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Posts Tagged ‘ikat’

Well I have been getting a lot of feedback on my newly redesigned master bedroom (thank you for all the nice comments!) and so I thought I’d better get the headboard tutorial up for those of you who are interested in DIY-ing one yourself.  This isn’t so much a tutorial on how to build an upholstered headboard (there are plenty of tutorials out there on that) but more how I handpainted the chevron-ikat pattern onto my plain white headboard fabric.   Since I’d never done anything like this before, I pretty much guessed my way through it so my headboard is far from perfect.  To be honest, I’m thinking about completely repainting it with my leftover fabric.  But, lucky for you, I can walk you through what I did right AND WRONG and you can learn from my mistakes and make yourself something beautiful.  The best part is you can use this fabric painting technique to paint anything, headboards, pillows, chairs, t-shirts, whatever.

Cost: Varies by project.  Mine cost about $18 for the fabric and paint

Supplies:

  • White or other light colored fabric.  I used 2 yards of white cotton twill (from Walmart for $5/yd) for my headboard.  Natural fabrics work best and allow the paint to bleed a little bit.
  • Craft paint in your color choices.  I used a limey green and a tealy blue.
  • Textile Medium.  To mix with the craft paint to make it soft like fabric paint.  (Or you could just save yourself this step and buy fabric paint instead).
  • A medium sized flat/square tipped craft paint brush.
  • A spray bottle with water in it.
  • A water bowl to rinse brushes.

Okay then.  Heres what I did:

1.  I first upholstered my headboard in the white fabric by staple-gunning the fabric around to the back of the padded headboard.  Then I layed my headboard flat on the table to start painting.

2.  Next I got a square tray I had (you could also use a right angle ruler if you have one) and trace the corners of it onto my headboard lightly with chalk.  DON’T use chalk to do this.  It sucked up my paint wherever it was and made some really distinct paint lines that I don’t love on the finished project.  You could try a pencil or just dots of the paint color you’ll be using to give you the guide you need.  I’ll be honest though.  I did this only for the top portion of my headboard and then got lazy and didn’t do it to the rest.  I wish I would’ve though because some of my lines got whompy because I was winging it without a guide.  Thats what I get for being an impatient crafter.

3.  Next, working in small sections, spray the fabric lightly with water.  I would recommend testing the amount of water you need to be spraying with the amount of bleeding you want to get on a scrap piece of fabric before you try this on the real thing.  I didn’t do this and learned as I went.  I got the right hand side of my headboard pretty soaked and then learned that “less is more” and so the left side has less bleeding (which I like better).  You probably only need to spray a section two maybe three times and no more.  You don’t want the lines to become tie-dyed looking, but you do want the colors to bleed slightly into eachother.

4.  Now, holding your brush so that the square tip is on its side (or that the tip of the paintbrush looks like a vertical line), dip your brush into the water and then into the first paint color (after mixing it with the textile medium per the instructions on the bottle).  Then follow your guide using up and down choppy strokes on your fabric.

5.  When you have a section done, switch colors and do the same thing with the next color except push that color into the first color a little bit.  You may have to give it a squirt with the water bottle if the fabric has dried.

6.  The ikat-ness of the design is dependent on how you’re holding your brush so practice first on a scrap piece until you feel like you’re getting the look you want.  Then paint your piece (in my case an upholstered headboard) alternating between wetting the fabric with the squirt bottle and painting on the lines in an up and down stroke.  (You can see in the image below where I wet the fabric too much and the paint bled a little more than I would’ve liked.)

And thats what I did!  I would like it much better I think if I did it again and really took my time.  But, hey, not too shabby for a first try I guess.

Anyway, hope you enjoyed the tutorial!  Learn from my mistakes and go do your own! 🙂

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While at Walmart the other day, I quickly ran through their new-again fabric section.  Can we all collectively say “yay!” for Walmart bringing back the fabric department?!  Anyway, I was about to walk out (I was of course shopping with the boys again and they had already had enough), when I spotted this purple and red chiffon print peeking out of a pile of colorful fleece bolts.  I grabbed it to check it out really quick and loved it even more when I unrolled it a bit and saw the lovely native american-esque pattern.  I know.  I’m sort of becoming obsessed.  It kind of had the same feel as my maxi dress I just did (and LOVE) and when I saw that it was only $1.50 a yard I HAD to have some.  I didn’t know what I was going to do with it, but I got 3 yards and went on my little way.

Well, last night I pulled it out and took a look at it again.  I love the big oversized drapey t-shirts and ponchos I’ve been seeing on Urban Outfitters and Anthropologie and such.  And my new chiffon draped so nicely.  So I drew up a little plan and decided to make a wispy, bohemian, poncho-shirt, or as I like to call it, my shoncho.  🙂

Heres what I did:

Cost: $1.50 (You only need about a yard of fabric for this shirt so check remnant bins to get some great chiffon for CHEAP).

