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Knit Skirt to T-Shirt Refashion

Knit skirt to t-shrt refashion tutorial by Skirt Fixation

Today’s quick and easy tutorial walks you through the steps of turning that skirt you no longer wear into a t-shirt you’ll never stop wearing!  The best part?  No hemming!  Let’s make that skirt to t-shirt happen:

Updated Union St. Tee pattern review

Here is the knit maxi skirt I started with.  It’s a cotton/modal/spandex knit blend with some fun stripes at the bottom.  It has a huge elasticated waistband, I think intended to be one of those convertible dress/skirt things.  If you’re like me, those garments always end up being WAAAAAY too narrow in the hips, and I don’t even have that wide of hips!

Knit Skirt to T-shirt Refashion Step 1:

Knit skirt to t-shrt refashion tutorial by Skirt Fixation

First thing I recommend is laying out your pattern pieces over the skirt before making any cuts.  This is so you don’t have any nasty surprises later when you end up with only enough fabric left for 1 sleeve or something!  Ask me how I know…  I’m using the Union St. Tee pattern by Hey June Handmade.  It’s my favorite, read my full review here.

Knit Skirt to T-shirt Refashion Step 2:

Knit skirt to t-shrt refashion tutorial by Skirt Fixation

Alright, now that you have a plan, grab those scissors and get busy!  I cut the skirt up one side seam and cut off that waistband so things would lay flat.

Knit Skirt to T-shirt Refashion Step 3:

Knit skirt to t-shrt refashion tutorial by Skirt Fixation

Next, fold the skirt into the middle, and try to line up the fabric.  This was easy for me due to the stripes!  Line up the bottom of the pattern piece below the hem of the skirt by whatever amount is the seam allowance on the pattern.  For me the pattern piece was 1″ below the skirt in the center.

Knit Skirt to T-shirt Refashion Step 4:

Knit skirt to t-shrt refashion tutorial by Skirt Fixation

Okay, grab those scissors and get busy!  I cut out the front and back.  Next I folded the skirt all the way in 1/2 so I didn’t have a seam down the top of my sleeves, and cut the sleeves.  The neckband did end up with a seam at the center back (which a v-neck usually doesn’t have) but not a big deal!

Knit Skirt to T-shirt Refashion Step 5:

Sew that t-shirt together and put it on!  Once again, I used the Union St. Tee pattern and instructions from Hey June Patterns.  Happy sewing and t-shirt wearing!

Updated Union St. Tee pattern review

By now you probably know that the link to Hey June Patterns is an affiliate link.  That’s because it’s a really awesome pattern and we want you to succeed in your sewing ventures, not get frustrated or fail!  Because it’s an affiliate link, if you click on it, we might make a few pennies at no extra cost to you.  So thanks!

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Contrast Hood Binding Tutorial

Today we’ve got a quick and easy tutorial for you on how to make a contrast hood binding.  This is a fun way to make the inside of the hood pop!  You can use plain fabric for the outside and a pop of print for the inside, or print for the outside and a coordinating pop of solid color for the contrast hood binding and inside.  Or print for both.  Or plain for both!  Let’s get started.

Contrast Hood Binding tutorial from Skirt Fixation

First you need to cut 2 of each hood piece.  (If your hood pattern is lined like the one I used, the Rosemary Raglan affiliate link, just cut and sew as instructed.)  When both your outer and inner hoods are assembled, here’s the fast and easy way to create that contrast hood binding.

Contrast Hood Binding tutorial from Skirt Fixation

Contrast Hood Binding Step 1:

Cut 1 inch off the outer hood along the front edge.  (Most hoods are generously sized, and they will still cover the head adequately after doing this.  But if you are concerned about the size of the hood, you can ADD 1 inch to the front edge of the inner hood as you are cutting it out.

Contrast Hood Binding tutorial from Skirt Fixation

Contrast Hood Binding Step 2:

Place the inner hood over the outer hood, right sides together.  Line up the front edges, even though the hoods are now different sizes.

