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Recycle Those Pillowcases, Girls!

I’m a thrifter.  I love thinking outside the box and have been recycling, or upcycling, or repurposing old clothes or sheets or parts of clothes for a very long time.  Once I made Emily and myself skirts from a pair of Jason’s khaki’s he had cut off…and I’ve even stooped to make myself workout shirts out of Jason’s old pitted out white-T’s, cutting out the pits, obviously

But let me tell you, old sheets and pillowcases are the best!  I have yellow and white checked gingham pajama pants from my Grandpa’s sheets, cornflower blue with rose bud pajama bottoms from 1974 (the sheets from my childhood bed), and when Em was little I used two of my favorite pillow cases to make her a sun top and super wide-legged flare bottom pants.

In 1993 when we got married, Ralph Lauren bedding was ALL THE RAGE 😉  No, but really, every. single. piece. of. bedding. we. had. was prepster, for sure.  Remember when mixing plaid and floral and stripes and solids and paisley’s was super cool?  And then when Ralph was mixing up the patterns with rustic western themes, this Arizona girl got all giddy and bought up some o’dat.  Mixed up on our old 4-poster log bed and it was very Taos-esque, Southwesternish, even in the Midwest.

About 9 years ago I made a pillowcase skirt by simply cutting off the end which is sewn shut, folding it over twice, about an inch in width, sewing it and lacing it with a drawstring.  I stitched an antique handkerchief onto it…dang that thing was cute…I think I recently gave it away…anyway…

I’ve had these pillowcases forever and have wanted to use them to make a skirt or dress but they have just been sitting in my pile…for a very long time.  But, with Spain around the corner, and my goal being to wear a sundress almost every day, I thought why not whip one up?

Here goes (hope you are easily able to follow along with the instructions):

Pick your favorite pillowcase.  This is circa 1993, old school Ralph Lauren bedding, probably from his Taos collection 😉  Oh, and it’s a KING SIZE case, which gives you ample length with which to work.

Fold the pillowcase in half length-wise (so it’s narrow)  Use scissors or your handy dandy cutting mat and fabric slicer to cut the sewn end of the case off.

Sorry, I don’t know why this one is horizontal, but then turn the pillowcase inside out and use the natural fold, as well as the seam as your guide.

Fold the fabric over one inch, the part that will be the top of the dress.  The cuff or ruffle on a pillowcase will be your natural hem at the bottom.  

Find a random piece of good elastic in your sewing box, or actually buy some for this project.  I happened to have a piece that, when pulled taught, was the exact width of the pillowcase, so decided to try it and see if it would work.  I kind of wing it like that…but it worked, so you can follow these instructions 😉  

At the natural seem, with one inch of the material folded over but not sewn down, sew one end of the elastic on securely with a zig zag stitch.

Then, pull it tightly and sew the other end to the natural fold on the opposite side of the pillowcase.

I have a base on my machine that can be removed for sleeves…remove that if you have the option, but otherwise, fold the elastic over one more inch and pull it taught with both hands, guiding it slowly through a straight stitch on your machine.  DO NOT SEW THRU THE ELASTIC BUT NEXT TO IT, so you are creating a pocket, basically, for the elastic.  (Sorry, I’m not sure I’m a “technical” writer…)

On the front side of the top hem, you will have one seam from sewing the twice folded one inch roll all the way around.  I then wanted to stitch a few rows of thread on the top front edge for a little extra touch.
***Note, when I tried it on, it was a little loose, so, tomorrow when I have a few minutes, I am going to pinch one inch on either side of the top hem, probably centered over each breast, one, to make it stay up better, and two, to bring some of the poofiness that is going on in the back around to the front to add dimension, if that makes sense???

Add a belt and some boots, and a partial afro since I haven’t used a blow dryer all summer but am trying to be “natural”, and there you have it.  A pillowcase dress in less than 20 minutes, but that I’ve had hanging around for 20 years in the linen closet.  I’m taking this little number to Spain to eat tapas and drink wine with mi esposo.

Some Friday FUN!

Below you will find a quiz.  It’s a language quiz.  And by “language quiz” I mean, it’s the language of my 2 year old son, Ryan.  A language I am expected to interpret and act upon every day.

Let’s be honest, it’s more like a game of MadGab, but I want to remember his sweet words at this stage in his life, so thought it would be fun to make it into a test for everyone else.  Don’t worry, I’m recording some of this, too, and will post those later next week so you can hear how sweet it is.

