My T-Shirt Loot (and Pink Super Hero Boots!)

I’ve been working on some new knit sewing patterns and I’ve destroyed almost every knit t-shirt, shirt, and dress we have in the process! I was browsing through Marshall’s yesterday and I found about 20 t-shirts on the clearance rack that I could NOT do without….all $3 and $4.
My T-Shirt Loot (and Pink Super Hero Boots!) via lilblueboo.com
I’m working on compiling all of my tricks for sewing knits with a regular sewing machine (you know it is hard!) Here is a sneak peek at what I’m working on:
My T-Shirt Loot (and Pink Super Hero Boots!) 2 via lilblueboo.com

I had to include this photo. Sienna in a recycled knit dress….with her pink “super hero” boots. She wears them in the 115 degree weather…usually walking around the yard in the buff. I wish I could pull these off…..
My T-Shirt Loot (and Pink Super Hero Boots!) 3 via lilblueboo.com

Little Lined Zipper Pouch

I avoid zippers and button holes like the plague. But I saw this tutorial over at Skip to My Lou and thought she made it look easy! I used some leftover scraps from Sienna’s Sweet Dress and some hot pink Hawaiin fabric for the inside. Sienna thinks it is her new “purse” and I gave her some coupons and VIP shopping cards to keep in it.

Little Lined Zipper Pouch via lilblueboo.com

If you are scared of zippers, try it!

The Sweet Dress

I love this pattern so much I had to share it. It is The Sweet Dress by Leila and Ben. You can get the pattern at You Can Make This.
The Sweet Dress via lilblueboo.com

It is a simple peasant style dress with elastic neck and arms. I made the 3T size. (Sienna measured 37″ tall today at the doctor!) It was really easy to sew and would be great for a beginner. The hardest part was all the ironing at the beginning….but I like that the instructions had all the ironing in one step!
The Sweet Dress 2 via lilblueboo.com
I picked this starfish fabric up at Joann’s (the side says it was designed and made exclusively for them so I think that is the only place you can get it). I loved the bright beachy colors….so perfect for summer! 

The Sweet Dress fabric via lilblueboo.com

Sundress Showcase….Updated!

Christie over at Secret Stitch Club sent me a link with the dress she made! Thanks Christi! I LOVE the use of the purple flower!

Sundress Showcase Updated via lilblueboo.com

Candace made this red, white and blue dress for the Fourth of July! You can see the other cute photos at her blog!
Sundress Showcase Updated 2 via lilblueboo.com

Photo from Sparkle Power
Brandi sent me this link at her blog My Mountain Morning with her cute version of the dress below:
Sundress Showcase Updated 3 via lilblueboo.com

Stacy made this dress that doubles as a shirt for her older daughter!

Photos from With Great Joy
Here is Stéphanie’s dress! I don’t know any French so I can’t read her post but I LOVE the little detail she put on the back!

Sundress Showcase Updated 6 via lilblueboo.com

Photo from R. Connection

Send me photos of your finished dresses and I’ll add them to this post and link back to you! I love to see finished projects and sharing all the different fabric combinations with other readers!

Recycled T-Shirt Ruffle Skirt/Skort ePattern

I am so excited to introduce my Recycled T-Shirt Ruffle Skirt/Skort ePattern (6M to 5T). It is a 20-page PDF complete with 41 images and drawings to walk you step by step through making your own ruffle skirt or skort out of a men’s t-shirt.
Recycled T-Shirt Ruffle Skirt/Skort ePattern via lilblueboo.com
My original PDF tutorial includes:
:: Easy to follow step-by-step instructions and measurements to draft a pattern ranging from size 6M to 5T (pattern is very adaptable to all sizes)
:: 20 pages of easy to follow step-by-step complete sewing instructions
:: 36 full color images, diagrams and drawings to demonstrate pattern specifics
:: Bonus instructions for embellishing a matching top (5 full color images)
This pattern will become your little girl’s favorite! You can make a skirt or a skort. My daughter is SO active that skorts are crucial….built-in bloomers! It is one of my favorites to make my daughter and it only takes about an hour from start to finish! My friends love it too! Recycling t-shirts is not only an economical way to make clothing for children, but also an easy way to make comfortable, soft clothing that you could never find in a store!
My friends Shari (Happy Chickadee) and Lisa (ElleBows) helped me with the testing and provided amazing feedback and tips to ensure that it is the perfect ePattern! Both of them are huge fans of the finished pattern! Thanks so much to them for helping me!