 

Contrast Hood Binding tutorial from Skirt FixationContrast Hood Binding Step 3:

Sew the front edges together.

Contrast Hood Binding tutorial from Skirt Fixation

Contrast Hood Binding Step 4:

Turn the hood right sides out, and roll the inner hood out along the front edge.  See, instant contrast hood binding.

Contrast Hood Binding tutorial from Skirt Fixation

Contrast Hood Binding Step 5:

To keep the inner fabric from rolling back to the inside, topstitch along the outer hood fabric, just inside the seam line.

Now you can create a contrast hood binding on all your hoodies!  We’d love to see your completed garment if you use our tutorial…leave us a comment below, or send us an email: skirtfixation@gmail.com

To see the fabric sources and the matching hoodie I sewed for myself, head over to CaliFabrics!

Contrast Hood Binding tutorial from Skirt Fixation

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DIY Clothing Labels

DIY Clothing Labels tutorial by Skirt Fixation

It’s time for another Handmade Baby post!  If you sew baby clothes, like me, you will soon discover how fast that little one can grow!  And growing means new clothes.  Plus the old clothes need to be dealt with too!  With all these handmades, and the speed at which the transitions happen, it’s easy to loose track of what size each article of clothing is, even if you’re doing a capsule wardrobe, and have minimized the amount.  Enter DIY clothing labels.

DIY Clothing Labels tutorial by Skirt Fixation

To make 60 DIY clothing labels, cut a piece of fabric 20.5” x 9.25”  Divide this into 1.5” x 2” squares, using a pencil or fabric marking pen.  (We like Mark-B-Gone pens.) affiliate link  Allegra also used this pen to write the numbers on before she began embroidering.

Use Fray Stop (affiliate link) on the edges of the big square.  If you don’t do this little step, you’ll be fighting fraying edges the whole time you are embroidering!

Embroider 1/2 of the tag.  We did the lower half, but you can also do the top half which makes it easer to sew into a seam.  Stay away from the edges of each tag.

You can also write the sizes on the labels with a permanent marker if you don’t know how to embroider or have an in house embroiderer, like we do.  Thanks Allegra!

DIY Clothing Labels tutorial by Skirt Fixation

Cut the rectangles apart.

DIY Clothing Labels tutorial by Skirt Fixation

Fold each rectangle in 1/2 with the right sides touching and sew the sides with a 1/4” or less seam allowance.

DIY Clothing Labels tutorial by Skirt Fixation

Turn the tags right side out.  Push out the corners out so the tag is square.

DIY Clothing Labels tutorial by Skirt Fixation

Fold over the raw edge to the underside, and topstitch across it onto the fabric.

DIY Clothing Labels tutorial by Skirt Fixation

Pivot at the corners and continue top stitching the tag into the garment.

DIY Clothing Labels tutorial by Skirt Fixation

And there you have it!  Tiny baby DIY clothing labels.  Let us know what you do with the clothes your children outgrow…we need suggestions!

DIY Clothing Labels tutorial by Skirt Fixation

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Lace Skirt to Trevi Top Refashion

Lace skirt refashion to a Trevi Top

In my last post I promised a full review on how I refashioned a lace skirt into the Trevi Top.

Lace skirt refashion to a Trevi Top

First of all, here’s the skirt I started with.  It’s lace (crocheted maybe?) and very pretty, but not super flattering to my figure, not long enough, and not really me as is.  So of course I had to refashion it and make it mine!

Because I was afraid the skirt would unravel once I cut into it, I tried to preserve as many of the existing seams as I could.  It seems the original makers of the skirt had the same idea because there was only 1 seam around the skirt, on one side.

The Trevi Top and Dress pattern was a perfect choice for this refashion because the arm and neck openings are bound with bias tape.  The other seams are french seams, leaving no raw edges either.  And the back placket is all enclosed on the edges as well.

