Tuesday, March 13, 2012

A Pinterest Production :: T-Shirt Skirt

Ok, Pinterest, I'll admit it - I'm hooked! If you know what the terms pins and boards mean, and have a list of categories, you are more than likely hooked too. And for those very rare few whom have not heard of Pinterest, you really should check it out!

Like many muses before, Pinterest sparks my creativity. It pushes it into overdrive and screams, "You really can do this!" It makes me think of how I can create decorations, enticing recipes, and beauty within my life and my home.

My boards are now overflowing with pins, and its definitely time to put them to use. Each week or two, I'm going to offer up A Pinterest Production in hopes to deliver a quality creation. I'll share the original Pinterest link and then show you my own finished product. Feel free to follow in the creativity and share your own finished piece!

This week's Production: DIY T-Shirt Skirt

This pin has been laying around my board for months! I'm so excited it is warm enough in Texas to start wearing skirts again. This pinterest production was not only affordable, but also one of the simplest sewing projects I have made to date.

Originally pinned by Melissa of Sew Like My Mom, this is one of those frequently pinned items. She made it very simple to follow along, and I loved her take on shirring.

I think the hardest part of this production was finding the t-shirt. I had to go to two different thrift stores and finally scored a Men's XL Lands End tee. Make sure when you are fitting yourself for the tee, you hold it up to your waist. If it goes around your waist and has an inch or two left over, you've got the right size. Not all tees will fit you the same, so check everyone of them!

If you don't already have elastic thread, you will need to pick some up at your local fabric store. Also, make sure you find the same color thread as your t-shirt.

Sew, let's get started!

First, you will need to cut across the tee at sleeve level. The bottom half of the tee will be your skirt. I used a piece of chalk and ruler to aide in the process. You don't have to cut perfectly, the shirring will hide any flaws. I will suggest you align the bottom hems of the shirt together to ensure even length.

Once you've cut your shirt down, thread your bobbin with the elastic. This might prove difficult for your first bobbin but you'll get the hang of it! I made two bobbins per skirt. If you run out of elastic thread before your finished with a complete row, reload and keep going.

It is best to start in the same place for each row of shirring. When you begin, start close to the edge, about 1/8 inch. Hems are not needed as your shirt will not fray. Instead of the traditional way of shirring, Melissa suggests, "backstitching after I begin sewing and once I make it all around the skirt, I backstitch again." This method worked wonderfully and saved time.

As you begin your next row, start it with the right side of your sewing foot on the last row and proceed until the entire row has been completed. This will keep your rows straight and will save time from marking them.

As you shirr, make sure you are applying a moderate pressure as you pull your material through your sewing foot; keeping the fabric as smooth as possible.

You will lose about 2 inches of fabric while shirring. If you find you are loosing too much, adjust the tension of the machine.

This is the inside of my skirt.

You will end up making 7 to 12 rows depending upon your skirt size in proportion to your body size. I have large hips, so I only completed 7 rows; when in doubt try it on before adding another row.

This production took approximately one hour, including threading bobbins, cutting out the skirt, and shirring. I will admit, this was my first time shirring. I thought it would be difficult, but it was simple, quick, and fun. I also had to play with the puppy every now and then, so I imagine I lost a little production time!

Total Pinterest Production price: $3.39
($1.36 for the elastic thread and $1.99 for the t-shirt. I already had the thread.)

This Pinterest Production gave me great satisfaction. I haven't made anything to wear in a long time, in fact, since high school. I had shopped all the major box stores this afternoon for some new spring clothes and just couldn't find anything I loved - until I made my T-Shirt Skirt!

FYI - This could easily be adapted for girls and expecting mothers, just adjust the shirt size you buy.

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