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fashion

DIY Crafts, DIY Parties & Holidays, DIY Sewing, Life

A Handmade Christmas: DIY Gifts for Women

Are you joining me in committing to a handmade Christmas this year? Whether you’re making a Christmas gift for your sister, your best friend, your mom or your aunt, the DIY ideas below are easy and unique! I think all of them are lovely, but I’m especially fond of the boot socks and the homemade tea bags.

A Handmade Christmas: DIY Gift Ideas for Women by The DIY Mommy

  1. Boot Socks by Oops! I Craft My Pants
  2. DIY Soaps by 100 Layer Cake
  3. 15 Minute Infinity Scarf by The DIY Mommy
  4. Soy Candles by Ruffled
  5. Braided T-Shirt Bracelets by Henry Happened
  6. Hot / Cold Bags by Bee in my Bonnet
  7. Cozy Toes Slippers by Sew News
  8. Pin Cushion Jars by Make It and Love It
  9. DIY Tea Bags by A Beautiful Mess

Do you have a friend, mom, sister, grandma or aunt in your life that you’re planning to make something for this Christmas? Please comment below!

Commit to A Handmade Christmas This Year with The DIY MommyThis post is part of The DIY Mommy’s “A Handmade Christmas” series. Would you like to commit to giving handmade gifts (made by you or someone else) for Christmas this year? Join me by entering here!

DIY Sewing, Life

Sew a Vintage-Inspired Half Slip

by Christina Dennis

Sew a Vintage-Inspired Half Slip by The DIY Mommy

This dress was beautiful, but it needed a lining badly! (Oh-so-see-through!) I whipped up a little vintage-inspired half slip for it the first time I wore it using a scrap of lining fabric and cotton lace. Here’s how I did it:

Materials:

  • 1 yard lining fabric (or cotton woven, cotton jersey, silk)
  • 1 yard cotton lace trim (optional)
  • 1 yard 1″ elastic

Directions:

Sew a Vintage-Inspired Half Slip by The DIY MommySew a Vintage-Inspired Half Slip by The DIY Mommy

Cut a piece of fabric that is approximately 1 1/2 times the width of your waist and the length you want your slip to be + 2″ (for the elastic casing and bottom hem). Fold it in half right sides together, and sew the center back seam. I used a serger, but you could use a regular machine and zigzag the raw edges.

Sew a Vintage-Inspired Half Slip by The DIY MommySew a Vintage-Inspired Half Slip by The DIY Mommy

Finish the top and bottom raw edges with either a serger or a zigzag. Hem the lower edge by folding it up 1/2″ and sewing. Fold the upper edge over 1 1/4″ and sew close to the finished edge to make a casing for the elastic. Leave a 1 1/2″ opening, thread elastic through, then sew the opening shut.

Sew a Vintage-Inspired Half Slip by The DIY MommySew a Vintage-Inspired Half Slip by The DIY Mommy

If desired, sew a strip of lace over the bottom hem as shown. It’s a pretty detail that could peek out from beneath a skirt! Finally, I like to sew a line in the middle of my elastic casing to ensure the elastic doesn’t roll and flip (as shown above). That’s it! It’s a pretty little slip for beneath those sheer skirts and dresses that’s easy to make and so sweet and feminine!

Sew a Vintage-Inspired Half Slip by The DIY Mommy

Fashion, Life

Wear a Summer Dress with Tights & Boots for Fall – Petite Curvy Mom Style

by Christina Dennis

Wear a Summer Dress with TIghts and Boots - Petite Curvy Mom Style by The DIY Mommy

Summer has come to a close and as of yesterday I am now 30 years old. I’ve been considering doing posts on my style for a little while now, and with your email & comment encouragement and with my “I’m 30 now, so what do I need to feel self conscious for” attitude as of late, I present to you my very first one!

I am rather short at 5’3″ and I wear about a size 10 to 12 in clothing at the moment (that number has been anywhere from size 6 to size 16 since marriage and two pregnancies). I’m not euphorically happy with the shape of my body at present, but I remind myself that it has carried two babes and that my goal is to be healthy rather than some shape that is unrealistic in the near future.

