DIY Doily Shirts for Girls

You can probably, by now, sense a trend among the gifts I give to kids.  I have a deep fondness for fun, stylish clothes that are still inexpensive enough to run, jump, eat watermelon, and make mud pies in.  My dear friend Liza’s little girl, Holland, just turned five and had a very cool princess skating party.  I made her a couple of fun shirts, using the same process as the doily tote bags I gave as Christmas gifts.

The finished product, just before I wrapped them up this morning.

The finished product, right before I wrapped them up this morning!

The lace is sweet and girly, but the colors are fun and bright enough that I think Holland will still feel like a rock star/princess, or whatever it is kids want to be these days!  To make these sweet shirts, you’ll need: a plain shirt, acrylic paint in a coordinating color, spray adhesive, a doily, and textile medium.

Here’s the process:

Step One

  • First, pick out where you want the doily pattern to show up on the shirt.  I’m partial to bottom left corner and around the collar.  Using the spray adhesive, stick the doily to the shirt, making sure that no air pockets are left between the fabric and the paper.
  • Next, mix the acrylic paint and textile medium according to the instructions on the textile medium package.  Mine required two parts medium to one part paint.

  • Using the doily like a stencil, paint over all the spaces where the shirt is showing through.  Be careful not to go outside the doily, and not to apply too much paint (so that it doesn’t bleed). If you’re using a color you’re afraid won’t show up, you can let it dry and apply another coat rather than slathering a ton of paint on all at once.

  • Once you’ve given them ample time to dry (a few Weeds episodes did the trick for me!), peel the doily off and wash, dry, and iron the shirts before giving them away.

Related Posts:

Simple Sewing Machine Cover

We live in a very, very old apartment, and at times I feel like it’s crumbling down around us.  That’s really the only logical explanation for the copious amounts of dust we sweep up on a daily basis.  Well, that and our cats.  Cats (with all their shedding and the litter they track everywhere, no matter how often you sweep) create a lot of uncontrollable dust. Dust is really, really bad for sewing machines! Mine sits in a pretty out-of-the-way cubby hole next to my desk and under my printer, but cats love those kinds of places. As an extra step toward combating the buildup of dust on my sewing machine, I made this very simple cover that slides over the top.  Pick attractive fabric and it’ll be easy to hide your sewing machine in plain sight!

Chowdy Boy is sleeping under scrap fabric in the background.

To make one of these, all you have to do is take some simple measurements and sew some squares together.  Take the measurements for the height, width, and length across the top of your sewing machine.  Add 1″ to each measurement, and cut out five rectangles: one for the top, and four for each side.  Sew all the side pieces (the yellow and blue boxes) together to form a tube, then turn that tube inside out and sew the top on, matching the short and long sides up.  Turn the raw bottom edges under 1/2″ and press, then hem.

I've summed the process up in this great diagram: sew the yellow parts together, and hem the blue parts.

Related Posts:

Handmade Valentines

I love botanical drawings, and I’ve been hoarding these beautiful calendar pages for almost three years.  I decided to finally do something with them and, using some cardboard and scrapbook paper, I made a few valentines to send to a few friends.  I put these sweet babies in the mail today, so hopefully they’ll make it to my friends by Valentine’s day!

Handmade valentines from recycled cardboard and calendar pages.

Related Posts:

A Tried and True Homemade Deodorant Recipe

Tonight was supposed to be dedicated to toothpaste-making, but I still need spearmint and peppermint essential oils.  I have plenty of lavender and dried mint on hand, though, so I decided to make a little deodorant since I used my next-to-last crumbs up this morning anyway.  Most people who know that I make my deodorant exclaim one of two things: a mildly disgusted, “Why?” or “Cool! Can you make me some?”  This whole thing started my sophomore year when Lush abruptly stopped making their Aromacreme,which I’d been using and loving for a year or two.  I was devastated, and tried several all-natural brands that left me spelling a lot like a Frito Chili Pie.  Needless to say I was tired of stinking. I was also tired of paying up to $15 on products that likely wouldn’t work for me, so I decided to google something like “homemade deodorant recipes,” and the following concoction is the first one I stumbled upon. I’ve continued to make it because it’s worked so well for me, and although I recently heard that Lush’s Aromacreme is back in production,there’s no way I’m going back to paying for that stuff when I can make this myself for a lot cheaper.

As for the recipe itself, here’s how it goes: I smashed up a little dried mint, lavender essential oil, and baking soda in the mortar and pestle and then mixed it all with cornstarch, baking soda, and coconut oil.  Any essential oil can be used, and the mint seems to be more for appearance than anything—I’ve been trying to perfect this combination for some time now, but half the time I can’t even smell the mint part.  Expect further experimentation on this combination in the future.

Easy Homemade Deodorant

1/2 C cornstarch
1/2 C baking soda (I used some of this portion to smash up the mint with)
1-3 T. coconut oil
A few drops of the essential oil of your choice

Combine and store in an airtight container. I find a clean pimento jar works nicely, and this amount lasts me a month or two.

Related Posts: