I did something that was long overdue. I updated my sidebar links. There are a few new ones and a few gone (mostly because the those bloggers weren't blogging anymore). Oh, and you can now search the blog! This should be useful - especially for me. Just thought I'd tell you to take a look in case you hadn't noticed.
Remember a few months ago when I told you I was really trying to buy more of my clothing at the thrift store? Probably not, but that's OK. I'm here to tell you that I've been fairly successful at accomplishing that goal. I wear at least one thrifted item at least 90% of the time and more often than not, I am wearing a few different thrifted items. I'd like to work more on some refashioning so that I feel like I have even more options at the thrift store. A few weeks ago, I picked up this skirt at the thrift store. I loved the print and thought it was great for summer, but it was two sizes too small and way longer than I would like it to be. I almost left it, but then thought about how easy it would be to refashion - give it a new waistband and bring up the hem. And it was! Here's how I did it:
You do need to start with a full skirt. The key is changing a waistband that doesn't fit into an elastic one that will fit comfortably. But, you still need plenty of fulness to fit around your hips and still give you the fulness you want.
1) Cut off the waistband - make sure to trim carefully so you can get a straight edge.
2) Cut a length off the bottom - leave an extra two inches for hemming. I ended up cutting 8" off my skirt.
3) From the piece you cut off the bottom, cut a waistband. You will want to cut a piece that is double the width of your elastic plus 1". I used 1" elastic and cut mine 3" wide.
4) Iron the waistband in half and pin to the top of the skirt with right sides together. You may have to readjust the length of your waistband if you skirt isn't the same width at the top and bottom. Mine was, so the fit was almost perfect. I just overlapped the finished edges at the center front and this is where I inserted the elastic. Cut your elastic by just wrapping it around your waist and cutting it at a comfortable length for you. I always cut mine too long at first and then check it before I sew it together and end up cutting a few inches off.
5) Stitch the waist band to the top of the skirt. I used a serger here (I didn't tell you that I got a serger a while back - I did and it's wonderful!) and I think if you have one this would be a good idea because there are several layers of fabric here. Otherwise, make sure to reinforce the seam with a zig zag.
6) Iron the seam allowance toward the skirt and topstitch over it to hold it down.
7) Measure your elastic by pulling it around your waist. Then use a safety pin to insert it into your waistband/casing.
8) Finish by hemming. I ironed the hem up 1" and then turned up another inch and sewed. And voila - frumpy to fun!
I'm thinking this could work either way - if you find a skirt that's too big or too small. I think it would also work great to just use some of that wide band elastic on the top. I may have done this, but it was Saturday night, I wanted to wear it on Sunday, and the nearest fabric store is 40 miles away.
p.s. The belt and cardigan are also thrifted. The tee is from an closeout outlet store and I got it for $2.50. The shoes are new, an impulse buy. I've been wanting shoes that color of yellow ever since I saw them on the AT&T agent that helped us change our phone numbers when we moved last year. They were on sale for $20. I think this brings the grand total for the outfit around $30.
Peter turned six! Yes, yes, we did have a birthday (almost two weeks ago), but it's kid birthday season (Ned's is in about two weeks) in our house and we're just calling it birthday month around here. So, excuse me if I'm a little late in posting this, but I'm still in celebration mode. Peter had a great day complete with candles in his morning pancakes and a visit to a friend's house in the afternoon where he ran a car track from their moose head antlers to the floor and saw their chickens. He loved it!
For those of you who followed on Facebook, I did go with strawberry skewers for his class treat. I am always appalled at the amount of sweets that end up at the class parties and I wanted to do something healthy. The kids loved it! Phew! I was a little worried. I printed the free flags from Fog and Thistle. I think I will do the same thing for Ned's class birthday treat.
I love this kid's smile. And that he has no trouble picking out the best flavor cake - that was one delicious chocolate cake. Thanks for making me a mom, Peter - you're a great kid!
I am still debating whether I will throw the boys a joint friend birthday party when the weather gets warmer. I told myself this was the year. Talk me into it please...
