+ - - - - - - DIY Peter pan collar top with optional zipper or button back

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Okay, I will admit I may have started this top a good 3 years ago, and just finished it a few days ago after finding it shoved into a paper bag in the back of my sewing closet. I was planning on originally putting buttons down the back, but opted for a simple coral zipper instead. Even though I’m still wishing I had the original coral zippers I had purchased for them years ago. I know that peter pan collars are all over the place, and have been for some time,  and I thought It would be perfect to share my little tutorial before this cute little fad fades away. While I was finishing this top up, I wished so desperately I had made it in a white, cream or black solid for pairing with sweaters and dresses. If you check out my pin board I recently pinned my ideas there. The one with the high waisted pink shorts is adorable.

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Supplies:
2 yards of medium weight fabric
another boxy top to mimic
thread
scissors
sewing machine

Instructions:
1. Trace the boxy top onto your fabric and cut out a front piece
2. Cut out two back pieces that will have an extra inch added to the center. This will be for the buttons or zippers or just a plain yet cute seam in the back. Fold and iron down the one inch in from the middle edges of the back 2 pieces. This should now be the same width as your front piece when both back pieces (both folded on edge) are put together, folds touching.
3. Sew the sides and the shoulder seams together, right sides together (outside fabric touching)
**optional Here is where you can install a zipper, buttons or just sew up the middle seam. If you want to add a zipper, follow this tutorial or this tutorial, If you want to sew buttons, use this one or this one.
4. Cut out a peter pan collar by first using a piece of paper or your fabric and tracing the neckline edge out (make sure that your neckline is where you want it). Then trace a peter pan collar or make your own, and cut out 4 from the main fabric (2 one way and 2 the other way). You may want to test it out first, bigger is better because you can always make the collar smaller.
5. Sew 2 of the collar pieces together (as well as the other side) right sides together leaving the neckline side open.
6. Make a neckline facing from this tutorial.
7. Pin the collar (pretty side facing out) and the neckline facing (the wrong side is facing out) to the outside of the shirt’s neckline. Sew the top edge all the way around. concealing the raw edge of the peterpan collar in the facing once flipped inside.
8. flip the inside of the facing inside and top stitch the edge of the neckline to the facing, while your collar is flipped up. Flip down the collar and iron down.
9.+10. Cut out the sleeves by tracing out one of your sleeves (I usually take apart an old shirt or use just the sleeve part to a pattern. But you can make it a little longer and gather it at the top to make it a little poofy at the top. Fold in half right sides together, sew into tube and hem.
11. Slide sleeve RST into sleeve opening while shirt is inside out. So the right side of the sleeve and shirt are touching. Sew along the edge of both. Repeat with the other side. Hem the bottom.
12. Iron and Done!
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+ - - - - - - My favorite time of year.

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Every single year my little family vacations for the Fourth in a little place called Gualala California. My favorite little retreat in the world. And the best part….you are disconnected from the world. well, mostly. I choose to be disconnected. And I love it. Its a break from stress, a break from social media, a break from my mind. Also, its a plus that I get to be surrounded by my huge 40+ member family. Which is a party all the time. Every day is full of adventures, naps, swimming, ranger rides, sand castle building, eating and more eating, boating, fishing, hiking, scavenger hunting, card gaming, chit chatting, smore making, etc. My kids get to play with their cousins all day. non-stop. I seriously look forward to every single visit to this secluded place and crave it after I leave.
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We hike and ride through the super pretty redwood forest the borders the pond, and you would not believe how pretty it is. It really was that green.
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easily tuckered out from non-top play. Quite the perk.
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Singing+campfire+smores+scary storytelling = best night ever
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Caught his first fish with his little batman fishing pole – don’t worry – we let the little guy go.
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Squeezing in a trip to the nearby beach – a must in California right?
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Fourth of july decorations and eating, I have the sweetest nieces and nephews and the more I get to know them the more I love them. Yes, and that is Oli stuffing his face successfully with a Uncle Sam cupcake. And yes, I’m one of those mothers that find my child adorable even with frosting dangling off his face.

+ - - - - - - DIY flounce sleeve crop top

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I’ve always been a sucker for flounce sleeves, it was about time I made another. The last few I made were 3 or so years ago at this post and this post. Next time I will wear it with a tight pencil skirt to really show off how cute it is.

top: self-made     bottom: h&m     shoes: nine west

+ - - - - - - 4 step DIY maxi skirt with optional slits

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shoes: Sam edelman  sunglasses: h&m

Nothing makes me feel more feminine than a maxi skirt, especially a maxi skirt that shows a little leg. The slits not only adds a little vavavoom, but adds a pretty flow as you walk and move in it. I was shocked at how dang easy this was to make. Even though working with 3 yards of fabric can be a pain in the but, everything else was smooth sailing. I’m in love with this skirt! I just have to make it in a pretty floral to match this upcoming summer.

+ - - - - - - How to easily remove scuffs from shoes

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Shoe scuffing has been one of the most annoying things to deal with when it comes to shoes. Especially when I tend to play around with my boys and they scrap into things. So, I heard my sister-in-law say her mom used nail polish remover to quickly get rid of these scuffs before running to church. So I had to give it a try and I was shocked! It worked! It wasn’t the best solution in the world, but I was very please at it removing 95% or dirt and scuffs. The rest were easily covered up and filled in with shoe polish (tutorial here). I wonder though if I had caught  a lot of these scuffs around the day it happened if it would more easily get out? Some of these scuffs are a year old. Now every time I pull out some shoes with scuffs, I’m going to quickly rub some nail polish remover over them and run out the door. Yay! I love finding solutions to things.

Supplies:
scuffed shoes
nail polish remover
q-tips
soap + water
optional-shoe polish(tutorial here)

Instructions:
1. Dab the q-tip in nail polish remover, then wipe/rub over the scuffs. I had to do this quite a bit.
2. Wash off with soap and water
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Optional: If some spots were too stubborn or there are tears and whatnot, then rub in some shoe polish. Follow this tutorial to do so. I had a few spots where this happened and the shoe polish rubbed in beautifully.
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+ - - - - - - DIY perpendicular striped pencil skirt

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I have spotted a few people with this skirt and I just love it! I love how unique a simple striped skirt can be come by just flipping a few of the striped the other direction.

You make this quick pencil skirt using this tutorial. But a few changes:

Cut out a strip of fabric in the other direction, make sure it is 2 or 3 stripes at least wide with 1/2 inch seam allowance. Then take your front piece you have for you skirt, cut out the width of the strip (the width of just the 3 stripes-not including the seam allowance) from the front of the skirt. Make sure to leave a little extra for the seam allowance. Then sew the strip into the front of the skirt making sure to sew on the line so just the edge of one of the stripes on the thin strip lines up. Then sew the front piece and the back piece together. Make sure to also follow the perpendicular strip to make sure it is lined up perfectly. Then add elastic to the top and hem the bottom.

To add elastic to the top…pin the elastic to the top edge outside (RST) of the skirt and sew a zigzag stitch making sure it sews over the edge. flip inside and sew a topstitch while you stretch it. done!