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Friday, May 27, 2011

Deconstructed Tee Skirt Tutorial

One of the 1st items I crafted a looooong time ago was a deconstructed skirt project. . . Those skirts are still in rotation today and I LOVE them! Thank goodness they're coming back in style.
Here's a Tute for a very Basic version of my Decon Tee-skirt pattern.


I am offering this pattern to you FREE to keep old clothes out of landfills and to help our Mother Earth. Please DO NOT SELL this pattern, and DO NOT SELL skirts you have made from this pattern. Please DO Make or Donate as many as you wish! ...and please. .if you do decide to make one. . by all means share a photo with me! I would also love to share the photo with everyone here on this blog!
If you have any questions, just leave them in the comments section below and I will answer them ASAP =cD

1. One Pair of old jeans/Skirt/Shorts of a sturdy material i.e., cordoroy, or denim (Because of this design, you can use a pair of jeans that are 1 or 2 sizes too small )
2. A few old Shirts, can be Tee-shirts or Woven, doesn't matter (I used 5 total)
3. Good, Sharp pair of scissors
4. Iron
5. Sewing Machine (you could do this by hand but it would be a real pain in the *****)
6. Measuring Tape
7. Chalk (or other washable marking tool)
9. Block Ruler
10. Thread/Pins/Needles/etc.,

Optional (but highly recommended):
A friend to help with measurements
Rotary Cutter and Self-healing mat
Stretch Needles (great for sewing together tee-shirts)
Pre-made Bias binding (for hem)

*Press and Starch all your garments
*Fold your jeans in half by grabbing the crotch in the back with your finger, and then keeping the waiste line straight. Lay your now folded jeans on your cutting mat , keeping the grain line of the jeans parallel to the lines on your cutting board.
* Make a straight-across cut, right below the zipper or right above the crotch area - try to make your cut perpendicular to the grain lines.
*Set your excess jeans fabric aside. . . . for another project ;c)
* With your scissors, straighten out the Center-Front and Center-Back seam areas. In this photo you can see where it goes in a "V". . . just take your scissors and snip that off - You don't want any Angles when you start attaching your shirts.
*Staystitch along the edge to prevent fraying.
*Starting from the Center Front Seam, Measure all around the circumfrence of the cut-off jeans. WRITE THIS NUMBER DOWN (My number was 41)
*Starting at your NATURAL Waiste, measure down your leg to where you want the skirt (bottom/hem) to end. WRITE THIS NUMBER DOWN I like my skirts to end right above the knee. For me this number was 21. (About your natural waiste: Girls, this is not your coin slot, this is the smallest area around your middle)
*Measure one of the side seams on your cut jeans from Waiste to Cut. WRITE THIS NUMBER DOWN (For me this number was 8)
*Now for some calculat'n ;c)

A - - Cut Jeans Circumference: Me (41") You =
B - -Cut Jeans Side Seam: Me (8") You =
C - -Length from Waiste to Knee, or where you want your hem to be: Me ( 21") You =
D - -How many shirts do you have? Me (5) You =
E - -Circumference (41") /Shirts (5) = Me 8.2 rounded to the nearest whole number is (9"**) You =
F - -Length of Hem (21") - Side Seam (8") = Me (13") You =
G - -Multiply results from (E) x2 Me (18") You =

hopefully these next steps don't confuse anyone. . because I used different photos (of different tee shirts) for each step. ;c)