Lace Skirt refashion step 1:

Lace skirt refashion to a Trevi Top

I laid out the front pattern piece lining up the bottom of the pattern piece with the hem of the skirt.  Then I carefully cut through 1 layer only across the armhole opening across the shoulder and down the neckline.

Lace Skirt refashion step 2:

Lace skirt refashion to a Trevi Top

I flipped over the front pattern piece and continued cutting the neckline opening, across the other shoulder, and back down the armhole opening, again only through 1 layer of the skirt.

Lace Skirt refashion step 3:

Lace skirt refashion to a Trevi Top

First I folded down the part of the skirt I’d cut out for the front.  Then I laid out the back piece of the Trevi Top and Dress pattern.  I did fold in the amount allowed for the placket up the back.  Then I continued cutting up the armhole opening, across the shoulder and down the back neckline opening.  Then I flipped over the back pattern piece and cut out the other half in the same manner as the front.

Lace Skirt Refashion step 4:

Lace skirt refashion to a Trevi Top

Carefully cutting through the top layer only, I cut up the center back of the skirt which was now looking more like a top!

Lace Skirt Refashion step 5:

Lace skirt refashion to a Trevi Top

The skirt had more width than I wanted the top to have, but I didn’t want to create side seams to take out some of that width after I’d worked so hard to preserve the integrity of the skirt this far!  I used the lining fabric (it was the perfect color, of course) to make both the back plackets and the bias tape for finishing both the arm and neck openings.  Once I had my placket pieces interfaced, I laid them out as you can see above, thus eliminating some of the fullness from the width and preserving the seamless construction.

Sandbridge Skirt sewn and reviewed by Skirt Fixation

After this step, I continued with the instructions for the Trevi Top and Dress.  The only change I made to accommodate the original construction was making only the top button on the back placket functional, and eliminating the need for many buttonholes and cuts!

Sandbridge Skirt sewn and reviewed by Skirt Fixation

I also kept the original waist tie, and by weaving it in and out of the holes at the waist level, I can have another look, slightly more fitted.

Needless to say I’m pretty pleased with this lace skirt refashion!  I only wish I had another lace skirt to play around with!

Lace Skirt to vest refashion by Skirt Fixation

Affiliate links are used in this post.  If you click, we might make a few pennies at no extra cost to you.  

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View B Ruched Tankini Sew Along

Ruched tankini sew along

Today we’re going to sew the ruched tankini front panel on View B of the Grace Tankini.  This is the part that gets the most questions, so we thought a photo tutorial would be helpful.  It’s worth it to make the ruched panel on View B…it’s many people’s favorite part about this view!

Ruched tankini sew along

Step 1:

Cut out the front panel.  As suggested in the Grace Tankini pattern, do not cut it out on the fold, but open up your fabric, cut 1/2 of the piece, flip the pattern piece over and cut the other half.

Ruched tankini sew along

Step 2:

After sewing the gathering stitches on the sides of the ruched front panel, gather it.  It is helpful to lay out your side piece to see how far to gather the front panel.  Start the gathers at the dot, below the notch where the top of the side panel goes.

As stated in the pattern, you can concentrate the ruching wherever you want to!  More ruching=minimization of that area.  Try to keep the gathers even from side to side so they don’t slant diagonally across your body.  End the gathers 1/5” above the bottom of the front panel so it doesn’t sag down across the bottom.  (Apologies for the blurriness of this photo.  It’s the only one I ended up with!)

You can see how I’ve pinned down my side piece to keep it from moving as I gathered the front panel.  When you are finished gathering, the bottom of the front and side will line up.  The top of the side piece will be at the notch of the front panel.

Ruched tankini sew along

Step 3:

Once the front panel is the same length as the side panel (from the notch to the hem,) pin them right sides together.  Gently curve the shape of the front panel and the side piece to match up.

Ruched tankini sew along

Step 4:

Sew the front panel and side piece together.  We’ve found it more helpful to have the ruched front panel down against the feed dogs to help pull the gathers along evenly.

There you have it!  Continue with the instructions to make the rest of the Grace Tankini.

