No Sew T Shirt to Dress – again!

We did it again!  Because there are just far too many adorable little sisters rooting for their big brothers –  

Angelstshirtdress    Angelsshirtdress2

This little cutie has a brother playing for the As – so I scrounged up some t shirts in the right color, pulled up a comfy chair at baseball practice and starting snipping…shout out to my baseball moms for your input!

So, here’s how you get there – 

Choose your shirts – the bodice shirt should be a good imagefit or close to – it’s ok if it’s a little baggy – but if it’s too big, you’ll need to go a different route with this – which could also be done without sewing – comment if you do, and I’ll help you get there 🙂 – but let’s stay focused…

The how to is a bit wordy – it’s really easy and quick, though, promise 😉

Take your t-shirt that you will use for the skirt part of the dress and chop it off – just below the armpit.  Don’t worry about the length for now.

Cut a long strip off the top about 1-2 inches wide – what you will do here is start, circle around once (only cutting through one layer at a time) – don’t meet your starting cut with your finishing cut – you are going to taper down a little and go around the shirt again so that your ‘ribbon’ is three to four times the circumference of the shirt – you need a long enough strand to wrap around the waist of the child and tie bow, one strand to go around the imageneckline and tie a bow, and two strands long enough to go around the arm holes and bows on the shoulder.  If anyone needs help with that, I will gladly do that again and get a better visual of that for you.  I’m sure that I can find a reason to do this again :)…

You can cut a little length off the top of your skirt, or save that until the end and cut length off the bottom.  Raw edges are good…

Cut the neck-band and sleeves off of your bimageodice  shirt. You can also cut the hem off  so that you will have a raw edge.  If your shirt is bigger, cut the shirt to length you want it…

Cut horizontal slits in at the bottom of your bodice, and coordinating slits at the top of your skirt.  It’s probably ok if they are vertical slits, but less chance of ripping with horizontal.  Your slits should be just wide enough to slip the ‘ribbon’ through, and mine were about 2-3 inches apart from each other.

Turn your ‘skirt’ inside out, tuck it inside the bodice, so the top raw edge of the skirt meets the bottom raw edge of the bodice.  It’s wrong in the first picture – that’s how I started (right side to wrong side), but changed my mind.  So, you can see what not to do :).  For yours, wrong sides should be together. The wrong sides (like the second picture) together creates a cute little trim/gather when you are finished…

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Start in one of your front center slits (I had them slightly off-center, so the bow will fall in the center.  Thread your ribbon in first so there is a strand hanging out the front. Thread alternating in and out until you meet back up in the front to tie a bow – if you end up a slit short – just snip another one :).  Gather a bit, and tie your bow.  You can adjust the gather once you put it on your ‘lil sis.

Moving on to the bodice –  This part is completely optional – you can leave them raw with imageno embellishment – but adding the ‘ribbon’ adds a little more character and allows for a
better and more customized fit –

For the neck – cut slits around the neckline (parallel to the edge – I’d say horizontal, but it curves…so ya know – go along the edge about an inch or so in from the edge.  I put my bow in the back (ADORABLE) because my shirt was so busy in the front.

For the arm holes – cut slits around the open arm holes, again parallel to the edge.  I put my bows a the top of the shoulder.

If you run out of ‘ribbon’, just cut another strip from the skirt.

My dress was made for a little one that wears a size 18 m, so I didn’t even try to make it a full length dress – because, well…that doesn’t work so great with all the climbing around at the ball park.  If you do care to sew, you can even use your discarded sleeves to make some shorts or bloomers.  I didn’t do that this time around.

I gave sweet little A’s Mama the left over  scraps from the shirts, and she tied them up into a perfectly awesome southern bow.  And I knew she would – cause she’s one of my go to gals for bows.  Didn’t she do a great job? And doesn’t she make beautiful babies?

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No Sew T Shirt to Dress

It took me longer to write this tutorial than to make the dress – no joke.

