Shabby Geek

We have lived in our house for 13 years.  We have never had bedroom curtains.  Until this last year, we didn’t even really have anything hanging on our bedroom walls.

Then, something epic happened.

My Mom gave me a comforter that she got from a friend and we went through totes in the garage for a garage sale.  In one of those totes, we found old Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back sheets that my Mom found at a thrift store.  The comforter matches the sheets perfectly!  

Here's the bedspread and the fitted sheet that I didn't use because it was really worn.  I'm thinking about using the edges, where it's in better shape, to make a dust ruffle.

Here’s the bedspread and the fitted sheet that I didn’t use because it was really worn. I’m thinking about using the edges, where it’s in better shape, to make a dust ruffle.

The result:


The middle portion is also part of a thrifted sheet.


I am so freakin’ proud of myself right now.

The sheets are really old and thin and even had holes in some places, but to me, that just makes them cooler.

I love to think that some little boy or little girl used these sheets and loved them so much that their Mom had to make up some story about why they suddenly had different sheets.

I also love that someone donated these, even with the holes.  One woman’s trash is another woman’s totally-freakin’-awesome-Star-Wars-curtains.

I cut the flat sheet into six sections, took out the top hem so I could hem all the sides, then hemmed all the tops and bottoms.  Had to do a little math to get them all the same length, since three of the panels already had a top and three already had a bottom.

The sides also seemed to have a selvage edge that made some of the hemming on the side wonky, but you can’t tell when they’re hanging.

I’ll take shabby geek over shabby chic any day!



I’m laundering, dusting, straightening, vacuuming, everything, the whole house today, when inspiration strikes. The majority of the knotted rag rug tutorials I’ve seen require some kind of grid to knot the scraps to.  I’ve seen the braided rag rugs that … Continue reading


I’m on the hoarder end of my fabric stash.  I save ALL my scraps…no matter how little.  Thread and fabric scraps alike.  I have a little basket where I put all my cloth and thread scraps for stuffing.  I have all my other scraps color coordinated in a divider I got from my hubby’s work when they were remodeling.  The smaller fabric scraps and ones that are not easier to fold are color coordinated in gallon ziploc bags.

Jars of buttons, ribbon scraps, clothing labels and other various lost things that I'll do something with, someday.  (Sorry hubby, probably not today)

Jars of buttons, ribbon scraps, clothing labels and other various lost things that I’ll do something with, someday. (Sorry hubby, probably not today)

Fabric scraps galore!

Fabric scraps galore!

Trying to be less like a hoarder (yeah right), I made a banner and hoop with scraps and buttons.  I should have mentioned that I also hoard buttons.  I have those color coordinated as well.  This project didn’t really make a dent, but it was fun and looks pretty in my bathroom.  I really like the green and blue next to all our dark wood.  Makes me happy.

I glued buttons to push pins to hang the banner.  The bottom buttons on the string of buttons on the banner are also push pins to keep the buttons showing.  I sewed on all the other buttons with green embroidery floss and reinforced my knots with hot glue.  The banner scraps are tied onto ties from an old heating pad.  If you can’t tell, I just double knotted the scraps to the hoop and the banner.

I’m glad I finally let go of some of my buttons for this project.  They are all just so pretty and unique that I always like to look through them, but can’t bring myself to use any of them.  What did I tell you?  Classic hoarder.  Now that I’ve used them, I get to look at them every day.  I now have plans to make a banner for my living room and kitchen.  Yay scraps!!!  

Banner hanging in my bathroom.

Banner hanging in my bathroom.

Another picture of my banner with the shelf it hangs over.

Another picture of my banner with the shelf it hangs over.

Hoop art with scraps and buttons.

Hoop art with scraps and buttons.

Grecian Goddess Dress


Greetings from Ancient Greece!  Well, not really.  More like Northern Colorado.  This is my sheet upcycle that was giving me such fits the other day.  This sheet came from Goodwill, probably for a buck.  I’ve also made two infinity scarves out of it for my Mom and my hubby’s Grandma.  I love the colors.  I looked at this tutorial, kind of.  The video is really long and my wifi was being persnickety, so I just used the measurements.  I probably needed lighter weight fabric to do this exact tutorial, which is why I was so frustrated.  I love upcycling because it’s quick and I get nearly instant gratification when something goes right.

For this upcycle, I didn’t like the baggy waistband and the way the top was laying.  Again, the fabric was so heavy that it just kind of hung straight down.  Even a belt didn’t support the middle enough to bring it up to my waist.  I cleaned my entire house, except my magnet keeper/kids art/all important papers holder, aka, my fridge.  I even did the ceiling fans.  I find that when my house is cluttered, so is my mind.  Every little thing I notice that needs to be done nags at me and takes my focus away from what I really want to be focusing on.

The answer ended up being an elastic band around the waist, gathers on the shoulder and then part of a green shirt for the belt and the strap gathers.  I love using little pieces of fabric to gather my straps over my breasts.  It pulls all the fullness together and give the girls extra breathing room.  I’m not sure where I’ll wear it, probably on a date night or just around the house because it is SO comfortable.