Now for the even BETTER announcement (if you’ve read this far!):
ePattern GIVEAWAY to one lucky blog reader!
All you have to do to enter is leave a comment and I’ll randomly pick a winner this Thursday!
  • Make sure to leave your email address in your comment as well so that I can email you the PDF pattern if you are the winner!
  • Extra entry for all followers….just leave an extra comment letting me know!
  • Enter before this Thursday, July 16th at midnight (eastern time).
  • I’ll announce the randomly generated winner on Friday!

Sewing on Vacation……

We are finally home from my in-law’s house in Tahoe. We had such a great time relaxing, cooking, swimming, watching movies, kite flying, golfing…..and even sewing!

My sisters-in-law, Jen and Carolyn, wanted sewing lessons so we went to the Walmart in Reno one day and picked up two Singer Simple sewing machines, fabric and all the accessories they would need to start!

Each day during naptime we sat down and worked on a sewing project. We started with the simplest of tasks like threading the machine and by the end of the week they were able to make some of their own patterns! Both of them are expecting babies in January so they are so excited to start making some baby clothes! Jen even made a difficult pair of tiny baby booties (pattern here).
Sewing on Vacation via lilblueboo.com

Jen and Carolyn hard at work making Tinkerbell skirts

Sewing on Vacation tinkerbell skirt via lilblueboo.com

Jen and Sienna (modeling the Tinkerbell skirt and applique shirt Aunt Jen made for her!)

Sewing on Vacation tinkerbell applique via lilblueboo.com

Closeup of the cute Tinkerbell applique

Sewing on Vacation Cars applique via lilblueboo.com

Carolyn’s son Jordan (my nephew) with a Cars applique shirt she made

Sewing on Vacation Cars applique shirt via lilblueboo.com

Carolyn made these pajama pants by tracing and making a pattern from an existing pair of Jordan’s pajama pants!
I was able to do a little sewing of my own. My mother-in-law Gale cut off some jeans and I took her scraps and made some distressed denim gauchos for Sienna. I took the two legs and cut a “J” shape into them:

Sewing on Vacation denim gauchos before via lilblueboo.com


Then I added an elastic waist. Below are the finished gauchos. Super simple.

Sewing on Vacation denim gauchos after via lilblueboo.com

Here are a few of my favorite photos from this year’s trip:
Sewing on Vacation Brett and Boo via lilblueboo.com

My husband and daughter flying a kite on the seawall near our house

Sewing on Vacation Boo Firestation via lilblueboo.com

Sienna hanging out with the North Tahoe Fire Department

Sewing on Vacation Boo and Brett via lilblueboo.com

Watching the sunset

Sewing on Vacation Boo and Grampa via lilblueboo.com

My father-in-law and Sienna playing in the sand after dinner

Sewing on Vacation Brett and Ashley via lilblueboo.com

Attending a friends’ wedding at nearby Squaw Valley

Sewing on Vacation scenery via lilblueboo.com

Strange roadside sculpture on the side of the road (Red Mountain, i.e. in the middle of nowhere)

Sienna taking a potty break on the ride home! I love the billboard in the background and that she looks like she is hitchhiking…..too funny.

4th of July T-shirt Toddler Skirt

You can make this easy toddler skirt and shirt out of any t-shirt that features patriotic colors!  I made it using freezer paper stencils and applique. If you have a little boy you could make shorts using my t-shirt pants tutorial… just shorten the inseam!

