Friday, 14 June 2013

Getting crafty - Retro top refashion

Well hello you ruddy lovely people!

Just a quick one today from me (Elizabeth) about this rad shirt that I made even more rad. (Who the heckles says "rad" anymore... get with the times!)

This, my friends is the before and the after shot of said shirt:


Growing up, my Mum always had a sewing project on the go. She even made my sister's wedding dress (as well as Emily and my bridesmaids dresses!) and so by proxy I sort of learned to sew! I liked this shirt to begin with but it felt a bit masculine. I decided to take the sleeves off, round off the collar, and dye it light blue. I took the following steps to get me to the final product:

Step one: Lay the shirt flat and inside out on your desk.
Step two: Grab a scrap sheet of paper to make a crude pattern piece (continuity is your friend)
Step three: Admire my bright pink sewing machine.

Step four: Start drawing the shape you want for your new arm holes. I roughly sketched it in first, then rounded it off with a darker line on top. This step may be the hardest.

Step five: Cut that pattern piece, and draw it on your shirt (I used an orange felt tip marker which didn't have loads of ink in it anymore, so it wouldn't bleed through the fabric)

Step six: Flip your pattern piece over and repeat step five!

Step seven: a lot like step four - turn the shirt around and draw a new shape for the back of the shirt. You'll likely want it to be wider across your back than your front (at least I did) just make sure where your shoulder is, that it meets up with the front, and you'll be fine when cutting and sewing time comes!

Step eight: cut the shirt about a centimetre away from the line you drew, so you allow for a bit of wiggle room for sewing.
Step nine: (Not shown) iron the edges down so that your line is where the crease is. This makes your life a LOT easier when you sew it!

Step ten: (Also not shown) Sew that baby! I sewed the seam about two millimetres away from the edge. It's a bit tricky keeping your line uniform, but take it slowly if you need to - I did!
Step eleven: (Also not shown... I stopped taking pictures at this point, apparently. Worst blog post ever.) Draw a circle on the back of the collar, and cut the corners off. Tuck the edges in and do your best to sew it closed. I really really really wish I took a picture of me doing this... but in my defense, both my hands were in use!
Step twelve: I dyed my shirt in very hot water with some ink! After it sat in the steamy steamy bath 30-40 mins, I rang it out and rinsed it in very very cold water. I let it sit in a sink of cold water for about 10 minutes, let the water out, and repeated.

Then, when all was dry and I was happy: I put on my cute new shirt and made a smug face and took a picture! CUTE SHIRT ALERT!

(cheeky little shout out to Jacquie's shop Wee Little Stitches and the amazing Doctor Who pattern she stitched up for my partner James' Christmas gift, which is hanging on our wall!) 

Tuesday, 11 June 2013

This year is going to be different!

Summer. The season of shorts, tanks, and bathing suits... sigh... Every summer I worry, I worry about how I look in shorts, tanks, and especially the dreaded bathing suit. Can you see my underarm rolls? Why are my thighs so lumpy? Is my muffin top showing? Is everyone looking? Are they judging?
Elizabeth, Mike, and I. Probably the last time I was photographed in a bathing suit.
I live in a city that is cold for most of the year. Sweater weather begins in August, snow starts in October, and if we are lucky, it is gone by May. I love it. It gives me plenty of opportunity to pile on sweaters, cardigans, and scarves (I do love knitwear!). Summer is short and vicious. High humidity, high UV indexes, and blaring sun. Thank the lord it is only for a few short weeks.

Why then, do I dread summer?

Quite frankly, it is because I am Fat. With a capital F. Always have been, always will be. I've spent my life covering up. I've spent too much time being modest and hiding my pale skin away under strategically selected clothes. Since I can remember I've been a “big girl”. I've been the funny, chubby friend. I spent my life building my character and personality, not my physique. I've spent my life hating the way I look. I walk into a room and assume that everyone is judging me on my size. I assume that people see my size before they see anything else.

I have a confession. I'm fucking done. I'm fucking tired of hiding and hating my body. Guess what, I'm fat. I'm fat whether I'm wearing shorts or long pants, if I'm wearing a tank or a sweater. And I don't care anymore.
The five siblings! We are all a little chubby! And I love it!

I vow that this summer is going to be different. I will not spend hours looking in the mirror. I will not suffer through the heat, wearing long sleeves. I will not step on the scale and decide my worth based on the number staring back at me. I will wear shorts. I will wear tanks. And I might even find an excuse to wear a bathing suit. I'm done being hard on myself. I am done of sighing at my reflection. I am done crying in change rooms. I am done thinking that "fat" is a dirty word.

My new summer dress!

This summer I will be proud of my body. I will eat ice cream. I will swim. I will remember that I'm not judging others and I really don't care if they are judging me. I will remember that being fat isn't a bad thing. I will remember that I am cute and I am worth more than my appearance!