Tag Archives: homeschool

Super springtime shorts!



Springtime’s coming and it’s time for some new shorts/pants! We made these out of bandanas and they’re both comfy and cool.

This was SUPER simple.

Here’s how to do it.

First you need 2 identical bandanas of the same color and some elastic for the waist band. We used 1.5 inch elastic to have a pretty stable and thick waistband but you could use something smaller if you like.

Take your bandanas and lay them on top of each other so that they exactly match.

laying out bandanas

laying out bandanas

Now fold them in half (both layers together) and place the fold on the left.


You’re going to measure down 10 inches and in 2 inches from the top right side and cut a “J” shape through all 4 layers.

It should look like this.

J shape cut in fabric.

J shape cut in fabric.

Now open up the bandanas and lay them flat like this.


Now sew the two layers together on the J shape on both the left and right sides. We used a zig zag stitch for extra strength. This will be the crotch of the pants so it should be strong.

J shape stitched

J shape stitched

Once you have the two “J” shapes stitched then open up the fabric and line it up with the crotch in the middle.


Now it’s time to stitch the inside of the legs. Start at one end go up to the crotch and turn down to the other leg.

pants with sewn legs

pants with sewn legs

Now we need to add the waistband. Since the bandana comes with a finished edge you can just turn the top waist down about a half inch wider than the elastic you’re using. This will be your casing so it’s important that it’s not too small or the elastic won’t fit inside.

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Stitch the waistband down and  leave a space to feed in your elastic.

Measure your waist and cut your elastic about 1 inch longer. Feed your elastic into the casing using a safety pin in the end to help you.

Once you have your elastic in the casing stitch the elastic pieces together and let them slip back into the casing.


Now stitch up the rest of the casing and try those shorts on!


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My sister and I are making these in 6 different colors!

They’re super comfy.

Make some and send us a picture!


Upcycled Dress! Design your own clothes!



So I’m really interested in making my own clothes and have made a few skirts and tank tops but want to make things that are fancier. My mom said it might be fun to make some new clothes using old clothes. It’s called upcycling! We had so much fun with every part of this project and I’m making tons of stuff so I’ll definitely be posting more projects using this technique soon.

So for this dress we used a women’s size medium tank top. We went to the thrift store and bought a bunch of shirts and tank tops that I liked. My mom’s advice in picking out a good shirt to do this with is that the neck line shouldn’t be too low cut or it will be much harder to modify. Basically no V neck shirts and boat neck shirts should  be discouraged in your first attempt. Just find something you like (even a basic t-shirt is awesome) the fabric of. I liked this one because of the buttons on the front.

Here’s what it looked like when we started.

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The first step was to try it on. My mom helped me to pin the straps temporarily just to make them a little shorter and then pull the sides in and pin them close to my body right under the arms. If you don’t have someone to help you with this you can always take a dress or shirt that fits you really well and lay it flat on top of your project shirt and then use it as a template to pin the sides how you want the new shape to be.

pinned straps and sides

pinned straps and sides

pinned straps

pinned straps

Then I took off the dress and layed it flat on my cutting board. I took my seam ripper which is a little sharp tool that you can use to take the stitches out of clothes. It’s a lifesaver for a project like this. I opened up the seam where the straps were just on the front of the dress and took them off. (you may not have to do this if your shirt doesn’t have straps or if the straps aren’t so far off to the edge of your body)

strap removed with seam ripper

strap removed with seam ripper

Now it’s time to cut the sides of your shirt. We started on the outside of the pin and just gently cut down at an angle so that it eventually met up with the edge of the “skirt”

Hopefully this picture will help you to see what we mean.

dress layed out ready to cut.

dress layed out ready to cut

dress cut from the top down the side.

dress cut from the top down the side.

Now we folded the dress in half and cut the other side to match.

folded over

folded over

cut to match

cut to match

Now it’s time to sew! Turn the shirt inside out and match up the front and back along the new cut lines.

