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1  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / Mens Hypnotoad tshirt recon and bonus girls dress to skirt on: October 17, 2012 09:33:31 PM

I have been researching and sketching ideas for upsizing tshirts for a very long time. I even have boxes of shirts waiting to be made big enough to be worn. I also just bought a book to learn more about my serger. This challenge was the impetus I needed.

Introducing my Bonkee (this is our mutual term of endearment... it's a long story) in a shirt that, like many others, is way too tight on him.

He has lots of these awesome tshirts from sizes gone by. It's hard to find fun shirts in a 4-5X and even shirts that do fit tend to do this!

So I took another shirt that was too small for him and had holes all over but he refused to part with (why do men get so emotionally attached to their clothing?) and chopped them both up into a FRANKENSHIRT!! And doesn't he look dapper?

It's hard to see here but Hypnotoads eyes are very close in color to the tiedye.

Like a lot of fun shirts the hypnotoad shirt had twisted significantly. I laid my clear ruler straight across the words and used my ruled cutting pad to cut it into a straight rectangle. I then cut off the arms and down the remaining seams.

For the tiedye I had to deal with a large hole and a handfull of smaller ones. I put a safety pin at every hole on the same side of the fabric so that I could easily see where they all were while I planned out how to chop it up.

Deciding how to cut these up was really really hard for my OCD brain. Finally I just dived in. I must have done something right because I ended up with very little scrap and NO large pieces. I sewed everything with the serger. I left the neckline and the bottom hem as serged edges (I moved the cutting blade and let the extra fabric roll over to give a rolled hem type finish without changing my serger settings). This isn't very professional looking but neither my Bonkee nor I care. And I didn't have enough fabric left to make a neckline without lots of piecing. I actually reused the hems from the arms to become the new arm hems! That worked OK but again, not professional looking.

I loved:
That I finished it!!!
The fact that the swirls on the front two pieces match up.
Proof of concept for male tshirt alterations. Sewing for men can be difficult and this has been in my head for a while. It's great to see that it works!!

Next time:
Alter the shirt pattern to fit him better around the shoulders.
Use 3 shirts or 1 shirt and fabric. Even 2 3X shirts barely had enough to make this one and it was rough planning it out.
I should have cut the shirt close to the edge of hypnotoad vertically to make the close top horizontal cut look better. I really wish shirt printers would realize they have to position the shirt differently on the platter to screen print large sizes. The image also ends up way up by the neckline and looks weird.
Try a real neck binding.

My daughters wanted in on the action too! Unfortunately my eldest had too much homework (Freshman year of highschool is a toughie!!) but we plan to finish hers soon. So I helped my 9 year old alter this dress which she refused to stop wearing for the past 3 years at least, even during the summer. I forgot to note the size but those arms are at least 4 inches too short. I'm guessing a 5?

I showed her how to do things and I did the machine sewing because it was stretch velvet which is painful to sew even without a big organza skirt attached to it and my Singer 99K is FAST. She picked the seams to detach the zipper, and cut the bodice off just under the arms. After turning that under and sewing to form a casing I had her run the elastic and finish it up. And now, a still somewhat too short skirt that she will probably wear until she busts the seams!!

We hope you like our projects! If you want more information ask away!!
2  NEWS AND DISCUSSION ABOUT CRAFTSTER / Craftster Itself / Sort by new topics on: January 23, 2009 07:25:56 PM
Is there a way to sort a board by most recent topic, not most recent post?
It seems to me that it should be obvious but I have looked and read and searched everywhere I can think of and can't figure this out. I don't get a chance to browse through the forums very often, and when I do I want to see the topics that I haven't read before, however all I get is pages and pages of the same things because they are popular and people keep replying to them!
3  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Winter Holidays / Masquerade Christmas Wreath on: January 12, 2008 02:34:56 PM
My mother and I decided to revamp my roommates christmas wreath one night because I could not stand the evil tinsel garland on it. There were these pretty teal and green tassels on it already so I made a search of the house trying to find something to match. I pulled out a masquerade mask I had feathered and the Classy Chicks Wreath was born.

This is a leather half face mask I purchased and then tacked a piece of felt to the back with the feather arrangement so it's removable.


The ribbon was purchased last year during after christmas sales. The opera gloves I wore with the mask to a masquerade ball 2 years ago. The tassels were after christmas sale purchases from years back. The beaded trim was leftover from a wedding at the hotel where my roommate works. We pulled back the pieces of the wreath and laid the wire beaded trim through of the middle of them, then pulled the branches back to hold it in place and make it look "random". I added an awesome chain choker of mine to finish it off.

Until I found a hideous plastic wreath star thing in the christmas decorations for my office. My roommate took it apart and found that it was a ring of christmas lights! And the perfect size to fit our wreath.


Friends don't let friends use tinsel garland!

4  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Discussion and Questions / Newbie: To couch or to Embroider, that is the question on: November 02, 2007 03:32:13 PM
This is my first post (YAY) and I am a total newbie when it comes to embroidery. I know how to cross stitch and hand sew and am fairly confident that I can pick it up if need be (especially using those amazing video tuts, thanks to whoever put in that hard work) but I'm not sure how best to do this. I'm making a cravat for the Criminologist in the Rocky Horror Picture Show. There is a link to a good detailed image below since apparently I can't embed it as a newb. I originally thought that it was all couched until I tried to find something that gave me that bulky look. Trying to couch rattail cord is a PAIN. So after a couple swirls I decided there had to be a better way. So, lovely ladies and possibly lads, what say you? What's the best way to reproduce this look. To be clear, I do know that there is a lot of beadwork here as well. I'm just talking about the swirls and outlines for the tassel jewel.

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