Ruched tankini sew along

Grab your copy of the Grace Tankini here.

Fabric used in this tutorial is from CaliFabrics.

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Sewing the Circle Cut Out in the Grace Tankini

How to sew the circle cut out in the back of your Grace Tankini pattern.

We’ve got a tutorial for you about sewing a circle cut out in the back of the Grace Tankini for View A.  This part is not hard at all and adds such fun to the back!

How to sew the circle cut out in the back of your Grace Tankini pattern.

You could actually use the back pattern piece to add a circle cut out to the back of View B also.  Or use a CD and place it in the center back (between the shoulder blades) of your favorite swimsuit pattern, and use this tutorial to add a circle cut out to the back of your swimsuit!  Once you have cut out the pattern pieces of both your main fabric and your lining or shelf bra, follow this photo tutorial.

How to sew the circle cut out in the back of your Grace Tankini pattern.

Step 1:

Line up the two circles and pin.  The right side of your main fabric will be facing up, and the wrong side of your shelf bra or lining will be facing up.  In other words, right sides together!

How to sew the circle cut out in the back of your Grace Tankini pattern.

Step 2:

Carefully sew around the edges of the circle, using a 1/2” seam allowance.  Stop and adjust the fabric as needed.  It’s easiest if you put your needle down in the fabric and adjust the layers.  Alternately, you can baste, check it, and then sew.  If your fabric is thin and doesn’t have good stability, you might try marking the circle onto the back of the fabric and sewing this step before cutting out the fabric from in the middle.  This will ensure your circle doesn’t end up stretched out of shape.

How to sew the circle cut out in the back of your Grace Tankini pattern.

Step 3:

Snip around the circle, up to but NOT through your line of stitches you just sewed.  This will allow the circle to lay flat.  I’ve found using just the tip of a sharp scissors to be the key here.

How to sew the circle cut out in the back of your Grace Tankini pattern.

Here’s a close up so you can tell how close to go to the stitched circle.

How to sew the circle cut out in the back of your Grace Tankini pattern.

Step 4:

Pull your lining or shelf bra through the hole so it is now on the wrong side of the swimsuit back where it belongs.  Carefully press around the circle to get it to lay flat.

How to sew the circle cut out in the back of your Grace Tankini pattern.

Step 5:

Sew around the circle again with a 1/4” – 3/8” seam allowance.  As you sew, you want to gently roll the lining/shelf bra to the underside so it doesn’t show on the right side when you are finished.

How to sew the circle cut out in the back of your Grace Tankini pattern.

And there you have it!  In the above photo you can see the inside and outside of the circle cut out.  Your circle cut out in the back of a swimsuit is completely finished!  Bring on the sun…

How to sew the circle cut out in the back of your Grace Tankini pattern.

 

Grab your copy of the Grace Tankini here.

Fabric used in this tutorial is from CaliFabrics.

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Modifying the Grace Tankini for Removable Bra Cups

Removable bra cups tutorial from Skirt Fixation

Today we’ve got a special tutorial for you on how to modify the Grace Tankini pattern to allow for removable bra cups.  This is useful for breast cancer survivors who may have mastectomy prosthesis to insert into different bras or swimwear, or to allow for any other inserts.

Grab your copy of the Grace Tankini here.

Let’s get started:

Removable Bra Cups Tutorial

Removable bra cups tutorial from Skirt Fixation

Cut out 2 shelf bra fronts from lining fabric.  They are pictured above at the top right.

Removable bra cups tutorial from Skirt Fixation

Cut the straps off of one of them.  You will do this below the center of the armhole, and across to the neckline, leaving a portion of the neckline intact so you can catch it in the elastic later.

Removable bra cups tutorial from Skirt Fixation

Serge/finish top slanted edges you just cut so they hold up better when inserting and removing bra cups.

