Category Archives: Creative Crafts Thursday

How to alter an old blouse into a sundress top

This is one of the many tops that I haven’t used for a very long time. I actually got bored of it but, at the same time, I dreaded the thought of getting rid of it either. So, I thought, why not alter it into something wearable inside the house?

Since my sewing skills don’t lie (yes, I don’t have any formal training!), I don’t want to do a horrible thing and toss it out of the window. However, I took comfort in the fact that the blouse has a dark, printed material so I wouldn’t worry about my newbie-not-so-straight-stitchings! Lol.

So okay, here’s the blouse I was talking about, a short-sleeved version of the Indian tunic (kurta), except that I already cut the sleeves off before I took this photo:

short sleeved indian tunic

From this…

end result

… to this! It’s perfect for the hot weather here 🙂

I may sound like an apologist for saying this over and over but — really, I’m just a trying hard DIYer so please excuse if the end result doesn’t look that much 🙂 I actually based this on Heather Ross’s sundress pattern. But instead of a dress, mine ended up as a top because of the  original length of the tunic and I just left the slits on the sides as they are. With the current hot weather here, it is just perfect!

I’m not so much of a tutorial maker myself but, if you are interested, I created a slide show  below documenting the steps on how I altered the blouse.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

And so, this is my first attempt at altering my clothes. I had fun, really, especially with the shirring part. It’s actually my favourite part.

Sewing demands a great deal of skill, expertise, and patience. I have a completely renewed respect for the dressmakers and admiration for people who choose to remake their own, after doing this myself.

I also want to thank the countless talented dressmakers and crafters out there who selflessly shared their tutorial videos online for free. Keep them coming. They’re very, very useful for people like me.

And this is my entry for the following weekly parties:

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How to make your own monogram rubber stamp

Last year I started venturing into the art of stamping and I was delighted about it. I started practicing with rubber erasers nicked from my husband’s school supplies and I got really hooked. My kind-hearted friends, seeing how hard I tried my hand at carving, sent me rubber stamps. I think it’s their way of saying my carving skills suck, lol. But anyway, I love the rubber stamps that I made myself, regardless of how rough,  unpolished, or amateurish they may be.

stamping for fun

No fuss. Very simple monogram rubber stamp. The banners are also made and hand-stamped by me.

I take really great pride in what I have made. So, here is one of my finished rubber stamp, a very simple monogram. I wanted to make something that I can use in making personalised cards and tags for family and friends.

While some people might be turned off at how “crude” and unrefined this looks I do not give a hoot at all because I think it adds more to the charm of a hand-stamped monogram, hehehe. Besides I’m only a beginner. Not bad, eh?

Materials and tools used: ordinary rubber erasers, a cutter, a heavy-lead pencil (for tracing), and a stamp pad.

How to do it? Here’s a very simple tutorial:

First things first. I created my monogram, letter “Z” using a pencil. You can either do it free-hand (like I did) or on your computer (and then print it out).

For some reason I shaded the hand-drawn monogram before tracing it face down on the eraser block. In this way, the “shade” is transferred on to the eraser block, see pic below.

transfer monogram to eraser

Next, with a cutter, I cut out the outer pencil lines to form the shape of the monogram and sliced the unnecessary parts. Since I do not have the right carving tools, I made do with the cutter. It was not easy but very doable. After a few minutes of slicing and cutting — voila!

cutting the outer lines of the monogram

Now, to see if the finished monogram is alright, I pressed my monogram stamp on on the stamp pad and … voila! My monogram rubber stamp is good to go 😀

stamping for fun

This is actually my second attempt in making my monogram rubber stamp. It looks neater and cleaner, actually. Practice does make it perfect.

Here are some of the rubber stamps I made out of ordinary erasers:

carving rubber erasers for fun

Practicing my carving skills on rubber erasers was fun! You can make anything if you let your imagination work.

Maybe you are wondering why I’m using ordinary erasers instead of rubber stamp blocks. Well, my friends, they are not available here in Phnom Penh. Besides, purchasing them online is also very costly.

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Creative Craft Thursday

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Creative Crafts Thursday: Hand-stamped Christmas card

Wow, time flies really fast! It’s been a month since I last posted here and right now we are right smack in the middle of January. Unbelievable.

I have a lot of catching up to do so here’s my entry to the Creative Crafts Thursday meme.

Here’s another card I made. The first batch I did were crocheted but due to eye and back problems I managed to make only a few. So I made some more but preferred the easy to make ones using rubber stamps I bought at Etsy. I was relieved that the parcel arrived earlier than anticipated so I was able to use the stamps for this card and have them sent in the nick of time.

Using only a yellow card stock, animals and seal rubber stamps, this is what I came up with:

homemade christmas card

My hand-stamped Christmas card (foreground), Christmas 2012. Behind’s the birthday card my in-laws mailed for my husband.

I used the seal stamps as the centre of the card with the hand-stamped animals around it. I coloured bits of the animals and added broken lines on the border to give it the illusion of a hand-sewn card.  Then I wrote the texts using a metallic gold pen to complete the card.

It’s just a simple card but while making this, a childhood memory suddenly came rushing to my mind, of me and my younger siblings sitting in our dining table busy making our own Christmas cards. I remember the chatter, the mess everywhere, the paste all over the table (even our hands and arms were not spared) and my mother telling us all to be careful with the scissors. I also remember how fun it was despite the chaos. How about you? Are there any  memories that remind you of when crafting?

Do you have some exciting crafts to share? Come join us at Creative Crafts Thursday by clicking the badge. See you next time.

Creative Craft Thursday

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