck (without the snaps, ha) from Ottobre 1/2013. Fabric from a men’s XL shirt and teal jersey scrap.

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Another Raw-Edged Raglan from Sewing for Boys: 24 Projects to Create a Handmade Wardrobe.*  Fabric upcycled from two Old Navy shirts.

As you can see, I’m a bit in love with the Sewing for Boys book and Ottobre too. In the coming months I’m going to share with you about how I chose and what matters to me when it comes to patterns.

Now, here’s to a productive Kid’s Clothes Week!

Project Run & Play: Star Student Muscle Tee

When the Project Run & Play challenge for February was announced, I was just about beside myself!  The tutorial, from Living with Punks, was the Mademoiselle Muscle Tee. I LOVE muscle tees! One of the first items I started sewing for my son was a muscle tee. So, I knew I was going to create a look for my son, and tailor it to fit him perfectly.

My son LOVES to read (seriously, when he was a 1 year old he would sit still longer than most 3 year olds if someone was reading to him). He also loves school and is very smart, picking up concepts faster than I can even comprehend.  I wanted to create a look that was centered around the idea of his big Brain muscle, but also look cool. We’re pretty big nerds in our family (Doctor Who, anyone? And I may have an advanced degree in applied statistics. Oh, and my husband is a gamer and a programmer. Yea, nerds.) But nerds can look cool too, right?
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Since my son is in preschool at home, school looks like the woods, the beach, the kitchen, and anywhere else where we can explore, get messy, and learn by doing.
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The shirt was created to celebrate my son’s accomplishments. Preschool is about fun and play and encouraging learning of all kinds. Stars are a great way to show kids that they did a good job (plus I love a good star fabric, so it was a no-brainer).
I used a raw-edge raglan look for the shoulders and kept the sleeve edges raw as well. The star was appliqued on with an orange contrast stitching. The gray fabric was upcycled from an old men’s t-shirt. I even cut out the neckline from the men’s shirt and cut it down to fit this muscle tee. All fabrics except the gray were from Girl Charlee (aff link).
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These shorts are supposed to mimic a piece of paper – stripes with thicker sections in between. I was going to place letters on the shorts, but once I got the look together, I just loved it this way – nice and simple. These shorts are made from a ponte knit with scrap ribbing for the pocket outlines. The cording is taken from the bags a Target sheet comes in {FREE!}.
And here’s the breakdown:
Muscle Tee:
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Green Baggies:

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(You wanna piece of me?)

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(Just kidding, I’m really very sweet)

Now, go check out all the other amazing entries this month!

 

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