4th of July T-shirt Toddler Skirt via lilblueboo.com

Here is the t-shirt that I started with. I picked it up at Target in the pajama section recently when I couldn’t find anything for Sienna to wear for the 4th of July. I used the medium size.
4th of July T-shirt Toddler Skirt  step 1 via lilblueboo.com
You can follow my recycled t-shirt tutorial here but see below because I added a few steps for this skirt. I cut the shirt 11 inches up for the skirt portion….and JUST missed the design.
4th of July T-shirt Toddler Skirt  step 2 via lilblueboo.com
I found a great tutorial for freezer paper stencils by Dana at Made. (For those of you that know me I LOVE goldfish and go through a few bags a week. Check out the pants she made and you’ll see why I love them so much.)
I made some stars on the computer and laid them out in different sizes. Then I traced them onto freezer paper.
4th of July T-shirt Toddler Skirt  step 3 via lilblueboo.com
Here is my stars template to save you some time! Stars
After cutting out the stars in the freezer paper, I ironed the stencil onto the bottom portion of the shirt (soon to be skirt).
4th of July T-shirt Toddler Skirt  step 4 via lilblueboo.com
I painted three coats of white fabric paint onto the stencils. Make sure to put a layer of freezer paper in between your skirt layers so the paint doesn’t bleed through! My paint dried much faster when I put the skirt outside to dry between layers.
4th of July T-shirt Toddler Skirt  step 5 via lilblueboo.com
The finished paint stars!
4th of July T-shirt Toddler Skirt  step 6 via lilblueboo.com
I don’t have photos of the next steps because they are in my other tutorial linked above, but I cut out different size stars from the design portion of the t-shirt and then used applique to attach them to the skirt. Finally, I created the waist band.
Note: I used lightweight fusible interfacing behind the stars to help stabilize when sewing (just like in my other t-shirt skirt tutorial). If you use this exact same t-shirt, you’ll notice that the printing on the front is like a “no slip” grip finish, seriously. I had to really guide my stars through the sewing machine because the foot wouldn’t move very easily! I actually sewed the t-shirt stars on from the reverse side!
Here is a close-up of the finished skirt. The applique stars and the painted stars make a great combination!
4th of July T-shirt Toddler Skirt  step 7 via lilblueboo.com
Here is the back of the skirt. I did one large applique star and the painted stars peek around from the front.
4th of July T-shirt Toddler Skirt  step 8 via lilblueboo.com
I made another large applique star for the front of this white tank top and then 4 other little stars for the front and the back of the tank. I cut out my large star so the word FREEDOM was at the top.
4th of July T-shirt Toddler Skirt  step 9 via lilblueboo.com
Sienna in her patriotic outfit! We’re ready for the 4th of July now!
4th of July T-shirt Toddler Skirt  step finished via lilblueboo.com
4th of July T-shirt Toddler Skirt  step finished back via lilblueboo.com

You can use this same tutorial to make an outfit for any occasion or holiday! Just pick a t-shirt with the right color scheme!

Border Fabric Sundress Tutorial

DIY border fabric sundress sewing tutorial via lilblueboo.com
Fabrics with a border at the bottom or top can define a dress! The fabric I used for this little sun dress is Pod Posey Border from Michael Miller. I decided not to hem the dress and left the white selvage border at the bottom because I love the contrast it gives to the dress (and there was no writing on this selvage side). I’ve included the tutorial for the dress below. It is only a 30-45 minute project! Make sure to add your finished dress to the Lil Blue Boo Flickr Gallery!
DIY border fabric sundress sewing tutorial 2 via lilblueboo.com
Here is the fabric before cutting. Both sides have the border. I bought a ton of this fabric last summer because I was planning to make a bed skirt for my daughter’s crib with it. I had to find another use for it because she is no longer in a crib! I might even make a skirt for myself with it.
Step 1: Cut out your fabric pieces:
DIY border fabric sundress sewing tutorial step 1 via lilblueboo.com
Cutting your main piece you may need to add extra width in order to match the pattern:
DIY border fabric sundress sewing tutorial step 2 via lilblueboo.com
Using sections of the fabric without the border, cut the chest band piece and the strap pieces:
Note: If your fabric has NO stretch at all or you are sewing for a child under 12 months old, you might want to add another 1″ to your chest band measurement (i.e. 7″ x chest measurement plu 2.5″). This will give you some extra breathing room…especially for those roly poly bellies!
DIY border fabric sundress sewing tutorial step 3 via lilblueboo.com
Step 2: For your main piece, match the pattern and sew up the side with 1/4″ seam and finish the edge.
DIY border fabric sundress sewing tutorial step 4 via lilblueboo.com
Open the main piece up to the right side and iron your seam to make sure you have matched the pattern properly.
DIY border fabric sundress sewing tutorial step 5 via lilblueboo.com
Step 3: Fold the chest band in half (right sides together) and sew the shorter sides together using a 1/4″ inseam. Then, press the seam open with iron.
DIY border fabric sundress sewing tutorial step 6 via lilblueboo.com
Fold the chest band in half and iron the fold.
DIY border fabric sundress sewing tutorial step 7 via lilblueboo.com
Open the chest band up and the fold both sides inward to the middle. Iron the folds.
DIY border fabric sundress sewing tutorial step 8 via lilblueboo.com
Fold both sides closed and iron.
DIY border fabric sundress sewing tutorial step 9 via lilblueboo.com
Step 4: Mark the middle, back and sides of the main dress piece with safety pins or chalk.
DIY border fabric sundress sewing tutorial step 10 via lilblueboo.com
Sew all the way around the top of the main dress piece about 1/4″ from the edge using your longest stitch setting (about a 6 or 7). You will use this stitching to create the gathering in the ruffle. I like to overlap the beginning and end of this stitch line (but don’t sew over the other!) so there isn’t a gap in the gathering where the threads end. Be careful when pulling your thread through and work in small increments or you might break the thread! Gather the fabric until you get it to be the same width as your chest band. Tie off your thread.
DIY border fabric sundress sewing tutorial step 11 via lilblueboo.com
Step 5: Mark the front middle, back middle and sides of the chest band with pins.
Match the pins of the chest band to the pins of the gathered main dress piece at the front, back and sides. Slip the main dress piece up into the chest band about 1/2″ and pin in place.
DIY border fabric sundress sewing tutorial step 13 via lilblueboo.com
In between the pins, make sure that the gathered fabric is spaces evenly and add more pins around the dress to keep the gathering in place.
DIY border fabric sundress sewing tutorial step 14 via lilblueboo.com
Step 6: Sew on top of the chest band about 1/8″ above the main dress piece to attach. Sew all the way around periodically straightening the dress piece.