The extra happy moment came when I realized that the colors matched the pillowcase dresses I made for my girls.  SQUEEEE!!!  I told my hubby that our next family picture outfits were done as long as he and my son could find shirts to match us.  Although, he doesn’t get as into family pictures as I do, so I’ll probably be scouring Goodwill’s racks for them myself.


Geeky Upcycle

Our favorite comic shop, Gryphon Games & Comics in Fort Collins, held a garage sale last weekend.  I picked up two t-shirts for $3 a piece.  The first shirt I upcycled was a men’s Witchblade t-shirt.  I turned it into a … Continue reading

Shirt into Shrug

The other day I came up with a way to turn a shirt into a shrug on accident.  I was playing with a men’s shirt upcycle where I cut off the men’s shirt from the back yoke, around to the front and then straight across the front beneath the armpit.  I was going to add different fabrics to the bottom of the yoke and the front.  I may still do that.  Once I undid the buttons, I realized I had a T-shape.  I’ve looked at lots of shrug tutorials and several of them have you cutting your fabric into a T-shape.  I’ve never done it though.Image 

I finished off the raw edges and then played around with pinning the edges together.  You end up putting the shirt on upside down with the front of the shirt making the sides.  I’m also wearing the skirt I refashioned from a long jean jacket.  I added the rectangle of fabric squares on the side.  I don’t know if you can see it in the back, but there are a couple of the buttons left in the back that were for adjusting the coat that I left.  They are nice to have because they hold my belt in place along the back.


Please ignore the less than straight mess at the back of my head.  I’m practicing straightening my hair.  I haven’t done it in years.  The shoes I’m wearing, I’ve had forever.  They are A 2’s and super comfortable.  The shirt I thrifted last year, I believe from Goodwill.  It’s got a stain on the breast and I’ve contemplated dyeing it, but the stain bugs my hubby more than it bugs me.  The belt I got from my Father-in-law and Mother-in-law.  They got it from a yard sale along with some costume jewelry for my daughters.  I ended up keeping the belt and some other bracelets because the girls didn’t like them.  Thanks Gpa and Gma!

While I’m on the subject, I really do need to thank my Mom and my Father-in-Law and both Mothers-in-Law.  They are always encouraging and always finding me great deals.  My Mom lets me have all the fabric I want from her stash.  My Texas Mother-in-Law sent me her old Scrabble game to play with.  My Colorado Father-in-Law and Mother-in-Law always find me stuff at yard sales, including two big jars of buttons that an older lady had been collecting for years.

Pillowcase Dress Take Two

Here’s Katie’s pillowcase dress.  I did her dress the same way, except I didn’t cut as much off the top so it would be longer.  I used an old knit tank top to make the ties.  I had lace from an old nightgown (the rest of the nightgown into a skirt for Katie) that I used along the top to cover a hole in the pillowcase.  This is another steal from Goodwill.  I think I paid one dollar for it.  Katie requested only one pocket and I had just enough lace left to do the top of the pocket.



You can’t even see the hole!  I also put fray-check around the edges of the hole.



I just noticed that I almost matched up the pocket perfectly.  Go me!  I didn’t even think of doing that at the time.

Men’s Shirt Refashion

Today, I’m sharing dresses that I made for me and my girls out of men’s Hawaiian shirts and swim shorts.  They are really easy to make.  Mine and Katie’s (in the red) are made out of shirts and Emma’s is made out of swim shorts.  In the pictures we are using them as cover-ups, but we’ve worn them as sun dresses as well.  

The top band is made out of old stretchy knit tank tops of mine.  I just did what you would do for a yoga waistband without the fold-over part.  You could do it either way.  The top bands are all from Victoria’s Secret bra tops that I’ve cut up.  I’ve also salvaged tons of elastic out of my bra tops.  Bra tops and tig-ole-biddies do not go together well.  I always have to wear a bra anyway, so what’s the point?  The girls needed ties to hold up their tops.  

The shorts and the purple shirt I found at Goodwill on half off day for around $2.00.  The red shirt was also a Goodwill find for the same price.  My hubby wore this shirt last summer so it is on it’s third life as Katie’s dress.



My son is the camera man.  I made sure to tell him to please try to take good pictures, not just click without looking this time.  I failed to tell my daughters that we were smiling, not making silly faces.




Emma had to get it out of her system too.





The only nice picture we got came out blurry.  LOL.





Here’s our silly on purpose picture.

Pillowcase Dress

I just made this pillowcase dress for Emma.  She was not in a modeling mood, which is why Mr. Hanger and Ms. Fence had to help me out.  Even after reading several tutorials, I was still surprised at how easy this dress was to make.  I thought about doing a tutorial, which I’ve never done, but there are so many out there already.  So I’ll just brag on myself a little.



I got the pillowcase at Goodwill for a buck.  I hadn’t realized that the pillowcase had two different fabrics on each side until I started cutting.  I used the strip I cut off of the closed side to make the bow (  I used the half circle I cut out for the arm hole to make pockets.Image


I machine-stitched the bows on because my hand sewing blows and takes me forever.  I know this bow won’t come off.



I love how this dress came out.  Before I started, Katie didn’t want a pillowcase dress.  After I was finished, she changed her mind.  Yay!!!  I love that seeing how it came out made her want one.  Makes me hold my head up a little higher.