Give it a shot!

First, grab your supplies –  I started with a youth size medium sleeveless racerback T shirt – this will work with any sleeveless shirt with a binding.  We’ll try it with a regular t shirt next time…

You will also need –

  • IMG_1753Scissors or a seam ripper
  • About 3 – 3.5 yards of ribbon (1/8″ is easy to pull through – you could go up to 1/2″)
  • A Bodkin (this is a sewing tool used for threading elastic and turning things – mine is ball point) or a safety pin small enough to fit into the binding.  Make sure it’s nice and sturdy.

Grab  your scissors and start snipping:

No Sew Shirt to dress

Now grab your ribbon and bodkin or safety pin:

No Sew T shirt dress ribbon threading

A few close ups of the Ribbon Threading to help you along:

And there you go! Pull your ribbons through and tie off as desired, trim to the length you like.  I found it best to make sure the shirt is gathered in the front and not in the back – it will lay better that way.

Embellish your dress, and make it awesome! Here is ours finished (though as of yet unadorned) – best pictures I could get with my ‘I’m not so much in the mood for this right now’ model –

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Hope you enjoy – Happy NO SEWING!!!!!

Baseball Pants. White ones.

It is that time of year at our house…baseball season. My husband and youngest son become different beings. Happy, busy, always outside, sweaty, dirty, grass stained beings. And I love it.

I love the way their whole being changes when they step on the field. I love to watch them leave Dad and Son in the car and become coach and player. It fascinates me that they can make that switch. I love watching coach hold back a little on his fist pump and hide his grin under a tipped hat when player nails a play or makes a great hit. And yet still still finds a way to catch son’s eye and make sure he knows that Dad saw him. And I don’t take for granted for one second what a precious gift they have. I am just glad I get to tag along.

If you are a baseball mom, I mean really a baseball mom…you know what I mean. They would breathe that dirt if we let them.

And yet we are not here to talk about that…

Last season, had the pleasure of having an entire baseball team over at once so I could pin their pants for hemming. Their brand new pants...fresh out of the box in my driveway…that managed to get grass and mud stains before I could pin them. My heart sighed for their mothers.

Because….well…I just know.

And then it happens to me.  Had an extra player in the house and a fresh box of pants for our team so I had our son and the extra player try some on to see if we got the sizing right…that’s a whole ‘nother baseball on post, y’all. Don’t even get me started.

And, yep. Somehow in that 7 minutes of tryining on pants, chocolate appeared.

Here’s a little photo shoot of before, during and after a game…

See below for the how-to…

davydmatthew matthewslide

IMG_1040[1]IMG_1039[1]IMG_1046[1]         IMG_1045[1]

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So, here is your Baseball Mom tip of the day…you have grains stains. And mud stains. And not regular mud…that is not even remotely intimidating…we laugh at mud…we are talking pure D, bonified, red-clay-like baseball dirt. These are my go to get it out methods:

1.  Go to the car wash. Yep. Do not pass go…just go.  Hang up on the mat clips if you’re lucky enough, if not take a pants hanger and find a spot – spray em.  High pressure rinse.  You have to a little close – and spray. That’s it. Just spray.  It got the grass stains off of his butt, y’all.

Disclaimer – you do risk fraying the fabric doing this – just decide if it’s worth it. We’ll get holes anyway – so it is. Just find your balance between close enough and not too close. 

2.  If that doesn’t work entirely, or simply makes you gasp in horror –  Go to the market and get yourself some Fels-Naptha soap. Best stuff. Run a little cold water over your stain and your soap, give the stain a few second scrub (I usually rub the fabric together against itself to get a little friction) and poof…no more grass stain. Still there? Try again. still there? Give a little more soap and throw it in the wash. Just make sure it’s out before you put them in the dryer.  Mid season, it’s ok – just be done with it ;).

