DIY PROJECT: SIMPLE APPLE CHARM BRACELET

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Once upon a time, I really enjoyed stringing beads together to make cute and awesome bracelets on simple stretch cord. But then I realized I had too many crafts and hobbies and reluctantly pared down my hobbies to three: digital scrapbooking, crocheting, and sewing. Goodbye, paints and Christmas ornaments — for a few years, I painted and donated Christmas ornaments to friends and nursing home residents. I bid farewell to my bracelet supplies — ended up handing my supply over to Charlie’s sister.

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Sometimes I think about taking up jewelry making whenever I visit a craft store and accidentally walk down the jewelry aisles. But then I look at the all the supplies to create beautiful jewelry and immediately change my mind. Anyway, I volunteered to string together some cute apple charm bracelets for the apple orchard this season. The owner had received some DIY apple charm bracelets and had asked me to make them to sell at the shop. Of course, I said yes.

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Ugh. I honestly believe I dropped my first bracelet five or six times before I successfully tied the final knot. I am completely OK with my long-ago decision to give up bracelet making because I am swearing up a storm this time around. The pre-cut stretch elastic included in the DIY package was VERY difficult to work with because my knots wouldn’t stay knotted. Ugh! Even with a dot of glue, my knots came undone and the beads flew everywhere.

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I remember happily using a certain stretch cord all those years ago, and I found the same package at a craft store a few days. Yay! Considering young girls will probably eye the cute little bracelets, I chose the sparkly stretch cord. What a difference the new stretch cord makes!!! I whipped out six or seven bracelets in an hour. I was given some leeway, meaning I didn’t need to stick to the package pattern and could create different patterns.

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An hour later, I used the rest of the beads to create another six bracelets, and I’m pretty happy with how the bracelets turned out. I hope people who shop at the orchard store will find them charming and buy a few. However, I don’t plan to pick up the hobby of jewelry making any time soon. This project scratched the jewelry making itch and gave me a good reason to stay out the jewelry aisles at the craft stores.

DIY PROJECT: FITTED SHEET STRAP FIX

One of many pet peeves is when the corners of a fitted sheet ride up over the mattress. Before heading to bed or after waking up in the morning, I need to tug the corners down because I don’t like the white mattress corner peeking out. The solution — adding elastic straps to the corners — has always been hanging around in the back of my mind, but I was unsure whether it would actually work.
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Thanks to the interweb and Pinterest, my solution is just fine since I’m not the only person with the genius idea. Some stores sell elastic straps with clips on the end, but I fear the clips wouldn’t be strong enough to hold the corners overnight. I have the same fear about sewing elastic straps, which is why I zigzagged the crap out of the elastic to the fitted sheet.
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The entire process was simple and quick (my favorite kind of process!). Sort of. I read a few tutorials to make sure I was on the right track. The only issue I encountered was how far from the corner do I sew the elastic end? Four inches? Twelve inches? Since the various elastic straps measure 12 inches, I figured six inches from the corner would be OK. None of the tutorials gave a measurement so I guessed.
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Not that Charlie and I toss and turn viciously during the night, I wanted to make sure the elastic didn’t pop out. So, I used the zigzag stitch heavily on all the corners. Again, the process was simple and quick, and I couldn’t wait to run the sheet through the washer and dryer and throw it back on the bed. I second guessed my work as I tucked the corners underneath the mattress.

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Instead of six inches should I have placed the elastic 12 inches away from the corner? The elastic straps seemed too close to the edges and corner. However, all my fears and worries disappeared the next morning when all four corners were still tucked under the mattress! Ignore all the cat hair (Riley likes to sleep on Charlie’s side of the bed) and look at the beauty of the tucked corner. Squee!

REFASHION 7: MY FIRST CIRCLE SKIRT

With a ton of shirts in my refashion bin, I need to really work on whittling down that number. So, I pulled four different blue shirts and cut them into pieces to form a circle. Once the pieces were cut, I simply sewed them together, creating a beautiful circle, and added 2-inch black elastic to the waistband. Easy peasy.

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What I did:

  • found four different blue shirts that complemented each other
  • cut the shirts into angled strips
  • trimmed the waist area
  • added 2-inch black elastic
  • twirled around in the skirt longer than necessary

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REFASHION 6: A SWEATER SKIRT TO FINALLY LOVE

I was in the process of trying to save the grey cowl sweater by turning it into a better sweater, but I made some minor errors. Oops. When I removed the cowl from the sweater, I didn’t like the new neckline and couldn’t figure out how to save it. Instead of putting a little more effort into the save, I decided to turn the sweater into a sweater skirt.

Years ago when I first started refashioning, I destroyed a good number of my husband’s old sweaters trying to refashion a skirt. Needless to say, I failed over and over and over until I ran out of old sweaters. About a year ago, I successfully refashioned a sweater into a skirt, but then I decided the skirt was terrible.

