Monday, August 29, 2011

Make it Work

I've been searching for a striped knit fabric for a few months now.  I found a few things online, but nothing that I really loved... so I decided to create some!  I thought I'd share how I did it... just in case there's someone else out there searching for a striped knit fabric (or maybe I'm the only one??)

You'll need:
solid colored knit fabric
contact paper (I've found this at Wal-Mart in their kitchen section...)
spray bottle
ruler or quilting square
a bucket for rinsing
(I know not everything is in this photo... sorry!  I'm new at this whole tutorial thing...)
Lay your fabric out flat and decide how far apart you want your stripes.  Anything not covered in contact paper is going to be the lighter color.  Cut strips of contact paper that will go the full length of the fabric.  Pull the back off the contact paper and using your ruler or quilters square, space the stripes evenly across the fabric.  Make sure that you press the contact paper down firmly so that the bleach won't seep under.  I needed a smaller section with skinnier stripes, so that's why my stripes don't go all the way across at the top.
 Next, take the fabric outside lay it flat again and spray it with the bleach.  Don't put on too much or it will spread under your contact paper.
Let it sit for a few minutes till you get the desired color change... but don't let it sit too long or the bleach will eat a hole through your fabric!
Rinse out in your bucket and pull the contact paper strips off.  Wash and dry your fabric again and.....
Stripes!  The bleached part takes on a kind of heathered look and I love it!  I'll show you what I did with the fabric next time :)

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Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Pass or Fail??

Some of you may recall that I HATE sewing clothing!  I've documented that fact here, here, and here.  I think there might be other posts declaring how annoying patterns are and how they NEVER EVER end up being the right size, but those were the first posts I found.

Anyway!  I found this blog - "MADE" that had a tutorial for a circle skirt... you do a little math and make your own pattern.  I'm not great at math, but thought I'd give it a whirl....
And what do you know?  It turned out pretty awesome!  I also made one for myself and several others for Baby Girl.
Then I noticed that on the same blog there was a tutorial for pajama pants... again, making your own pattern using a pair of pj's or shorts that you already have...
Another success!  They aren't hemmed, but I kind of like them that way!

Skip forward to today... I had bought some fabric a few weeks ago with the intention of making it into a skirt.  But it was so soft and I kept having visions of a shirt in this fabric.  I looked around for a tutorial, but couldn't really find anything I loved.  So... I made a pattern up all by myself.  And guess what?!?

It's not horrible!!  I think the neck needs to be a little lower.  And I made the shoulder seams too wide so the sleeves kind of hang off a little bit.  And I kind of goofed on the gathering at the top of the shirt... maybe if I added some detail around the neck?

So tell me what you think... is this a pass?  or an epic fail??

p.s. This is technically an EPIC FAIL because I forgot to prewash the fabric... meaning that it is now a "hand wash in cold; lay flat to dry" article of clothing... booooooooo!!!!

Sunday, August 07, 2011


Have you ever ridden Mickey's Death Wheel at Disneyland?  Okay... technically it's called Mickey's Fun Wheel... but since it's one of the only rides that has ever made me feel like I wanted to die... Death Wheel it is!
Don't let it's bright colors and smiling face fool you.  The cars that are stationary are fine.  The ones that roll and sway are evil.  Completely.  The last few days my stomach has been in knots... like I've been on a continuous Death Wheel ride.  Let me explain...

Tomorrow is our first day of school and Friday was the open house for all 3 schools.  We started at the middle school and the line to get into the school went out to the parking lot.  I dropped off Hubby and Red and the rest of us headed to the next school to figure out who Baby Girl's teacher would be (the schools here are weird... we don't find out who the teacher will be till the Friday before school starts!  Insane...).

We got to the school, scanned the lists and my heart sank.  Baby Girl has the same teacher that Red had last year.  She's not a HORRIBLE teacher, but she did manage to make me very crazy last year.  But I have this kind of weird attitude about teachers.  We don't always get to choose the people we work with in life.  And some of those people are going to make us, Baby Girl will stay in the class.  I'm not going to ask for her to be moved... but I think it's going to be stressful.

Next we headed over to meet Little Bug's new teachers.  He was supposed to be in a class that had 2 teachers that would rotate the kids back and forth for different subjects.  This last school year was not an easy one for him.  There was a little girl in the class who was very aggressive and Little Bug came home over and over with scratches on his face.  He also regressed  A LOT last year.  He stopped reading out loud and we can't get him to do the math he was really enjoying in California.  So, we were excited for him to be in this new class.

Imagine my surprise to see that his name wasn't listed on ANY class list.  We went in, asked the secretary, she checked with the registrar, who informed us that they had been told we wouldn't be returning this year.  So they didn't have him in a class.  At all.  They made a few quick phone calls and the district Special Ed put him in a class.  The same class as last year.  With the same little girl who made things so miserable.

Can you say Mama Bear??

I was in tears and more than a tad angry.  I was told I could go visit the district office if I wanted to chat with them about the placement.  At that point I was ready for more than a chat.  I went and talked with them.  They were very nice and listened to my concerns.  Then they put him in the class I requested.  I didn't even have to shake my fists at them :)

So, back to the school to meet the teachers.  Little Bug wanted to go to his old class.  He was not happy about going to the new room.  The teacher was not happy to have another student in her class (it's a big class...) and wasn't exactly pleasant.  And as I watched some of the other kids come in and out I wondered if it would be the right place for him.

We were finally able to go back to the middle school to get Red and Hubby and head home.  But there has been a pit in my stomach since then...

That leads us to today... I didn't get to meet any of Red's teachers.  I don't know who they are or what they are like.  I've heard a few bad things about this middle school and I'm worried for him... a lot.  Baby Girl will be dealing with a teacher this year whose moods swing like a pendulum.  She's a bit unpredictable and not always easy to get along with.  And then... we have Little Bug.  I hope this new class will work, but if it doesn't, they will put him back in his old classroom.  And when I think of him in that class I start to feel like I'm on Mickey's Death Wheel all over again.

I can't wait for tomorrow.  Perhaps then I'll have a sense of how this year is going to be and then I can get off this crazy ride!