3. My other favorite, there are lots of blogs touting for a magic mixture of 2 parts peroxide and 1 part dawn dish soap. They speak truth. This is amazing stuff. We use this stuff everywhere – carpets, upholstery, clothes, etc… Mix it up, spray it on your stain, and rub it in. as I mentioned above,  or, if it’s not that bad of a stain, just spray the stain and throw it in the wash.

Disclaimer: I have had ZERO issues with bleaching, discoloration, etc.  But, please do test it out on an unseen spot just in case.

4. And the final method…from the goddess of laundry herself, my mother in law. I kid you not, people. If you really need it clean, you hand it to Granny. It will look better-than-fresh-from-the-store new. White baseball pants, we know, are the spawn of the devil until you get this right…then you beg for them…because there is this little trick called BLEACH. It works… Ok… Pretreat and soak if necessary…you can pretreat with #1 or #2 or with what’re your favorite is.  The bleach method only works, of course, with solid white pants.  For the pants I have shared in this post, I use color safe bleach.  Does the trick, too.

Most important..soak and rinse with COLD WATER. Hot water at this point will set in the stain. I always give a little scrub and try to get some/all/ most of the stain out here. You can or not. Now, go to your washer. Put in your load of bleachable whites…which should of course include your baseball pants…Find the white setting. Whatever that is for you…white, sanitary. Whatever. Too many different washers to even give you a generic setting.  Now you can have hot water if that is what is recommended for your fabric. Wash in hot water if ok for your pants, rinse in cold, warm, whatever.  Fill to max with detergent…find your bleach dispenser. Now fill it up. All the way. No, not half way..all the way. Not almost…fill it. And she told me to go a little OVER that. I don’t officially recommend that as you don’t want to risk damage to your clothes or machine. Now… Look at your wash cycle again…you should have a prewash and extra rinse. Turn those on. Sit back, have some bonbons, play some candy crush, and watch the magic. I’ve never had this problem, but if your load smells a little too bleachy for you when it’s done, just run an extra rinse and spin cycle.  That should take care of it.

This method, of course, is ONLY suggested for solid white pants.

Don’t have pre wash and extra rinse? No problem – just let the clothes soak a bit before letting the cycle start…And at the end of the wash, run a rinse and spin or speed wash. Your goal here is to make sure all the bleach is out.

That is taken care of. Now, go watch your baby play some ball in those bright pants and watch all the other mama’s envy you.

And before he even gets up to bat…yep. Dirty pants. Sigh.

Repeat for about half the season…and after that, just throw them in with whatever you happen to be washing…because, really, we’re all over it by now…

GO TEAM!

Have fun – watch some baseball – don’t stress about the pants – kids grow, and dirt happens. A LOT.


 Special thank you to Granny, Mrs. Stacie, #99’s Dad, and Nina’s Grandma for your help and laundry tips!

Psalm 96-22


 Shameless Plug- If you need some spirit wear for yourself or someone in your family, I can take care of that for you – jump on over to my Facebook page for a few samples – let me know what you have in mind. I love team spirit, and watching my favorite player.
 And, just for clarification, I did not receive any advertising dollars, perks, or other compensation for this post. These are products I use in my home and recommend to my friends, family, and team…

 

 

So you’re the team mom? Alright – let’s do this…

So they snagged ya, huh?  Congrats to them, and to you!  Team mom is an awesome job – it’s also alot of work!  I’m heading into my fourth year – and still I’m no expert, but maybe I can save you some work… So, let’s just cut down to it – cause you don’t have time to read the whole story…image

We’ll start with the basics – and assume you are team mom to a local baseball team –

find out what the league expects of you

Each organization will be different – this can range from collecting forms and money to planning team events and choosing end of season trophies.