*Use a clear block ruler, or just eyeball it, and try to center your logo, (I am centering between marks 0" and 9" on the ruler) Make a mark at 0" and whatever your result from (E) was. Make an additional mark in the center (Mine was at 4.5")
*Another photo showing the logo centered
*Line the top of your ruler up with the top line, and make a line going from the center, down to your result from (F) My number was (13")
*Next you'll make a line at the bottom, parallel to the line at the top, at the Result from (F) line. So now you can see I have a 9" line on the top, a line going down the center 13" long, and the bottom line is DOUBLE the size of the top line (18".)
*Next you'll connect the sides diagonally.
* Cut around the edges of your marked lines. . . give it a rough 1" additional space around the edges
***This next part is optional, but highly recommended if you're using regular old tee shirts. . .especially if they are very worn and hol-y (like mine he he)
*Grab some fusible interfacing. . I'm using a tricot fusible . . . you could probably use any lightweight fusible for this project though. .
*Lay out your fusible over your rough-cut tees. . Trim fusible so it's not hanging over the edges
*Before fusing. . cover with an old tee shirt or piece of fabric. . . fusible can be messy when hot . A couple things about fusible interfacing: 1. Mist only your cover fabric with water or use steam. 2. Really PRESS your iron into the fabric, and hold for a few seconds. You can see where you've pressed already because the indention the iron will make in the fabric. When you've pressed all areas, leave it sit for a few minutes. . checking it too early will make it lose it's sticky ;c)
*After your fusible has sufficiently cooled. . you can check it by pulling off the cover fabric, and try to pull some of the fusible off from a corner. If it comes off easily. . REPEAT THE PRESSING PROCESS. . if it's good and stuck. . . continue to the next step ;c)
*Trim excess fabric
(BTW I'm missing one in this photo. . =cO)
*Take your pieces, RST, and pin
*Continue to pin until all sides are pinned
*Stitch sides together (You could most certainly use a serger if you have one, I used a serge stitch which worked nicely. . but if you're using fusible interfacing, you might be able to get away with a very narrow zig-zag stitch) If using a straight stitch to connect these pieces, I would recommend top-stitching on the outside for extra "security."
*Press Seams to the side
Measure the top circumference of your stitched skirt. Make sure your circumference is LARGER than your result from (A) I got 45.5", and my result from A was 41". If it is not larger, you've done something wrong. . ;c) Email me and I'll help you. .
*Stitch Last Seam RST and Press to the side
*Check to see which shirts/logos you would like to be showing on the front
*I'm choosing the sparkly mushrooms and the "fairway to heaven" logo shirt ;c)
*Flip your sewn tees up around your jeans part, and Pin RST. Since the skirt part will be a tad bigger than your jeans part, you will have some gathers. Just use LOTS of pins and stitch thoroughly. Take your time.
*Try the skirt on to make sure it fits. If it does, Finish by topstitching, or if you have serged your edges. . . Press the seams to one side.
*Optional* Finish the hem area. . .I used a chocolate brown double fold Bias binding that was pre-made from Joanns. . If you DO choose to bind your hem area. . . Trim the areas that are point or in a "V" Shape (the shirts seams) make sure they're flat, so the binding will go on smoothly. Otherwise, I think the funky "V"s give your skirt character ;c)
VOILA.. you're done!

For more photos of the finished skirt. . . see my flickr page (click any of the photos )

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Memorial Day Quilt Shows

Times are hard, people are broke! Well, I am at least. The upcoming 3-day holiday weekend is usually designated "nature time." DH, Louie the dog, and I pack up the truck and head to the WV Hills for some one-on-one time with Mother Earth. There is nothing more rejuvinating than the smell of campfire and the feel of the cool mountain air against your skin.
Well, all that is just going to have to wait. Gas prices are just now allowing us to go very far right now. BUT, all is not lost! What can compare to the joy nature brings me? QUILTS, Quilting, and anything quilt related!!!
I have compiled a list of local quilt-related happenings. I hope you can get to enjoy this holiday with your loved ones, otherwise. . . join me!

Piecemakers Quilt Show

St Peter Claver’s Piecemakers quilt group will be having a quilt show on Sunday, May 22 beginning at 4 p.m. The show will be in the St Peter Claver Parish Hall 9th Avenue and 15th Street, Huntington. The annual presentations of Quilts to community organizations. The organizations can use the quilts they are given as fundraisers or keep them.

Quilt National: 17th Biennial Juried International Quilt Exhibition
Saturday, May 28. Entries represent artists from 46 states and 22 foreign countries. Questions, call 740-592-4981.
The Dairy Barn Arts Center
8000 Dairy Lane
Athens, OH 45701
Show is open May 28th to the Public . . . also open on Memorial day and Labor Day! This weekend 12 - 5pm

35th Anniversary Vandalia Gathering*
Friday-Sunday, May 27-29. A celebration of the traditional arts, music, dance, stories, crafts and food of West Virginia. For complete details, visit
West Virginia State Capitol Complex
1900 Kanawha Blvd. E.
Charleston, WV 25301
The West Virginia Division of Culture and History is announcing a call for entries for its annual juried quilt and wall hanging exhibition. The free summer-long exhibition, Quilts and Wall Hangings 2011, will be displayed in the Great Hall of the Culture Center, State Capitol Complex, Charleston, from May 24 through Sept. 6, 2011

Permanent Display of Quilts*
10 a.m.-3 p.m. Mondays-Saturdays. A permanent display of quilts in several areas of the 20-building village. The village store and museum has a display of the dozens of different popular Appalachian quilt block types while the Appalachian Heritage Hall is also hanging with full-size Appalachian quilts made in the area. Call 304-522-1244 or go online
Heritage Farm Museum and Village
3300 Harvey Road
Huntington, WV 25704

Quilts in the Permanent Collection*
10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesdays-Saturdays. The Highlands Museum showcases many quilts in some of its permanent collections and such historical exhibits such as "Mr. Lincoln's War." or call 606-329-8888.
Highlands Museum and Discovery Center
1620 Winchester Ave.
Ashland, KY 41101
Cost: $5.50; $4.50 seniors, students and children; free for children under 2

Sunday, May 22, 2011

QAYG - coming soon!

I've been promising a QAYG tutorial for the longest time. I am in the process of working up a quilt, and a tutorial to go along with it. So stay tuned! It should be ready within the next couple weeks. ;c)
In the meantime, enjoy this slideshow containing photos from my last completed quilt "Carrie's Quilt." I recently completed this signature quilt for my friend Megan's Grandmother Carrie.