Sunday, January 24, 2010

Made: Recycled T-Shirt Halter Dresses

Determined to put both some new patterns and my new serger to work, I wrecked myself on sleep this weekend.  As in, I was having such a good time sewing that I managed to stay up until almost 6 am on Saturday morning.  And would you look at that, it's 4:15 in the morning now on Sunday.  Yes, I'm a mom of young children and no longer a college student.  I'm gonna be a mess tomorrow today. 

Ah, but it was so much fun!

I had been playing around with my new scissors and cut apart 5 t-shirts a few weekends ago.  As you may recall, my effort at making them into something new didn't really pan out at that time.  But armed with my new serger (and a free weekend), I put myself to the test.  I had purchased a Recycled T-Shirt Halter Dress Pattern from lilblueboo and was thrilled that I finally had a worthy reason to dip into my giant T stash.

Sidebar: In high school, college, and through most of my 20s I was a major hoarder collector of Ts.  All kinds of em.  I know a lot of people out there do this so it's kind of lame to say it was my thing.  Except it kinda was my thing.  My hands down best find was in a Goodwill back in college: a navy blue tee with neon green writing of the W.C. Fields quote, "Never cheat an honest man; never give a sucker an even break, and never wise up a chump."  Such a completely random thing.  Don't know who would've owned the shirt previous or where the world they would have gotten it in the first place, but I was glad to find it.  To be honest, I didn't even realize it was a W.C. Fields thing until I was watching the old movie it's from with my dad a few years ago and recognized the quote.  End of Sidebar.

Anyway, I completely took over the entirety of the downstairs.  Our dining room table became (as Mr. Skooks dubbed it) my sewing factory.  What he actually said was, "You used to just sew.  Now you've got a whole sewing factory set up downstairs.  It's kind of taking over."  He was absolutely correct.  Here's a small peek:

Pretty much it was a huge mess awesome.

I was able to complete 2 dresses throughout the course of the day.  I had to take plenty of breaks what with nursing time with Kee-ku and playtime with Little Miss, but on the whole, these didn't take very long.  My second one took about 3 hours, and I wasn't trying to speed through it.  I bet I could cut the time down the more I do them.  The pattern was really clear and very easy!  I do not sew clothes, and this was a breeze.  Being able to serge the seams together was just the icing on the cake.

Here's my first attempt (I used 2 shirts that I had no real attachment to.  FYI, normally I'm not a fan of children's clothing that advertises companies or characters.  I figured I'd be ok with it if this turned out to be a colossal failure):

And this one I made after Little Miss tried on the first one and immediately proclaimed, "You're a very good dress-maker-girl!  Can you make me one in green now?"  Ah, youthful enthusiasm.

I made a few mistakes on each (nothing major, but things I would watch out for next time) and just stuck to the straightforward pattern without adding my own embellishments (other than adding the pockets which is a variation written into the pattern).  You've got to crawl before you can walk, right?

When lilblueboo was running her fundraiser for Three Angels Haiti earlier this week, I bought 3 more of her patterns.  This one worked up so easy, I can't wait to give the others a try too!


Ronni and Sean January 24, 2010 at 9:39 AM  

Ah! I love them! Great job :)

Trisha January 25, 2010 at 7:38 AM  

Very cute - love the green and pink one! (And I have one of those sewing factories in our living room, lol.)

Christina Lee January 25, 2010 at 9:31 AM  

wow impressed --they're great!

Ashley January 25, 2010 at 12:07 PM  

These are SO great! Your sewing area looks like mine ;) Sometimes I think I need a warehouse though to hold my mess....

Skooks January 25, 2010 at 12:46 PM  

Thanks everyone! I said it once, I'll say it again. These were so much fun to do!

Trisha and Ashley - This is why I need a sewing room! It took me FOREVER to clean this all up when I was done. I may have spread myself out a bit *too* much. Which I guess is my prerogative. It is my house after all! If only it didn't make for kind of an unsafe (and completely chaotic) environment for everyone else in my house.

Unknown January 26, 2010 at 12:01 AM  

Cute, cute! Love them. Thanks for sharing!

Kathy January 26, 2010 at 8:56 PM  

Those dresses are darling - great job!!!
and YES, you definitely need a sewing room - but I'm preaching to the choir, right! Aaahh, but someday..........

Nancy February 8, 2010 at 7:53 PM  

Well done! These are so cute. Good luck with carving out a sewing room... but meantime your dining room is working.

Skooks February 8, 2010 at 8:14 PM  

Nancy, I know! The only real downside to spreading myself out in the dining room is the fact that it is the *first* thing you see when you walk in the house. I don't like having a mess around, and I try not to be more than 15 minutes away from making the house suitable for visitors. But this kind of creativity can not be contained or cleaned in 15 minutes! I've got to figure out some new way to set things up down there . . .

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