Wear a Summer Dress with TIghts and Boots - Petite Curvy Mom Style by The DIY Mommy

I really enjoy fashion and fashion blogs. I see a lot of images of tall, willowy and gorgeous women in the latest trends and I thought it would be fun (and hopefully helpful to some other women with a body shape like mine) to show you how I put together some of my favourite outfits and what I do to highlight my favourite and not-so-favourite features of my petite and curvy mommy self.

I also love to DIY (of course) and find things on a tight budget, so I’ll incorporate those things into my style posts which for now I’m going to commit to once monthly. It’s darn hard to take pictures of oneself while one’s baby is sitting on the lawn and there’s a toddler that may (or may not!) be napping in the house!

Wear a Summer Dress with TIghts and Boots - Petite Curvy Mom Style by The DIY Mommy

Here, I’m wearing a turquoise boho dress in a gorgeous silk/cotton with pretty lace detailing. I’ve cinched it at the waist with a belt to define one of my smaller parts, added chocolate brown tights for a more fall-ish look, and I’m wearing boots with a hidden 1″ heel to add a little lift to my short self. It’s a simple outfit, but I really love it and it’s comfy enough for doing errands with a baby and a toddler in tow. There actually is a DIY element to this outfit – underneath the dress is a simple slip that I made lat minute because of the sheerness of the dress. I’ll post a tutorial on that soon!

Dress: Anthropologie (the sale rack!) $40
Belt: Old $10
Tights: Joe Fresh $6
Boots: Leatherette strappy boot from GoJane.com $27.50

Thanks for sticking with me through my first style post and encouraging me to do it!

What is your favourite outfit to wear during the first part of fall?

Sew a 15 Minute Infinity Scarf by The DIY Mommy
DIY Pregnancy, DIY Sewing, Life

Sew a 15 Minute Infinity Scarf

By Christina Dennis

Sew a 15 Minute Infinity Scarf by The DIY Mommy

I love scarves; they are the epitome of fall accessories. They’re perfect for layering and transitioning lighter fall clothing into cooler weather and scarves can add a beautiful pop of colour or pattern to what might otherwise be a dull outfit.

Infinity scarves are a kind of tubular scarf that’s attached at both ends. They’re usually stretchy, and you can wrap them around your neck once, twice, or sometimes three times for different looks/warmth levels. This type of scarf is a breeze to make, and I’d love to show you how!

Supplies:

  • 2 yards of very lightweight fabric (I prefer stretchy fabric like rayon/cotton/bamboo/polyester knit jersey but you could also use woven lightweights like cotton voile, cotton lawn)
  • hand sewing needle + thread

I used Designer stretch Polyester Jersey Knit Floral Purple/Teal/Grey for the floral scarf and a polyester jersey I found at a local fabric store for the leopard print scarf.

Instructions:

Sew a 15 Minute Infinity Scarf by The DIY Mommy

Cut your fabric in half lengthwise so that you have two long strips (you can make two scarves out of two yards!). Fold the fabric in half again lengthwise with the right sides together. Pin and sew the raw edges together (I used a serger, but you could use a regular sewing machine with a 5/8 inch seam).

Sew a 15 Minute Infinity Scarf by The DIY Mommy

Pull the tube to the right side out, and then pull one end over the other so that the right sides are together again and the two raw edges meet, as pictured above.

Sew a 15 Minute Infinity Scarf by The DIY Mommy

Here’s the trickiest part (and it’s not even that tricky), but it gives the scarf a cool twist that helps it lay flat: Twist the inside layer so that its seam meets the opposite side of the outer layer’s seam, as pictured above. Basically, you’re twisting the inside layer 180 degrees. Pin the raw edges together..

Sew a 15 Minute Infinity Scarf by The DIY Mommy

Sew the raw edges together leaving a 2″ opening.