Sew down the sides.

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Now try on the dress and pin the straps on where you would like them. We decided to crisscross the straps in the back on ours. It looks really cool. Once you have your straps on stitch them very carefully back onto the top.

You’re done!

Try it on and enjoy your work. It was SO easy and it’s a great way to make your own clothes without having to start from scratch! This dress cost us $2.00 and I love it!

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Now it’s your turn! Make something and send us a picture. We want to see your creations!

Here’s one my mom made me out of a women’s size large tank top. She didn’t have to take any straps off this one she just pinned it under my arms and sewed the sides. It took her about 10 minutes.

before- tank top

before- tank top

after- tank top dress!

after- tank top dress!

I love it!

I love it!

Valentines Cards- who do you love?



My cousin Demi is visiting from Florida and she loves doing crafts as much as I do. We decided since Valentines Day is on Friday that we’d make cards for our family.

We used little fabric scraps, plain white cards, and pellon fusible webbing to make fabric stickers for our cards. It was super easy and REALLY fun.

The first step is to iron some Pellon onto your scrap of fabric.


Then you want to draw a design or you could just free cut a design in your fabric.

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Place it on your card and iron it down.


That’s it!!

You could stitch on top of the design with your sewing machine but we just left them the way they were. We did add some stickers to a few of the cards and that looked good too.

We made a ton of these for our grandparents, each other, and all our friends.


Superhero Capes!


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My sister loves to pretend she’s a superhero and so do I. She made up a name for herself called “Super Turtle Marin” because she loves turtles. I call myself “Wonder Woman” or “Wonder Tenney”. We decided it would be fun to make our own capes and it was SUPER easy. My mom helped us to decorate them a little using the same appliqué technique we learned in the Hawaiian Inspired Applique pillow tutorial we posted a while back.

For this project you need

1/2 a yard of your favorite fabric.

Scraps of coordinating fabric if you choose to decorate it.

Pellon Fusible Webbing – lightweight (if you’re decorating your cape)

Begin by cutting your cape fabric.

For a smaller cape like the one we made for my sister you want to cut the fabric 11 inches across at the neck, 18 inches at the bottom and 18 inches long. We measured 3.5 inches in from the edge of our rectangle of fabric and lined up our ruler to the bottom. Once you cut it you have a really clean diagonal line. Do it on both sides to create the triangle shape. For a longer cape we suggest 24 inches long but really you can make this fit your body so any length is great.

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measuring in 3.5 inches

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cape after cutting

Now we have to hem the edges. For this part you need to use an iron. Get a grown-ups help. On the sides and bottom you need to fold over the fabric 1/4 inch and iron it down. Then do the same thing and iron it again. You won’t see any raw edges on your project this way. You can use this technique (called hemming) on tons of projects. On the top of the cape you’re going to basically do the same thing by folding over 1/4 inch and ironing down, but the second time you fold over you should fold it down 1 inch so that you make what’s called a casing. It’s just a long tube that you can insert your tie or neck strap into later.

regular hemmed edge- folded over twice.

regular hemmed edge- folded over twice.

casing edge

casing edge- folded over twice

Once you have everything folded over and ironed you need to stitch all around the cape.

preparing to stitch the casing edge.

preparing to stitch the casing edge.

Once you have your cape stitched you need to make a neck strap so you can wear it. You could use just a bit of ribbon or a shoelace but we decided to make our own  so we could show you how to make your own binding tape.

We cut a piece of fabric 2 inches wide and 25 inches long. We used the extra bit of our fabric to make this so it just happened to be 25 inches, if yours is a bit shorter or longer that’s no big deal.

binding tape

binding tape

Now using your iron fold one side half way up and iron it down, then fold the other side to match the first and hem down.

folded halfway up

folded halfway up

Once you have both sides folded in then you fold both sides together. It hides all the raw edges inside the binding tape. All you need to do it to press it down and stitch it down the edge.

stitching binding tape

stitching binding tape

Once that’s done you need to feed it through your casing on the cape and try it on!