After throwing the green sweater skirt back into my refashion bin, I no longer had sweater skirt. Anyway, all I needed was black elastic and about 30 minutes to turn a sweater into a skirt. I’m pretty happy with the results, and I can’t wait to wear it! Yay!

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What I did:

  • removed the cowl neck
  • realized I didn’t like the new neckline
  • could not figure out a quick fix to the neckline
  • decided to turn the sweater into a skirt
  • snipped off the body of the sweater from armpit to armpit
  • added 3-inch black elastic to the waistband

REFASHION: PRETTY PURPLE SKIRTS

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My dad generously gave me two beautiful purple curtain panels a few months ago, and I thought, “I could probably use a cute purple skirt.” But how many purple skirts do I really need? Just one. However, my two younger sisters each have a daughter — so, how about mother-daughter matching skirts? Thankfully, my nieces love anything pink, purple, and super cute.

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MY SKIRT: ADELLY MARCH 2015

In about an hour, I completed one skirt (mine!) and almost finished Krissy’s skirt (just missing the elastic from the waistband). The curtain panels had a small casing at the top (for the rod, I guess), and a huge casing at the bottom (the hem?), which meant I needed to insert elastic, sew a side seam and hem the bottom of the skirt. Easy peasy.

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ADDED FANCY STITCHING NEAR THE HEM OF MY SKIRT. SO CUTE!

About ten minutes with Krissy and Tova, I had their measurements for the elastic waistband and length ideas. Tova was especially excited at the thought of having a matching skirt with Shelby and wearing a matching headband (which I needed to figure out). For extra cuteness, I added dotted ribbon to the bottom hem of Tova and Shelby’s skirts.

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TOVA’S SKIRT: ARICELLY AUGUST 2015

While Tova’s skirt is pretty, I could’ve done a better job and made it more poofy and twirly. I might make her a second — hopefully better — skirt when I have a chance. I just need to figure out where I stored the stash of purple curtains because I have the tendency to leave all my hobby stuff laying around the living room. My intentions are good, trying to keep the space clean.

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SHELBY’S SKIRT: ATHALLY AUGUST 2015

Without knowing Becky and Shelby’s measurements, I pushed the purple skirt project to a back burner and hoped to complete it whenever I saw Becky and Shelby. Out of sight out of mind. However, my back burners are becoming a little too crowded, and I finally asked Becky for skirt measurements. Even with the numbers, I’m worried the skirts won’t fit.

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SHELBY TRYING ON HER NEW SKIRT

I’m pretty sure I could still flub the skirts somehow. Hopefully, I can find the stupid stash somewhere before the end of the year to finally complete Becky’s skirt. I wanted to publish this post until all the skirts were completed, but the draft post has been lingering around since March. I promise to post a picture of Becky’s skirt and a group photo of matching skirts!

REFASHION: TWO SKIRTS FOR TOVA

With a determined effort to reduce my refashion piles, I quickly turned two more pillowcases into two skirts for my niece, Tova. As much as I love refashioning pillowcases into skirts, fingers crossed I found all the extra pillowcases in my stashes. I had one remnant of a grey floral pillowcase from Shelby’s skirt, and unfortunately, I needed a teeny bit more fabric for the casing.

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So, I used one tiny last remaining piece from a white pillowcase to finish off the casing for the waist. After hemming the bottom of the skirt and inserting the elastic in the casing, Tova’s grey floral skirt was completed! Yay! I just hope she can find a shirt to match the skirt because I personally would wear a nice black tee. For a girl who loves pink and purple, I wonder if she has a black tee.

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From the first light grey pillowcase I made a cute little wrap skirt for Tova, but it had some minor issues. Instead of fixing the problems, I made a simple elastic waist skirt from the second light grey pillowcase. I cut the pillowcase to Tova’s preferred length, and I opened the cuff of the pillowcase to insert the elastic. Because the fabric is knit jersey NO HEMMING NECESSARY! Yay!

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With the remaining fabric I created a matching skirt for my other niece, Shelby. Once I had my hands on Tova’s imperfect skirt, I used some of the fabric to create faux drawstrings for the new skirts. All that’s left is Tova and Shelby need to hang out more often and wear their matching skirts at the same time. Fingers crossed my measurements were correct.

REFASHION: SKIRTS FOR SHELBY

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FROM THE LLY COLLECTION: ATHALLY AUGUST 15

I love making skirts for my 3-year-old niece, Shelby, and what I love more is Shelby loves wearing skirts! Yay! With old bed sheets taking up a ton of room in my stash, I decided matching skirts for my nieces and my sisters. Once I made one simple skirt for Miss Shelby, I needed to make more. The skirts aren’t fancy by any means — simple elastic waist — but I really enjoy making tiny little skirts.

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FROM THE LLY COLLECTION: CECILLY AUGUST 15

I simply added a purple dotted ribbon to the purple skirt (fabric was a former curtain that hung in my dad’s study) and elastic. Simple but yet so cute. I’m not 100% in love with my other niece’s matching skirt because I know I can do a better job. I kind of whipped that skirt together because Tova was kind of impatient about adding a purple skirt to her wardrobe.

