Friday, July 31, 2009

I spy a DIY: zipper flower rosettes

How's you summer been going? I've been taking fashion design classes at a local college for the past few weeks. I get to broaden my sewing skill horizons, meet new kids (including eccentric sixth graders with a passion for anime. Ugh more on that later...), pretend to ballroom dance with the mannequins when I should be doing *important* things, and make funny observations about my fellow passengers on the train ride there (i.e. woman eating three snacks while reading a book on  overcoming addiction to food, old man listening to 867-5309 on full volume for all to hear etc.). 

ANYWAYS, I've begun to work on dress for my class's upcoming fashion show. My design involves a nice, big zipper flower. 

I went in search of a good tutorial to make one, but they all either a.) were too pointy. I'm going for a rounded rosette look or b.) involved hot glue, which I am not too fond of due to a particular incident as a child involving metallic sequins and my thumb. So I decided to make my own and will now share it with you good looking folks. 

+zipper(s) with exposed metal teeth (the longer your zipper, the bigger the flower. I used several and sewed them together. Look for a bin of reject zippers in a fabric shop. They're much cheaper and work just as well.)
+thread that corresponds to the color of your zippers
+an hour or two of your time (I got the big yellow one during 3 episodes of The Nanny)

Note: I know the following directions are not very eloquent or fantastically illustrated. If you have any questions, don't hesitate to ask in the comments!
1. Unzip your zipper. Cut through the teeth on each side, as close as possible to the pull, on both sides. If you are using multiple zippers, do this to them as well.

2. On all except for one zipper half, cut the flap of fabric on the other end, as close as possible.

3. Take the one zipper half with the end flap remaining. Tightly roll the fabric flap to form the basis of the flower bud. Secure with a stitch or two.

4. Wrap the zipper around the bud, spiraling downward so the teeth do not overlap. Continue until the bud of the flower is the size that you'd like.

5. Fold the zipper fabric, making a little pleat, and secure it with a stitch. 

6. Stitch the edge, near the fold, of the zipper fabric to the bud. Continue stitching and pleating, every half inch or so, wrapping the bottom of the zipper around. (I know this sound complicated, but I promise once you start you will get a feel for it)

7. Once you're through stitching your zipper, stitch the end of it to the middle of the backside of the rosette.

8. If you are adding another zipper half, simply stitch it where the other half left off. Continue until the rosette is the size that you'd like it.

You can use these for all sorts of things: headbands, hair clips, pins, edgy yard decor to throw off the neighbors etc. My mind is reeling with ideas. I can't wait to make some more!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

things that may or may not alter your mood considerably.

1. cheap nail polish, in the approximate shade of a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle.
2. small children grocery shopping with their grandparents.
3. when waiters/waitresses tell you that what you ordered is an excellent choice. This not only heightens excitement for the meal, but it causes you to feel that you are a magnificent decision maker.
4. finding small things you'd thought you'd lost long ago (i.e. board game pieces, hair clips etc.)
5. being offered snacks. 

Saturday, July 18, 2009

i got you babe

Sorry things have been quiet around here. I hope this makes up for it.

Have a lovely weekend!

Friday, July 10, 2009

saltwater queen.

Forget those ubiquitous gladiators that everyone and their mom has (I'm not kidding. She has them. Go look in your mother's closet. I'll wait.), retro made-for-toddlers-who-run-around-the-playground sandals are where it's at! 

My Saltwater Sandals came in the mail today. Even though this pair is made for women, the sizing says youth, which just makes me feel really young and vibrant and almost not drink my Metamucil. Almost. They make me so happy that I decided to go outside and frolic in joy with the woodland creatures of my yard.
It did not go over very well. 
(shirt: diy of an old v-neck. One of these days I'll make a tutorial on it. Maybe. skirt: old Tommy Hilfiger dress. belt: ripped off of my mom's target shirt. A rebel I am.)
This pattern reminds me of Liberty print. I fashioned this skirt out of an old Tommy Hilfiger dress I got at TJ Maxx in the fourth grade. Radical stuff, I know. 

P.S. I want to make a new header, but am photoshop/html challenged. If anyone wants to help a girl out, drop me line in the comments or email. I will pay you with my love! And a DIYed t-shirt.