DIY border fabric sundress sewing tutorial step 15 via lilblueboo.com
Step 7: Take your small 1.5″ x 11″ pieces and turn them into bias tape. Use the tutorial from my pillowcase dress post if you haven’t done this before!
DIY border fabric sundress sewing tutorial step 16 via lilblueboo.com
Fold in the ends of the bias tape.
DIY border fabric sundress sewing tutorial step 17 via lilblueboo.com
Sew the bias tape all the way around edges so that each piece of fabric becomes a dress strap.DIY border fabric sundress sewing tutorial step 18 via lilblueboo.com
Step 8: Pin 2 straps to the inside front and pin 2 straps to the inside back of the dress chest band so that they hang about 1/2″ down into the dress. The spacing from the middle will depend on your child’s size, but I pinned Sienna’s 2.75″ from the middle for the front and 2.25″ from the middle for the back.
DIY border fabric sundress sewing tutorial step 19 via lilblueboo.com
Sew 1/8″ down from the top of the dress to attach the 4 straps all the way around.
DIY border fabric sundress sewing tutorial step 20 via lilblueboo.com
And you are done! The straps tie into bows above each shoulder.
Just a note: you can use any fabric for this dress….I was just inspired by the “border” fabric. Two contrasting fabrics would work well for the chest band and an added border at the bottom of the dress!
Here is Sienna wearing her new dress! Feel free to email me if you have questions or get stuck on my tutorial! Click here to see the gallery of photos that other readers have sent me!
DIY border fabric sundress sewing tutorial finished via lilblueboo.com
DIY border fabric sundress sewing tutorial finished 2 via lilblueboo.com

Big Sister/Little Sister Pillowcase Dresses

These pillowcase dresses were made for a friend’s daughters. I used Naptime Crafts’ tutorial here. I had to guess on their sizes and Naptime Crafts’ had all the measurements I needed!
Big Sister/Little Sister Pillowcase Dresses via lilblueboo.com
Both fabrics I got from Joann’s. The ribbon I think I picked up at Michael’s a while ago.
Big Sister/Little Sister Pillowcase Dresses 2 via lilblueboo.com
I made bias tape to match the bottom fabric band.
Big Sister/Little Sister Pillowcase Dresses 3 via lilblueboo.com
I rarely make bias tape because I think it is such a pain…..BUT I came across this easy tutorial at Creative Little Daisy. I feel like it is a big secret everyone has been keeping from me! It is by far the best sewing trick I’ve come across YET. If you think you have one to beat it let me know ;)
Big Sister/Little Sister Pillowcase Dresses 4 via lilblueboo.com
Here is Sienna modeling the larger size of the dress. She’s getting a little better at posing….she’ll actually look at the camera now!
Big Sister/Little Sister Pillowcase Dresses 5 via lilblueboo.com

Sewing for myself!

This is huge for me. I sew clothes for my daughter and other children all the time, but this is FIRST time I’ve ever sewn anything for myself. Please excuse the photos….I was straight out of the pool……
Sewing for myself via lilblueboo.com

I followed Rae’s Spring Ruffle Top Tutorial on Sew Mama Sew but made a few changes:
1. Obviously I left off the ruffles. I also omitted the “arm divots” in the tutorial.
2. For the shoulder straps and top band I folded the fabric in half, opened it up and folded the ends in so that they were 4 layers thick and then topstitched all the way around. This made the shoulder straps a little narrower and I made the top band a little wider to compensate for the extra fold.
3. I made the top slightly larger so that it was “billowy” (if that is a real word).
Sewing for myself via lilblueboo.com

I used just a plain white myslin. My husband says it looks like a nighty……but I might wear it EVERYDAY with my jean cutoff staples!
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