Thank you for all of your encouraging comments in the last post. I am dealing with it all fairly well - the most noticeable change to me is that I'm not eating as well or exercising as much, which is unfortunate because those things would probably help me feel better. I felt like I wasn't blogging much because there were so many things going on that I hadn't shared here yet that were the biggest parts of my life. We are enjoying a nice relaxing Easter weekend at home which is really helping. Here's some of what we've done.
I tried the electrical tape method from the latest MS Living magazine, but it didn't turn out quite as neat as hers did. I also tried punching out some shapes, but they just fell off the eggs. Did anyone else try this?
The boys did a little coloring with crayons on their eggs, but mostly just wanted to get another one in the dye as soon as one egg was finished.
I made two bowling bunnies - finished them very late last night and slipped one in each easter basket. I have enough to make a full set embroidered and cut out. I hope to finish them today.
And orange rolls (although I use theRefrigerator Roll recipe instead of the Dinner Roll on). This is more of a General Conference tradition for us than an Easter one. There's no better day to listen to conference than Easter - I'm grateful to be home enjoying the day, learning about the Savior, and watching the boys hide their eggs and then go searching for them again. Happy Easter everyone!
**No this is not a current photo - it's from last summer. I'm just trying to remind myself that the grass will get greener.**
After I publish a post, I always go check my blog's home page and make sure that it's on the site correctly. Last time when I did this, I noticed my header says, "adventures in sewing, crafting, motherhood, and life" and I thought about how there hasn't been a whole lot of "life" around here lately. And by here, I mean the blog, because there certainly has been a lot of life going on with me. When I have things to think about, I keep them in. I like to sit and stew it over by myself, or with Ryan, he is definitely my sounding board. At some point it all as to come out, though and I think I'm there. I apologize for the flow of these next four paragraphs. I keep reading over them and can't seem to make them fit together better, so here it goes...
My Grandpa's health is failing. We're not really sure how much longer he has, but he's not doing well. This is the grandpa that I grew up with and he's been more of a father to me than anyone. He's dying of cancer, so it's just painful and slow. I'm not close enough to be witnessing much of it or helping out much, but I can hear the toll it's taking on my Mom and Grandma when I talk to them on the phone. Cancer sucks!
One of my closest friends here in town (one of the women I exercise with 3x a week) just had surgery to remove a benign brain tumor. She lost her hearing in one ear, her voice, and her facial movement on one side. It will probably take her several months to recover and a surgery or two more to help recover her voice and some of her hearing. She came home from the hospital yesterday and I visited today (with my other exercise buddy). She looked great and has a great attitude. I am thankful to see her doing so well.
Peter's doing well in school, but is still super delayed in language. We got his yearly evaluation results this week and no surprise, he still tests about 1.5 years behind in language. His issues are not super clear cut and sometimes I feel like there's not much more we can do for him than we are doing, but I feel like I need and want to something. We are grateful that his speech therapist has agreed to give him an extra session of therapy each week as part of a non-profit organization she is starting. This means another trip to "town" each week, but we can handle it, right?
And the job search is impending. Ryan is wrapping up his research and has started writing a paper (I'm hoping it will be finished by this summer). After that paper is written, it's all systems go for the job search. With the economy how it is and the way this went last time Ryan was looking for a job (after graduation, he was unemployed for three months while we had an infant and a two year old), more than anything, this is just making me nervous. Thanks to a boss who values Ryan and has set up an extra year of funding for him, he won't be out of job for more than a year here but there is still something so unsettling to me about the fact that we are in our mid-thirties, have a couple of kids, and aren't "settled," whatever that means.
I'm trying to be hopeful about these things, so I think it's appropriate that it's spring right now. If it could just get a little warmer here, then I might really have a chance to really see the bright side of all these things. I am feeling better about it all today than I did yesterday when I wrote most of this post, but still feeling in need of more spring, more outside time, and less cold feet. Could someone send some sun, please?