Hopes and Seams

Crafts, refashions, and sewings to DIY my way through life

Archive for the month “November, 2011”

The Skinny on Skinnies

MATERIALS NEEDED: pants to skinnify, marking pen, pins, sewing machine with coordinating thread.

I have these pants that my sister found for $1. I never wear them because they make me....well....you can see for yourself in the picture. 😦 sigh. It's such a shame because the waist and length are perfect, but they make me feel like a man.

SO...I laid those babies out on the floor inside out...

....and lay some existing skinnies directly on top. Matching up the outside seams, I used a fabric pen to trace where the inside seams of my skinnies fell. If you're doing this, you'll want to look at your own pants and see which seam will be best to take in; usually there is one that has a thick decorative seam, and another that lies flat. If your outside seam is the flat one, then I would bring that seam in rather than the inside seam.

(sorry bad picture) see the line? After this, I pinned one of the legs up with pins...

...and tried it on (yep, inside out!), adjusting where the fabric was pulling too tightly.

Starting at the crotch, I sewed down the new inner seam.

After trying it on one more time to make sure it fit the way I wanted, I cut the excess fabric, and zigzag stitched over the unfinished edge so that the fabric wouldn't fray.

I folded the pants in half and marked the other leg up (do you see the blue line?). I did it this way to make sure my two legs were symmetrical. Repeat the process on the other side (starting at the crotch, sew down the leg, cut excess fabric. Check to see if they fit and both legs are even)

and heeeyyyyyy~~

New skinny pants! 🙂 I still look dumpy, but....LESS dumpy, right?? 🙂 hehee.

so. many. tutorials!


Leather Obi Belt

Materials needed: 1/4 yard of leather or pleather, 1/8 yard of coordinating silk or rayon, thread and machine, some silly posing skillzz

Step 1: PATTERN. Grab some newspaper and cut it to the length you want your belt, plus a half inch. My pattern measured about 24 inches. Then, fold the paper into fourths, and cut it into the shape you want. (Having it folded will ensure that the belt is symmetrical). I wanted mine to be like a long oval, so I cut it the way you see in the picture, but you could also do it in a rectangle, or other shape.

Open it up and hold it up on your body to make sure you like it. It's ok if it's a bit big because you will lose half an inch for the seams. YYEaaah your pattern is DONE 🙂

Step two: LEATHER FACE. Fold your pattern in half, fold your leather in half, and lay them on top of one another with the folded edges lined up with one another. Carefully cut the leather around your paper pattern.

Repeat this with another piece of leather sooo...

...you've got two symmetrical leather pieces (for the front and back). Cool the leather cutting is DONE! 🙂

Step three: TIES. Take that 1/8 yard of silk or whatever you got and cut it in half, length-wise. (This pic is really misleading. It shouldn't look as skinny as this -__- sorryy)

Take one piece and fold it in half, length wise again, so it's a long strip. Sew down the raw long edge...

...but when you get to the end, sew down the short edge at a 45 degree angle...

...like so. This will give us pretty points at the ends of our bow 🙂 Backtack right there (backtack means to sew backwards a few stitches, then forward again to secure the thread from coming loose), and repeat for the other strip

Grab a pen or knitting needle or some similarly long rod like object, and flip those strips inside out...

...and tada! Two ties for our belt 🙂

Step four: PUTTING IT ALL TOGETHER. ooohhh k! So, make a sandwich - leather (right side facing in), two ties (with raw edge sticking out, one on each side), and leather (right side facing in). I know, it's a crazy inside out sandwich, but just trust me on this!

So it looks like this, ok?

Start by sewing down one of the ties...

...and keep sewing around - sew down the long edge (being VERY CAREFUL not to sew any other part of the ties down!!!), sew down the other tie, and sew back around the other long edge (keep those ties out of the way!), BUT leave an opening, about the length of your hand. Backtack!


It looks like a pizza pocket?

Any way, stick your hand in that opening and grab the two ties, and pull them out carefully. Gently coax out the rest of belt until it is flipped inside out. Yes, it will feel like this brown thing is literally giving birth, but it will turn into...

...this almost-belt-crab-looking-thing! Hand stitch the opening closed using an invisible stitch (youtube this).

To make it decidedly more belt-like, topstitch around the belt.

It will look like this! Better, right?

Lay the leather on your waist, wrap the ties around your back, pull them back to the front and tie a knot...

...and you've got a super cool new obi belt! I love the pointed edges on the knot.

Wear with that pretty dress you have. 🙂 Have fun!


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