Sunday, July 1, 2012

Happy Summer

Child halter dress made from men's lg t-shirt

When I was in the 5th grade, one of my school mate's moms put on her own Summer Camp. The only thing I remember was that we tie-dyed white fabric and sewed photo album covers. I don't know where she is today, but each summer when I teach my kids how to tie-dye, I always think of my old 5th grade classmate and that summer I spent at her house.

I'm still learning all the tricks, but here's what we did last week. I made my daughter a dress from a men's large t-shirt. (We get the 4 pack Fruit of the Loom tagless cotton tees inexpensive when they go on sale.) I don't have a pattern. I just cut the sleeves off then sew the raw edges. I added elastic to the back, tie-dyed the whole thing, then added a ribbon to the front for the halter straps.

back view

To get this particular design, first you lay the
t-shirt flat, front side up. Starting from the center, you pinch a bit of shirt and turn clockwise until you've spun the whole thing into a flat spiral-like disk. Secure with rubberbands. This is hard to do because you want to keep it kind of flat-like, not wadded up into a ball. Then dye following the directions on the dye package. We used fuschia and purple dyes.

There are a lot of tutorials on how to re-purpose old t-shirts. I'm sorry I can't add one of my own here. I am really terrible at following patterns. I usually just kind of wing it and hope to not mess it up too badly. As for tie-dying there are also alot of tutorials on that too. You can get so many different patterns as well as techniques. It's so much fun to experiment. It does get really very messy and I'm not exaggerating. So if you're neat and tidy, this may not be for you. The cleanup is a chore. Also note that gloves are necessary otherwise it will stain your fingers.