Inspired by The Little Mermaid Sail Dress

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My Bee decided to make herself a dress inspired by the one the Little Mermaid wore when she became human. She had been thinking a lot about this, and even worked out where we would photgraph it.

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She came up with this:

Inspired by the Little Mermaid Sail Dress, made with an old curtain, sewn by my teen

(Inspired by) The Little Mermaid Sail Dress

Inspired by the Little Mermaid Sail Dress, made with an old curtain, sewn by my teen

I am so impressed (and I don’t impress easily)! She draped the entire thing, which I have never done. My girl did say she would teach me, though. It is so cool! The best part is she used an old curtain (more comfortable than a sail, I would think). You know how I feel about upcycling (just look at the category above if you don’t).

Inspired by the Little Mermaid Sail Dress, made with an old curtain, sewn by my teen

Here it is without the belt. It isn’t a super complicated dress, but I think, well exectued. She was, at first, unsure about the piece that comes to a point in the front instead of the back, but we both agreed that it works.

Inspired by the Little Mermaid Sail Dress, made with an old curtain, sewn by my teen

The sun was in the most inconvenient spot (and I have not figured out how to move it), and we only had 30 minutes to photograph this between activities. It resulted in some artful photography.

Inspired by the Little Mermaid Sail Dress, made with an old curtain, sewn by my teen

Instead of rope, she used a belt in her closet, for a more modern look .

Inspired by the Little Mermaid Sail Dress, made with an old curtain, sewn by my teen

Her friend made her that seashell necklace a while ago. Perfect for this!

Inspired by the Little Mermaid Sail Dress, made with an old curtain, sewn by my teen

Do you recognize this dock? That time I didn’t photograph a mermaid that turned human, though.

Inspired by the Little Mermaid Sail Dress, made with an old curtain, sewn by my teen

Inspired by the Little Mermaid Sail Dress, made with an old curtain, sewn by my teen

I love when my girls are inspired to create something solely on their own, especially when it consists of using materials we already have! I am completely ecstatic to support them any way I can when they do this. Whoohoo! Way to go, my girl.

What have YOU upcycled today??

Upcycled Quick Sew Tween outfit

upcycled quick sew tween outfit by falafel and the bee

Upcycled Quick Sew Tween outfit

If you have been reading this blog for a while, you know how I feel about upcycling. If you are new here, you can see some more upcycled projects by clicking on the category “Upcycling” under the banner on top of this page. You’ll get the idea that me and upcycling, we are close.

upcycled quick sew tween outfit by falafel and the bee

That means that people give me things. All the time. I end up with linens and worn clothing and all sorts of things that people don’t want anymore, because they know I will do something with them. And you know what? I love that.

upcycled quick sew tween outfit by falafel and the bee

This outfit was made from a small square lace tablecloth, and some mysterious heavier-weight fabric (maybe drapes) that was in my stash. I have no idea of what it was in it’s past life, but it was perfect for the skirt.

upcycled quick sew tween outfit by falafel and the bee

I will start with that shawl shirt. It was so simple, it took literally minutes to make. I turned the square diagonally so it looked like a diamond. I then folded it so the top point met the bottom point. I cut a small semicircle out of the center. Then I hemmed it. I also sewed a straight line from the bottom up to her armpit, on each side. That is it. Because it is lace, it stretched a bit when she put it on, which she loves.

upcycled quick sew tween outfit by falafel and the bee

As an aside, let me tell you that I am still blinking at the fact that my youngest is now a tween and we are all finished with Elementary school.

upcycled quick sew tween outfit by falafel and the bee

Because this girl of mine is now going on to Intermediate school, she is very appropriately more picky about what I make her, more specifically, about what she will actually wear.

upcycled quick sew tween outfit by falafel and the bee

The skirt was a bit of an experiment. I just finished thumbing through Sewing Happiness by Sanae Ishida *affiliate link* and the origami pillows caught my eye. I could not stop think about making a garment with this technique!

upcycled quick sew tween outfit by falafel and the bee

I just spread out the front panel of the skirt (much larger than it would have to be to account for the shrinking from the pintucks) and started to fold and sew. It was actually a whole lot of fun. I just sewed it up as a simple skirt (like here, here, and here,)with a casing for the elastic in the waistband.

upcycled quick sew tween outfit by falafel and the bee

I made this outfit, and she instantly put it on, and then wore it to the graduation party we attended over the weekend. I’d call that a success.

upcycled quick sew tween outfit by falafel and the bee

What have YOU made today?

 

Signature Style: Project Run and Play Challenge

Well, it is the last challenge of Project Run and Play’s Season 11 and the theme is Signature Style.

I swear I think my signature style should be “where the heck did the time go, let me rush about last minute and fit it all in“. I actually came up with this idea a while ago, but the execution took longer than I remembered it would, so when I began Wednesday evening, I was stuck at “watching the glue dry” stage until Thursday afternoon. And then it was a rush against the sun setting so that I could actually photograph it and edit the photos before today.

I normally would have just let myself off the hook, especially after the week we’ve had (more about that in this week’s newsletter), but I really wanted to make this dress. So there’s that.

Signature Style for Project Run and Play. Glue Batik and sewing scraps with water soluble fabric.

Falafel and the Bee’s Signature Style

I began by asking myself, what is my signature style? The answer came in parts. The first being it had to be upcycled. I have been using tons of sheets lately,  I decided that would be a good place to start. If you know me, you know that I also love to paint on fabric. A lot.

Signature Style for Project Run and Play. Glue Batik and sewing scraps with water soluble fabric.

