Today’s guest blogger is Mandy. Mandy has been a craft challenge participant for a while and we’ve gotten to know each other through twitter. Her blog is rather new so I hope you’ll go and check it out! She has a lot of great things on there.
Hey everyone…this is Mandy from Id Rather Be Crafting and I’m so excited to be filling in for Christy. This post will show you one of two things:
First, I suck at laundry.
Second, (and in the vein of a Craft Challenge) if you use just a bit of craftiness, even a nasty old shirt bound for the trash can be turned into a cute dress or cover up, without using any thread!
This is the undershirt I started with….
I swear it was washed. Several times. But, as my husband is all man, it has gotten a “little” yellow around the pits. Despite that, it took only a few supplies and some elbow grease to give it a second life in my daughters wardrobe. Want to give it a try?
Take the nastiest shirt out of your husbands pile of dirty clothes drawer of freshly laundered undershirts and get to work. Our first step was dying the shirt. This isn’t really necessary, but it does make it look less like an undershirt. Grab a box of dye from the craft store and follow the directions. Easy.
Once it is dry, throw it on your child. You will want to kind of pinch the front and back together around her side to get an idea of how tight or loose you want the dress. Also take note of where her arm pit is to make the arm hole later. I marked mine off with pins, but if you have a particularly wriggly child, I would suggest using a marker, just outside of the line you plan to cut. Then cut that bad boy all the way from the bottom of the shirt to the shoulder. Don’t worry about cutting neatly, as most mistakes will be hidden as the t-shirt rolls and comes together.
Once you have your sides cut, take your scissors and make holes on the side you just cut, going from the bottom of the shirt, and stopping where you marked the arm pit. The holes should be about one inch apart from each other, and one inch in from the cut side. You will probably have to do the front then the back, but just try to make the holes line up. Then do the other side of the shirt! Once you’re done, lace up the holes using either a ribbon, shoe lace, or some other scraps in any fashion you choose. If you tighten and scrunch the lacing, it will make the dress shorter – kind of like ruching.
For my oldest daughter, this is where the construction ended, but for my 4 year old, it was still too baggy. We ended up cutting the top of the shirt off (where the arm pit marks were) and making it a spaghetti top. I braided a few t-shirt scraps together and just poked a hole where they were placed, threaded the braid through, and made a knot on the back side to keep it in place.
The fun for the kids is decorating. Gather a bunch of different sized circles (using tupperware, bottles, cups, lids, etc) and put different colors of fabric paint on plates. We stuck a cereal box in between the layers and then I handed the reins to them. They turned out perfect!
After it dries, you are good to go! Make it unique with a different neck line, or fringe the bottom, or a different painting. It takes a little time, but was a great way to show my girls how to turn trash to treasure.