In the comments section, answer as many of the questions you can with one guess/translation per question.  I will keep this open until Tuesday, September 25th at midnight Mountain time.  The person with the most correct answers wins a pair of sterling and freshwater pearl earrings from bebe&boo.   *Hint:  “moo moo” does not translate = moo moo, it actually means something…

Welcome to my life…please translate the following words in your comment (I’ll go easy on you, to start…because I’m nice like that…)

  1. Moo, moo = Cow (freebie)
  2. Pay noun = 
  3. Moe neen =
  4. Hail puh = 
  5. Honey =
  6. Jiss =
  7. Obble bus =
  8. Moody =
  9. Icky =
  10. Eeb rah =
  11. Hop hop =
  12. Eebitt =
  13. Nay nay =
  14. Cow =
  15. Boof =
  16. Me Oh Me =
  17. Yay dee =
  18. Deet =
  19. Oonie = 
  20. Beet boot =
  21. Boot =
  22. Sue =
  23. Rarrrr =
  24. Boat Ee Goo =
  25. Dough Ghee =
  26. Oat shyed =
  27. Bay oh =
  28. How whoooo =
  29. Bieber =
  30. Hoo hoo, ha ha =
  31. Pwffft =
  32. Maah tee =
  33. Booty =
  34. Poopie =
  35. Boobie =
  36. Dood doy =
  37. Mook =
  38. Dood nye moon =
  39. Num num =
  40. Cuckoo =
Have fun and have a fantastic weekend!

I’m busy having a lot of fun!

I started my own jewelry design business called bebe&boo last year. I am having so much fun doing it, not only creating things with my hands but meeting new people, too. Recently I was invited to join a group of talented wedding vendors in a photo shoot. All the jewelry you see in the video is by little old me! Here is a sneak video peak at how the day unfolded:

Style Me Pretty: Inspiration to Reality, Colorado from Rising Moon Video on Vimeo.

bebe&boo is featured on “Style Me Pretty”, aka “The Ultimate Wedding Blog” and one of the most inspiring wedding websites in the industry! Go check it out!

Making jewelry has always been a hobby, but diving into the custom design world for brides and their wedding parties is proving to be not only a lot of fun but a blessing to me as I meet these women…knowing I am helping to create beauty for one of their most memorable days.

I’ll post more about my pregnancy and my random thoughts on that later this week, but for now, I wanted to share with you just how much fun I am having being creative with my hands!

This is what I’ve been up to lately…

…making jewelry. I’ve made it since 7th grade as a hobby. I love making things with my hands and jewelry and sewing come easily to me. I don’t follow patterns, however. I’ve never been one to fit in a box. I make things up in my head or see something at a store and go home and try to recreate it. Well, as the economy has tanked and Jason and I are working to be good stewards, him wanting me to work from home so I can be available to Emily and active in her school, I’ve been searching the Internet and looking into at-home jobs. Finally, a dear friend called me on the rug and said, “Ade, why are you trying to re-create yourself?! God has given you many gifts! Why don’t you do what you already do, but stop giving it away?!”

And so, with others cheering me on as well, my mom and I recently launched “bebe&boo”, a design and jewelry outreach where a portion of our proceeds go toward sponsoring “The Well Radio Show” and Bevy, my non-profit organization that helps women and their families in need and other non-profits that help women in need. We’ve already made some great sales in less than a week in addition to some commissioned pieces…and, November 1st when a local salon and boutique, “Panache” opens their doors to the customers, “bebe&boo” will be featured there.

My mom is an amazing seamstress…she made my sister’s their prom dresses and has worked with interior designers making some really fabulous works. (I was always to ‘flow/fly by the seat of my pants’ to have my mom make me a dress in advance so I just had really ugly poofy 80’s dresses…). She also makes jewelry too, but together we’ll be turning out some fun pieces inspired by my Grandma’s closet and jewelry box, recycled pieces and nature, and eventually, the cute little European kids you see at big parks running around in outfits that don’t match at all, but somehow they look fantastic! We’re excited for what is in store!

Making things with my hands has always been therapeutic, but to make things since losing Noah brings me a lot of joy. I can’t even begin to explain how fun it is to sit and design things that women will enjoy wearing. As I sit there, creating pieces I think are beautiful to look at, I am reminded of all the beautiful women I have met or see out and about, their hearts designed by God, their smiles or frowns reflections of how beautiful or ugly they believe themselves to be. And so I pray as I make these pieces. I pray for whoever purchases them that they would know that true beauty is an internal display regardless of what society may tell us and it can only be measured by the heart.

So, then, why do I make jewelry if beauty is a reflection of the heart? Because jewelry is fun, it’s pretty, and I know where my beauty lies, so when we wear it ladies, it’s just icing on the cake!