For this project, I did the batik method I used used years ago, (part one, part two, part three). I used Elmer’s blue school gel glue(*affiliate link*) on the white sheet to draw out a few feathers. Then I waited for it to dry. And I waited. And I waited. Finally on Thursday when it STILL wasn’t dry, I put it out into the sunshine which miraculously came out in a rare appearance. That did the trick.

Signature Style for Project Run and Play. Glue Batik and sewing scraps with water soluble fabric.

After it was finally dry, I watered down some acrylic paint, and painted over it. After THAT was dry, I rinsed the glue out. Then dried it again. I added some fine black lines with a sharpie, and then I could eventually cut out the pattern.

Signature Style for Project Run and Play. Glue Batik and sewing scraps with water soluble fabric.

For the pattern, I wanted a simple design so that I could show off some of the details of the fabric manipulation I did. I choose the Norah Dress by Mouse House Creations (*affiliate link*). Beautiful clean lined dress is just my style.

Signature Style for Project Run and Play. Glue Batik and sewing scraps with water soluble fabric.

For the collar, I tried a new (to me) technique. I found it on Pinterest and I followed the link to Just Jude’s tutorial. This was the first time I ever used water soluble fabric, and I have to tell you, this stuff is magic (*also affiliate link*)!

Signature Style for Project Run and Play. Glue Batik and sewing scraps with water soluble fabric.

I have been working on some other recycled/upcycled projects, simultaneously. Consequently, my scraps consisted of very strange materials, like weed barrier and juice pouches. Definitley adds some visual interest, doesn’t it?

Signature Style for Project Run and Play. Glue Batik and sewing scraps with water soluble fabric.

Since the scraps I used contained a little red, I thought a red button on the back would tie it together nicely.

Signature Style for Project Run and Play. Glue Batik and sewing scraps with water soluble fabric.

I do wish I had taken better photos, but I suppose I should be thankful they were taken at all! We just made it before the sun set. And my girl was such a good sport, even with a broken finger.

Whew.

OK to recap: My signature style is upcycled, simple, clean lines, fabric manipulation, with painting, trying new techniques…and sqeaking in before the deadline.

If you were to sum up YOUR signature style, what would it be?

Wedding Dress Upcycle Transformation

Do you remember this circa 1940’s wedding dress my daughter bought at the rotary auction? Would you like to see how we upcycled it?

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She wanted to be able to wear it out. So she started by ripping out the sleeves, and cutting a large part of the skirt portion of the dress. I helped her finish it off.

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I then, put the dress into a hunter green dye bath. Because I was unsure of the fabric content, it was a crap shoot as to what color it would be. As it turned out, that dye made it this marbled purple that we both really love!

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I didn’t even have to twist the fabric. This is just how the dye took.

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I then grabbed some lace bias tape from my stash, and faced the armholes and neck.

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She can wear it with or without the crinoline. We honestly have used this thing so very much. More than you would think a crinoline  *affiliate link* would get used by a modern day teen!

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She loved it so much that she burst into an ABBA song…cause why wouldn’t she?

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SHE LOVES ABBA. And shockingly, this wasn’t “Dancing Queen“.

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The dress fits her like a glove.

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I’d say this is another successful refashion!

What have YOU refashioned today?

Post Apocalyptic Recycled outfit revealed…and a giveaway! AND a sewalong!

Today is the day!! My entry for the Post Apocalyptic Recycled sewing challenge is up on the Top Stitcher blog. Head on over to read what story I came up with and get the details of the outfit…and to vote!

If you are coming here from Top Stitchers, Welcome!

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Post Apocalyptic Recycled

I had way too much fun with this prompt, and consequently took an epic amount of photos.

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I started with these items, plus a few others. 1 man’s stained white t-shirt, recycled bottle grocery bags, part of a patio umbrella, tyvek mailers, a holey sweatshirt with the ribbing in tact, the legs of a black pair of jeans, strips of leather cut from old boots, and part of a flannel bed sheet. The whole outfit is made from recycled materials, and only notions (such as zippers and grommets) that I already had.

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Patterns used:

Shirt- Skipper top pattern by Sew Much Ado

Blank Slate Pattern’s Clean slate pants pattern *affiliate link*

Moto Jacket pattern by Jennuine Design *affiliate link*

Here is what is in it for you:

Just enter with the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win one of these awesome prize packages!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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AND if you are so inclined, you can sew along with any of the fun prompts this season!


Be sure to head over to Top Stitcher to vote!

Men’s Shirt Upcycle knot Dress

Over at Project Run and Play, liZ and Elizabeth are hosting another season of fabulous sewing! This time, Jess from the Sewing Rabbit has chosen her free Knot dress pattern to base our creations off of.

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I made some radical changes, obviously.

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I have been wanting to make a dress like this for some time now. It was one of those ideas that was floating in my head until I found the right combination of pattern and coordinating fabric. That striped fabric is a men’s button down shirt that I completely cut apart. I added the sweet little flower fabric to compliment it.

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Instead of ties for the shoulders, I gave it sleeves and sewed in ties around them…but they didn’t quite reach. So I added the most precious buttons (that I have been saving for something like this) to them. Gah. CUTENESS OVERLOAD!!!!

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There’s a hedgehog button on the front.

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I used part of the original button placket for the back working closure. The neckline is encased in bias tape.

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I also incorporated another tie feature in front, like a belt.

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It started out as a tunic, and my sweet girl informed me that she only wears dresses. Easy enough fix. I added that bottom panel of blue to complete it!

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I constructed it with all french seams (it is my new favorite way of finishing seams). The inside is as pretty as the outside!

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After a whole morning of rain, the sun magically appeared and we ran to the beach to catch the light.

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It was so windy and beautiful and wild.

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Everything I love about living here.

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I love that my 9 year old still wants to wear these sweet frocks.

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I know this will be a dress that gets a lot of use.

What have YOU made today?