Sew a 15 Minute Infinity Scarf by The DIY Mommy

Turn the scarf right side out and hand-stitch the opening closed. Voila! Your scarf is ready to be worn & loved.

Sew a 15 Minute Infinity Scarf by The DIY Mommy

Twist it once for a drapey look.

(I like to model scarves in front of my messy bookcase and beside my full basket of laundry.)

Sew a 15 Minute Infinity Scarf by The DIY Mommy

Twist it three times for a snug cowl.

(I also like to modal scarves in front of my fridge, at night.)

(Giveaway closed as of 09-30-2012 @ 10:00 pm MST.)

DIY Crafts, Fashion, Life

9 Favourite Fall Fashion Styles for the DIY Mommy

By Christina Dennis

Fall has to be my favourite time of year. To me, even though the leaves turn and fall, it’s a time for fresh beginnings and new dreams. I love sipping warm spicy drinks in the brisk weather, and I’ve always enjoyed dressing in more interesting layers and fall-ish fashion.

As a mom – and as a crafty mom at that – I like to find outfits that are just as practical as they are interesting & creative. Jeans are my go-to pant, and stretchy layers work so well with an on-the-go lifestyle. Here are my top 9 favourite outfit ideas for fall this year for a DIY Mommy:

9 Favourite Fall Fashion Styles for The DIY Mommy

  1. (Image Credit) Nothing says “autumn” more than a scarf, and I love this colourful scarf paired with a mustard yellow blouse, trouser jeans and medium brown accessories. Easy and casual!
  2. (Image Credit) For a “mom’s night out”, this forgiving wrap is gorgeous and glamourous. Tall brown boots are a fall classic, and the teal purse adds just the right pop.
  3. (Image Credit) Brights can be worn in fall too! Here, happy hues of yellow and aqua transition into autumn via cardigan and casual jeans.
  4. (Image Credit) Coloured jeans can still be worn in cooler weather with a monotone, neutral scarf and cardigan combo paired with brown accessories.
  5. (Image Credit) This floral scarf is so sweet worn with a feminine blazer in a nubby textured fabric. I like the contrasting striped shirt underneath.
  6. (Image Credit) Here’s another fabulous example of bringing bright colours (mint & blush) into fall with heavier fabrics and a warm scaf.
  7. (Image Credit) A bold striped cardigan is paired with a black shell, pumps and pops of yellow accessories. Trouser jeans are a must for fall!
  8. (Image Credit) Fern green and mustard yellow are classic fall colours and pair nicely here with chestnut brown accessories.
  9. (Image Credit) A pop of coral makes this casually cute outfit sing! A tan biker jacket is a nice classic paired with a skinny jean.

What is your go-to “mommy uniform” when the weather cools down? Are you a jeans girl? Prefer maxi dresses & cardis? Comment below; I’d love to hear!

(P.S. I’m working up the courage to possibly do regular features of my own style – I’ve noticed a lack of fashion blog posts for petite-ish, curvy moms. Please let me know if this might be something that would be interesting or not!)

(P.P.S. Want to make your own scarf? Click here for a DIY!)

Christina Dennis is the creator and designer behind Golly Gee Baby, a collection of unique and colourful baby clothing and accessories that are ethically manufactured.

Life

Sew a Boho Blouse — A Simplicity Pattern Review

By Christina Dennis

Sew a Boho Blouse by The DIY Mommy

I love easy, breezy bohemian-style blouses. They remind me of the last days of summer and they also hide some postpartum parts of my body that I don’t find so lovely. *wink!* Empire-waisted blouses with flowing hems are also fantastic maternity wear!

I found the perfect pattern by Simplicity for a pretty tunic blouse:
Simplicity sewing pattern 1896: Misses' & Plus Size Tops SUEDEsays Collection size A (XXS-XS-S-M-L-XL-XXL)

What I like about this pattern is the fluttery sleeves and the elastic/drawstring waist. Plus, it’s by a season 5 Project Runway designer – oh, how I love that show!