Removable bra cups tutorial from Skirt Fixation

 

Sew together the two shelf bra front pieces with a straight stitch down the center, from the neckline center to the bottom center.  See the dotted line in the photo above.  This is to help keep the bra cups in place so they don’t migrate around during wear.

Removable bra cups tutorial from Skirt Fixation

Treat the 2 front layers as 1 as you are sewing the suit following the instructions.

Removable bra cups tutorial from Skirt Fixation

When you assemble the shelf bra into the Grace Tankini, you want the side with the cut off shoulder straps touching your body.  There will be an opening where you cut off the shoulder straps to insert bra cups or mastectomy prosthesis.

Removable bra cups tutorial from Skirt Fixation

From the outside, the suit looks exactly the same!  Above you might notice the other modification made to the Grace Tankini by making it into a cropped two-piece suit!

Two Piece Grace TankiniNow she can transfer her removable bra cups from suit to suit!

This tutorial can be used with any swimsuit pattern that has a shelf bra.  Of course we recommend the Grace Tankini!

Special thanks to tester Tee Bee for photographing this tutorial.

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Bloom & Grow Skirt – Free Girl’s Skirt Pattern!

Free girl's Bloom & Grow skirt pattern from Skirt Fixation

Today we’re excited to release a free girl’s skirt pattern, the Bloom & Grow Skirt.  As in the past few years in July, we’re excited to join in with Simple Simon and Co. for the Skirting The Issue charity sewing event!  We’re releasing another free girl’s skirt pattern, the Bloom & Grow skirt.Free girl's Bloom & Grow skirt pattern from Skirt Fixation

If you want to go straight to download the skirt, click here!

We designed the Bloom & Grow skirt with the growing girl in mind.  This skirt is designed for use with double border print fabrics.  Often, these fabrics feature a floral print.  The extra fullness of this skirt makes it super twirly and the elastic waist is perfect for any growing girl.

Annie is wearing a petticoat underneath this Bloom & Grow skirt to show the fullness!  Because this skirt is not cut across the fabric from selvedge to selvedge like traditional skirts, but down the length of the yardage, it is a very full skirt!

The fabric used for this skirt is Sage Prickly Pear Indigo by Art Gallery Fabrics.  It is a double border print fabric which means the pattern is printed along both sides or selvedges, down the length of the fabric.

Another beautiful double border print fabric you could also use is Garden Walk fabric by Art Gallery Fabrics.

We also designed some floral radiograph double print border fabric, and think it’d be smashing on the Bloom & Grow Skirt!

We’d love it if you use this free girl’s skirt pattern to sew up some skirts for Skirting The Issue.  Read all about Skirting The Issue here.  And then link up your skirts for girls in foster care.

You can also check out our other very popular free girl’s skirt patterns:FREE Dollhouse Skirt pattern from Skirt Fixation.

The Dollhouse Skirt

The Pegasus Skirt, a free pattern from Skirt Fixation

The Pegasus Skirt

So now you can go grab our newest free girl’s skirt pattern: The Bloom & Grow Skirt!

A few affiliate links are used in this post to really beautiful fabric.  If you click on our links, we might make a few pennies…thanks!

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Swimwear Notions & 2 Ways to Sew Elastic into Swimwear

Adding elastic and boning to swimwear, a photo tutorial by Skirt Fixation

This post is all about the notions you need when sewing swimwear.  Grab your copy of the Grace Tankini here.

First let’s talk about elastic.


You want to be sure to use elastic specifically made for swimwear when sewing the Grace Tankini.  Cotton swimwear elastic is stretchier than other elastic, and holds up better to the ravages of chlorine water.  The Grace Tankini pattern uses 1/4″ swimwear elastic on the neckline, armholes, and leg holes.  You can buy it at your local sewing shop, and online.  You can even buy it by the roll on Amazon if you plan to sew a lot of elastic!

The other place elastic is used in the Grace Tankini is on the shelf bra.  Since this width is a little harder to find, you can either use regular 3/4″ elastic, or buy it by the roll on Amazon.