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Ugh! My old skirt before I refashioned it into two cute skirts for two cute little girls.

The yellow floral skirt with the pink floral hem was supposed to be a wrap skirt for me, but I wasn’t super happy with the end product. After many revisions, I gave up and turned the skirt into two skirts — one for Shelby and the other for Tova. The skirt looks so much better on teeny tiny girls instead of a 40-year-old woman with short stubby legs who isn’t thrilled with the skirt anyway.

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FROM THE LLY COLLECTION: DELLY AUGUST 15

I had some fun with the cute yellow lace skirt made from an old bed sheet that my parents kept from the 1970s. Because the sheet was a little see-through-ish, I created a layered lace skirt using my lace stash and remnants from the other four skirts I made from the sheet. I couldn’t complete the skirt in one night since I had to forage for scraps from the other skirts.

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And, finally, Shelby’s last skirt was made from another unsuccessful skirt of mine and a remnant from a pillowcase. I cut the contrasting fabrics into three- to four-inch strips and sewed the strips to together — gray, white, gray, etc. From there, I hemmed the skirt, created a casing, inserted a piece of elastic, and stitched the side seam. Done!

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FROM THE LLY COLLECTION: GILLY AUGUST 15

I like the gray-white skirt, but if I do something like that again, I’ll probably cut the strips narrower. I think the skirt will look adorable on Shelby, but the skirt pattern still needs a little fine tuning. Even though I don’t take a ton of time making skirts for myself, I felt I was able to whip out Shelby’s skirts a little faster. Not to mention, her skirts are a ton cuter than mine.  🙂

NEW SKIRTS: CAILLY AND CECILLY MAY 15

I have the best intentions before I walk into a fabric store. “Get what you need, Jennifer. Just get what you NEED.” But my best intentions quickly disappear once I see clearance signs or 80% to 90% off signs. How in the world can I pass up pretty green dot fabric when it’s on clearance for $2 a yard? The answer: I can’t. I have a weakness for dots, cuteness, and clearance.

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CAILLY MAY 15

For less than $3 (I can’t remember the exact price), I picked up a yard of super cute green dot fabric that I knew would look super cute as a flouncy little skirt. After a few hours during one evening, I had a really cute green dot skirt that really needed to be ironed (not my favorite task to do). Other than a white shirt, what other color would match this skirt?

During a new pillowcase project (another post for another day), I accidentally flubbed two pillowcases. I don’t think I’m a perfectionist, but I didn’t want to use the flubbed cases and be reminded of my glaring mistake. My lovely head needs to rest on a nice pillowcase. Instead of fixing the two pillowcases, I decided to turn them into a skirt!

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CECILLY MAY 15

With two flubbed pillowcases in my hands and less than an hour later, I had a nice pencil skirt. Surprisingly, I thought the pillowcase fabric looked super nice as a skirt. Not super surprising, Charlie chuckled at the pillowcase skirt and could not promise to not point out my pretty pencil skirt matched our current pillowcases. Hmmmmmmm.

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PART 1: THE VEE COLLECTION

Charlie’s grandmother recently rummaged through her wardrobe and donated a ton of stuff, but she had a few pieces she couldn’t quite give up. Luckily, she knew I refashioned clothes and hoped I would be interested in the few remaining pieces. I saw potential in some of the remaining clothes and snagged them. I love the idea of Charlie and I using stuff his grandparents once kept.

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The two easiest refashions — VEE ONE and VEE TWO — were refashioned from two skirts too small and too long for me. I kept the original hem on both skirts, hacked off a little more than 12 inches from the top of the skirts, and created a new waistband. I might fiddle around the waistband on the floral skirt — VEE ONE — because it feels a little big.

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I also snagged some old plain blankets from Charlie’s grandmother and plan to use them in a simple quilt. I think the blanket would be too heavy and clunky for a quillow. However, my refashion projects have been my main focus these past few months, putting the quillow and quilt projects on the back burner for now. Who needs a quilt in the summer anyway?

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REFASHION: BETHELLY APRIL 15

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BETHELLY MAY 15: I picked up this pretty little shirt for $4 on clearance, knowing it would never look good on me as a shirt. I knew I could easily refashion the shirt into a beautiful skirt.

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LOST: A LITTLE BODKIN: Has anyone seen my little cute bodkin? Until I buy another bodkin or locate my only bodkin, I had to create a temporary bodkin to insert elastic into the casing.

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JUST CHILLING: I love this cute and adorable label for the back of the skirt! How cute is that turtle? I used the shirt’s sleeves to create a casing for the waistband.

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SO PRETTY AND BEAUTIFUL! The shirt had a slight low-high hem, but I flipped the shirt around so that the higher hemline would be in the front and the slightly lower hem would in the back.

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