Archive for April 2012

Tea Towel Skirts for Girls

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A few weeks back I was lucky enough to do a guest post on one of my favorite blogs, Chic on a Shoestring. Here is the post and my tutorial for those who may have missed it! Hope y'all had a good weekend!

I write the blog, Days of Chalk and Chocolate, which is mostly about my adventures DIY, decorating, crafting, and mothering all while on a teeny budget.  Sometimes I throw a little elementary teaching in as a topic as well!  I hope you'll stop by and visit me sometime to see some of my other thrifty projects.  Here's a sneak peak of some reader favorites!

Fall Ruffle Wreath
Love Note Pillows
Stuffed Artichoke Tutorial
Chair Tutorial

I just started sewing this year and I'm trying my hand at simple skirts for my daughters. Recently I made them matching skirts out of tea towels! 

I was browsing in Home Goods the other day and found two tea towels in the prettiest red, pink, and white floral fabric. I grabbed them because they were the only two there and didn't know what I would do with them but I knew it would be something!  I paid $6 for both.  My daughter Molly is always asking to dress like her sister, Ellie (she thinks it makes them twins despite the fact that Molly is 5 and Ellie is 21 months but whatever!) so I decided the towels would make perfect matching skirts!

The towels!  Aren't they so pretty?

I studied a bunch of tutorials I found online and got the gist of what I would need to do.

This is how I did Molly's skirt.  Molly needed her skirt to be 12 inches to hit just above her knee and has a waist of 19.5 inches. I didn't bother measuring the width because I was just using the width of the towels.  Molly's skirt would have the striped band at the bottom but it was too wide so before I cut the fabric I folded the band up and stitched. This became my new bottom and I measured from there.  Ellie's skirt was the remaining fabric on the other side of the towels. The lengths just worked out perfectly for me!

I then cut the towels so I had 2-13.5 inch pieces ( 12 + 1.5 inches to account for the seams).

I sewed each side seam, right sides together, to make the tube of the skirt.  Then I pressed the whole thing so it was nice and smooth.  Press open your seams as well.  Keep it inside out.

The best part of using the towels is that you don't have to worry about finishing any of the edges.  They are already hemmed for you.  All you have to do is the waist band!  Sweet! 

Fold over the cut edge about a 1/4 inch-1/2inch and press. Then fold it again, this time wide enough to fit the size elastic you are using. Press again.

I sewed the waist band as closely to the edge as I possibly could.

Do not sew completely around!  I left a 1 inch opening in the waistband through which I could shimmy the elastic.

Well, since Chic on a Shoestring is a thrifty site I won't be embarrassed to tell you I didn't even use real clothing elastic. I had two never used elastic headbands in my vanity drawer for ages so I used those!  Luckily they were large enough for my daughters' waists.   I cut the elastic about 2 inches less than their waist measurements.

I fastened a safety pin to the end and used that to guide the elastic through. Learn from my mistakes. You'll save money on Band-Aids if you buy good quality safety pins instead of cheaping out with dollar store pins which actually bend. Who ever heard of a safety pin bending when you close it?  Well, I suffered so my girls would be adorable because that's the kind of mother I am.

I used a zig-zag stitch to secure the ends of the elastic and I ran it twice so that it wouldn't come apart. 

Then I hand stitched the waist band closed. DONE!  Well, not really. Molly woke up the next day and saw Ellie's skirt had a ruffle so of course hers had to have one too.  Here are the finished products!

And yes, I always hang my daughters' clothes on a ladder in our backyard with a mason jar filled with flowers next to it. Don't you??

I had a dandy of time getting them to stand still for pictures but I tried!

I'm heading over to Pinterest now. See ya!

Latest & Greatest Friday #29

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Features and My New Favorite Thing

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My foyer is troubling me. It's quiet dark and dingy and I know we have to paint at some point. But I was browsing in Home Goods last week and came across a bright, happy print that I knew would bring a little sunshine to that space. I am in love with it!  It is on a wall that faces you as soon as you walk into the house and it makes me smile every time I come in now. And it was $19.99!  Suh-weeet!

Ok, now for features!  Yay!  Sorry about last week's party being sans thumbnails. This week we should have thumbnails back!

Chalk Paint Bookcases
I love this transformation. Paint goes a long way to freshen and brighten a space or a piece of furniture!

Swingy Dress (pattern!)
How cute is this?? My girls would love this! Plus it looks like it could be a good twirling
skirt and if you are a mom of girls you know how important that is.

Furniture Redo
I wish I had the nerve to do two things. 1 is to get a short pixie hair cut and the other is to paint our bedroom furniture. Jenn's bedroom furniture looks so chic now!

Estate Sale Dresser
Such a good decision to stain the top, wasn't it? It looks so good!

Vanity Transformation
How easy is this and it makes such a big impact! A great update!

Butterfly Cupcakes
These decorated cupcakes are so cute and springy! I love the sparkly wings!

Flower Pot Teacher Gift
I love this. If I got this as a gift I would use it in my classroom to hold pencils. Or rulers. or flowers. Or I would put my secret bag of Mini Reese's PB cups in it. You know we all keep candy in our bottom right hand drawer of our desks, right?

Thanks to you all for linking up! I would love if you could grab my button! Hope to see you all tomorrow at the party!