There are 2 ways to sew elastic into swimwear, and we’ve created a video tutorial to show you both ways.  Try them both, and use your favorite method.

The other notion you might use when sewing swimwear is boning.  Boning is useful for giving a shelf bra extra support on the sides.  When there is wrinkling in the bust area on the sides of a garment, that area could benefit from boning.

Prym Dritz Featherlite Twill Boning White

You can buy boning by the package or by the yard at your local sewing store.  Boning often has a cloth cover over a plastic or nylon insert.  Here is how we suggest adding boning to the Grace Tankini:


Adding boning to swimwear, a photo tutorial by Skirt Fixation

Zig zag your side seam allowances to the back of the shelf bra.  By doing this, you create a channel to insert the boning.  Continue with the pattern until you have inserted the underbust elastic.

Adding boning to swimwear, a photo tutorial by Skirt Fixation

If your boning has a cover, pull it back.  Cut your boning to match the length of the channel you created, minus about 1/2″ at the top of the side seam where you will be installing your armhole elastic.

Adding boning to swimwear, a photo tutorial by Skirt Fixation

Slide the boning into the channel.  That’s it!  Finish constructing your Grace Tankini, and forget worrying about having enough support!

Some people consider the notions to be the trickiest part of sewing swimwear, but we’ve made it easy for you with these swimwear notions tutorials.

Grab your copy of the Grace Tankini here.

Some affiliate links are used in this post to supplies we really love and use often.  If you click on one of our affiliate links, we might make a few pennies at no extra cost to you.  Thank you!

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How to Add Bra Cups to a Swimsuit

How to add bra cups to a swimsuit - a video tutorial from Skirt Fixation

Today’s post is all about bra cups.  Grab your copy of the Grace Tankini here.

The Grace Tankini has a shelf bra in both views.  Adding bra cups to the shelf bra gives more stability and support as well as modesty when wet.  First let’s talk about bra cups.

How to add bra cups to a swimsuit - a video tutorial from Skirt Fixation

Bra cups for swimwear come in all different types!  There are several different shapes including inverted u-shape, oval or teardrop.  There are as many different cup sizes as there are for regular bras, but A-DD are the most common.  Swimwear bra cups can be found in a molded poly foam or gel filled, both with a knit covering.  Also, bra cups can be found in white, black, or nude.  Bra cups with enhancing (push up) features can also be purchased.

In choosing what bra cups to use, you should look for a shape and size that matches your bust size and swim fabric.  Be sure the bra cups you purchase include the words “for swimwear” so you can be sure they will not retain water or be damaged by chlorine.

Where to Source Bra Cups for Swimwear

You can purchase bra cups online or in your local sewing store.  As of this post, bra cups cost between $6 and $15.  Some online sources include:

How to add bra cups to a swimsuit - a video tutorial from Skirt Fixation

JoAnn Fabrics Dritz Molded Foam Bra Cups

Amazon

Sew Sassy

Another tried and true method of sourcing bra cups for swimwear is to harvest them from an old or thrift store swimsuit!  They are much cheaper, and in season you can often buy a suit from the thrift store for a dollar or two.  If you source your bra cups from a swimsuit, you can be assured they are intended for swimwear and will hold up to chlorine and not retain water.

How to Add Bra Cups to a Swimsuit

Sewing bra cups in to the Grace Tankini (or any shelf bra swimsuit) is easy and rewarding.  Watch our video below to watch us sew bra cups into the Grace Tankini and listen for all our little tips along the way!

If you’re looking for more support than a shelf bra with sewn in bra cups offers, try this tutorial from Cashmerette.

Also, watch for a tutorial on how to make your bra cups removable, which is useful if you’ve purchased special/expensive inserts (i.e. mastectomy prosthesis) you want to use in several different suits.

Leave us your thoughts about bra cups in the comments below.

Grab your copy of the Grace Tankini here.

Affiliate links are used in this post.  If you click one of our affiliate links, we may make a few pennies at no extra cost to you.  We only like to really great produce we love and recommend!