Supplies:

  • About a yard of chiffon fabric (or other lightweight drapey fabric that you love).
  • Scizzors.
  • Pins.
  • Sewing machine.

1.  Refer to my little sketchy plan below.  It basically shows how to do it.

2.  Here are some extra tips.

TIP 1:  BE CAREFUL!  Chiffon is delicate and tears and frays very easily.  So be slow and steady when feeding it through the machine.

TIP 2:  I used the finished edge as the bottom of my shirt so I didn’t have to zigzag the bottom.  If your chiffon piece has a finished edge, utilize it to save you time.

TIP 3:  Don’t forget to zigzag stitch (or serge if you have a serger) the INSIDE seams as well as the outside raw edges so they don’t continue to fray.

And thats it.  This took me less than 30 minutes to throw together.  And I’m pretty happy with it.  🙂  What do you think?  You can make this.  And its great for FAT days.

P.S.  I also made the red necklace and the pink clip-in hair extension.  For more of my jewelry and accessories, see the Fashion Tutorials section on the sidebar. 🙂

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I’ve suddenly become obsessed with making clothes.  I blame it on Pinterest and all the adorable ideas I’ve been exposed to.  In one of my lives (lets pretend we get lots) I would love to be a fashion designer.  *Sigh*  Instead though, I have been breaking out my sewing machine and pretending I’m one.

Don’t get me wrong though.  I seriously am NOT a seamstress.  I know very little about sewing actually and I never follow patterns.  I don’t know if I even know how to read patterns.  I just sketch ideas out as they come or try to figure out how to make things based on other items I’m inspired by.  This is why my little sewing tutorials are relatively easy.  Because I don’t think I could pull of anything much harder.

When I do get the itch to sew something, I usually turn to jersey fabric or a stretchy knit.  This stuff is so easy to work with and doesn’t fray so hemming edges isn’t necessary unless you want it to be.  I went to the fabric store the other day in search of a fun print in a knit to make a maxi dress after becoming obsessed with the kimono style maxi dresses I’d seen on Pinterest and Etsy lately.  I took both my boys, and quickly perused the options in between shoving cookies into my screaming 14 month old and reprimanding my 4 year old for unrolling bolts of fabric down the aisle.  Ugh.  Can I just say how much I HATE shopping with my kids.  By the way, any tips on that matter would be appreciated!  Anyway, I found this colorful, kind of native american-esqu, ikat-ish print that I loved and lucky for me was 40% off.  I got 3 yards for $23.  Enough to make my maxi dress and a little whatever-else-I-feel-like-making later.  Anyway, this is a really easy dress and I’m pretty happy with how it turned out!  Hope you like it and have fun making your own!

Cost:  About $23 or so depending on the fabric

Supplies:

  • 2 and a half yards or so of stretchy knit fabric
  • Coordinating thread.
  • Elastic for waistline.
  • Pins.
  • Sewing machine.
  • Scizzors.

1.  Refer to my little sloppy sketches below that kind of walk you through it.

2.  The sketches pretty much lay it out for you but I’ll give you some extra tips.

  • TIP 1:  Try this on a lot as you go to make sure its fitting you well.  OR, take a maxi or long dress you already own and find the proper length for your new dress from that.
  • TIP 2:  Leave at least 12 inches open at the armholes when you sew up the sides, if you want less of an opening, you can always sew up more of the armhole after you try it on.  P.S.  When sewing, sew right sides together and use a knit stitch (or zigzag stitch) on your machine to allow the fabric to continue to stretch.  Careful not to pull the fabric as you are sewing to avoid rippling.
  • TIP 3:  Cut the neckline by folding the dress in half and cutting a half V on the fold.  This way the neckline will be symmetrical.  Also, cut the neckline pretty conservatively at first.  Since the fabric has stretch it will widen/deepen when you put it on.  You can always cut more from the neckline after you try it on and gauge how deep/wide you’d like it to be.
  • TIP 4:  You can omit the pleating if you’d like along the shoulder area at the neckline.  I just through that on mine for solely decorative reasons.  If you don’t know how to make a pleat, google it.  Its super easy and quickly adds a little “fancy” to any design.
  • TIP 5:  Cut a strip of elastic long enough to wrap around your waistline.  Make it slightly longer than you think you’ll need.  You can always cut the excess off when you’ve sewn it into your dress.  Refer to this post for more tips on sewing in elastic waistlines.

3.  Throw it on when you’re done and accessorize in an oh-so-bohemian-chic kind of way and be proud of your work!

GO DO IT!!  🙂

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