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We used the techniques of using appliqué to place pellon fusible web on some scrap fabric and then ironed it on to my sisters cape. I told you she’s obsessed with turtles. My mom made a turtle to put on her cape.

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my sister “super turtle”photo 4       photome "flying" with my capeme “flying” with my cape

No Sew Rag Dolls! Perfect easy craft for a snowy day!


So this morning my mom told me that there is a huge snowstorm that’s covering most of the middle and eastern united states. We live in Los Angeles so we never get snow except for in the mountains, but I dream of living in a snowy place someday. Mom told me that kids in states where it snows get “snow days” on days like these. You’re so LUCKY!

We thought we might give you a little craft that you can do with just scrap fabric around the house since you may be stuck inside for a while. Make a few of these after you warm up from making your snowman or sledding!

Enjoy and stay warm!


(mom apologizes for the sound quality. she accidentally covered up the microphone for a few seconds a couple times! oops!)

Valentines Placemats- quilt as you go!



So today’s post is really exciting because I want to teach you a technique called “quilt as you go.” In our example we made a placemat but you could use this technique to make a table runner or a baby blanket, really whatever you want. It’s super easy and really fun.  We also did the binding (the finishing edge around the placemat) with a fun and easy technique so with these little tips you can make TONS of stuff!

The materials you need for this project are

fabric for the back of the placemat 10.5 inches by 17.5 inches

strips of fabric for the top cut 10 inches long by various widths. (we bought 6 different fabrics for the top and bought 1/4 yard of each and were able to make 6 placemats)

batting to place in-between – 10 inches by 17 inches

Let’s get started!

First cut your back fabric 10.5 inches by 17.5 inches


Then lay your batting on top with the right side (colored side) down on the table. There should be a 1 inch border all around the batting.


Now you get to have some fun and be creative!

Chose a strip to start with and place it at the edge of the batting and pin all three layers together.

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Sew the first strip on (sewing all three layers together) 1/4 inch in from the edge.


Now take your second strip and lay it down right sides together on the left edge of the first strip and pin.


Sew down the edge 1/4 inch (sewing through all layers) and then press open.

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Continue the same way sewing on your strips until you get all the way across to the end of the batting.

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Once you have your strips on it’s time to finish the edge.

This is a super simple way to bind your placemat. You will need a grownups help for this because you need the iron. Iron the raw edge of your back fabric up 1/4 inch and then fold it over and iron it again. (it will now be coming over the edge of the placemat)

IMG_9025 IMG_9026 IMG_9027 the picture on the left shows the first fold over-

Once you have the edges ironed you need to stitch them down. Start in the middle of one of the sides of the placemat and stitch down your binding next to the edge. When you get close to the corner stop and get ready to make the turn. You want a nice mitered edge (which means it looks like a diamond) so you take the fabric, pull it to the side into a triangle and fold it up. Then fold over the right edge and fold up the bottom edge.

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now you can finish stitching down to the end and very carefully turn the corner.

Do the same thing on all four corners and you’re done!!!


You can use these techniques for all kinds of things. Make something and send me a picture for our creation gallery!

Make a Pillowcase!



On our trip to Hawaii we visited an awesome Fabric Mart

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They had so much Hawaiian fabric it was almost impossible to choose. I wanted it all!

My mom let my sister and I pick out something and we decided we would figure out what to make with it later. Funny thing is that out of the 1000’s of fabrics there we chose the same one, just different colors of the same pattern.

Once we got home we were trying to think of what to make and after I made my Hawaiian Applique Pillow for my bed I realized that we should make a new pillowcase to go with it too!

We found the best tutorial from Missouri Star Quilt Company on how to make a really awesome but super simple pillowcase and we tried it out!

Here’s our attempt.

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We love the tutorials at Missouri Star Quilt Company. They’re so easy to follow so instead of posting our own directions we think you should use theirs.