Supplies:

DIY Boho Blouse by The DIY Mommy

Directions:

  1. Cut your pieces out from your fabric using the tunic pattern. I made some changes. I changed the direction the sleeve pattern piece was placed on the fabric because I wanted the crochet edging of my fabric to be on the edge of the sleeves. I also shortened the bottom of the blouse by a good 4″ (because I’m short and I didn’t want the tunic to be that long).
  2. Sew the blouse per pattern directions. I found this pattern to be quite straight forward. The only issue I had was with the facing on the neckline – boy, was that hard for me! You have to sew the facing to the neckline, then turn it to the back, then fold a hem over and sew it. It took me a few times to get it looking “normal” and laying flat. I’d recommend lots of patient pinning and pressing when you get to this point! Also – rather than hemming the bottom of the tunic the traditional way (by turning it twice and stitching with a machine), I used my serger and made a rolled hem.
  3. Press the blouse, slip it on, and enjoy your easy-breezy boho blouse!

DIY Boho Blouse by The DIY Mommy

I love my pretty blouse, and I’d definitely recommend this pattern to any intermediate seamstress. Take your time with the neckline, and try finding an interesting fabric with a lace or contrasting pattern on one salvege (turning the sleeve piece on the fabric – and buying more fabric! – to accommodate). You could also trim the sleeves with crocheted lace too!

DIY Boho Blouse by The DIY Mommy

Christina Dennis is the creator and designer behind Golly Gee Baby, a collection of unique and colourful baby clothing and accessories that are ethically manufactured.

DIY Mint Jeans by The DIY Mommy
DIY Crafts, Fashion, Life

Dye Your Own Mint Jeans

by Christina Dennis

One of the hottest trends for this year is coloured jeans – specifically mint-coloured ones! Jeans are a prefect mommy style essential, and finding the perfect shade of mint jeans can be tricky. Why not buy some inexpensive white ones and dye your own? My good friend Cheryl of Bella’s Boudoir of Jewelry and I did it this spring and it was surprisingly easy. (Those gorgeous legs pictured below are hers!)

DIY Mint Jeans by The DIY Mommy

 Supplies:

  • white jeans (we bought ours for under $25 at Winners)
  • turquoise blue fabric dye
  • emerald green fabric dye
  • salt
  • rubber gloves!

Directions:

DIY Mint Jeans by The DIY Mommy

Prepare your fabric dye according to the package directions. I bought two of each colour of fabric dye, but I only ended up using one of each for two pairs of pants since we wanted such a light mint colour! We followed the package directions for the dye, bringing some water to boil and adding the dye and a little bit of salt. We used a full package of turquoise and half a package of green to make a soft, warm mint green colour.

DIY Mint Jeans by The DIY Mommy

Mix the dye in a basin of warm water (again, following the directions according to the dye’s manufacturer), and dip your pants in. Make sure you’re wearing gloves for this (my poor friend ended up with nicely dyed green hands!) and that the jeans are submerged fully in the water as quickly as possible. I swirled the pants around in the dye with my gloved hand the entire time (mostly because I was nervous that the dye wasn’t evenly touching all parts of the pants). Our dyes said to submerge the clothing for up to 10 minutes, but I took my jeans out after only 3 minutes and Cheryl only had hers dipped in the dye for less than 15 seconds! We wanted a nice light minty colour, so if your dyes were darker like ours you’ll need to be quick too.

DIY Mint Jeans by The DIY Mommy

After dying the pants, rinse them really well with warm water. Let them dry completely before wearing them or machine washing them so that the dye will set. My jeans dyed a lot lighter than the shade they appeared in the picture above when wet, and Cheryl’s were lighter still because she didn’t dye them as long. We both washed ours later on the cool cycle in our machine washers and the dye did not fade.

There you have it – a fun project to do with a mommy friend that results in some trendy new jeans for you at a great price!

Christina Dennis is the creator and designer behind Golly Gee Baby, a collection of unique and colourful baby clothing and accessories that are ethically manufactured.

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