If it’s more than you can handle on your own, make sure to ask for help – it is not uncommon to have co-team parents and share duties.  It helps, though, to have one main person for the team to communicate with – otherwise, things get confusing – people are busy, and no matter how many times you tell them who to go to for what, they won’t remember – because they are busy with jobs, kids, and various other responsibilities – there’s a reason they didn’t volunteer for your roll.  They are relying on you to keep them informed.

find out what the coach needs from you

This is pretty simple if the coach is your spouse.  If not, talk with them for a few minutes and find out what they want you to do and what they would prefer to handle on their own. Some will want help with scheduling and reminders, some will  need some back up support to handle paperwork, fundraising, & organizational type duties. while they spend their time with the team.  The main goal of even having a team parent is to free up the coach to COACH. And there is so much more that goes into that than what you see on the field.  Again, be open with your coach about what you can and cannot handle.

establish a line of communication

You might use text messages and/or email – text messages are great for quick reminders – save the lengthy stuff for emails – sometimes I have had to send out a text message so that people will check their email (true story).  Just know that text messages can be disruptive to the work day and try to limit those to brief practice/game reminders.   The replies can also be very disruptive to your day.  Give yourself permission to not reply immediately. It’s ok!

The coach should communicate with the team when to expect what information (rain outs, reschedule events, etc.) so that you and he/she are not bombarded with constant questions about that – and the faster you get that information out once you have it, the fewer disruptions you will have to your day.  Once you establish (by example) that you will get the information out in a timely manner, they will simply wait for you!   If I ‘should’ have some information, but there has been a delay, I’ll sometimes send out a quick email or add a note to our schedule so they know I don’t have it yet and the reason for the delay if I am aware of it.

Let your team know if there may delay to your replying to their messages due to your work schedule, etc.  and who to contact if they need an immediate answer.

consider team web pages

These can be VERY helpful and make communication easier.  You just have to decide how much you want to invest upfront to save time and energy later – and that will depend on you, your coach, and your team.

The simplest that I have seen is GameChanger – you can input your schedule and players, family, and fans. You can also set your roster for game day to share with the other team and keep score! No more pencil pouches! WOOT! Quick email updates can be sent out to the team from there as well.

If your in it for the long haul or are an over organizer like me, You’ll love TeamSnap – pretty much everything is there – the site will allow you to send text messages, emails, and even has a message board.  All of your team’s information is there, as is your schedule and it even tracks payments so that you know at a glance who still owes money for what. You can even share pictures – so if you’re trying to choose a trophy, pop up a few pictures to get some feedback. The paid version is awesome – but the free version is sufficient for a regular season. The only thing it can’t do is what GameChanger does – and that is keep score….so yea.  I use both.   Yes, I hate myself.

A private facebook group is also loads of fun for family and fans – this is a great place to share pictures, events, and just general team banter – make sure to make it a private or closed group to protect the group from spammers and to protect the privacy of the children on your team.

On any of these sites – make sure that the parents are aware of what you are using and give them the option of opting out or choosing to not have their child’s photo or information shared or stored. 

So, what responsibilities can you expect?  It’s a long list – and certainly not exhaustive – some will apply to you, some will not – so please don’t run screaming!

  • general team communication
  • money and information (insurance waivers, etc) collection
  • team trophies
  • snack schedules
  • fan shirts
  • fundraising coordination (collection, pick up, sorting, delivering)
  • acquiring team sponsorships
  • uniform distribution
  • score keeping and scoreboard assignments
  • first aid/player medical information
  • dug out help
  • team pictures
  • sponsor gifts
  • coaches gifts

scared yet?

Don’t be – it’s not all that bad – it’s actually loads of fun! And most leagues and coaches are pretty good about keeping you informed – they know how valuable you are!

Take things one task at a time and prioritize!

short list of to-do’s

  • Keep a binder or folder with all your information in one place.
  • Make a dedicated backpack for practice and game days and keep everything there.
  • Store each player’s contact information in your phone immediately!  This will help you to know who’s calling you and especially if someone is running late – you won’t have to dig that information out of your phone or out of a stack of papers.

most importantly

Do not take anything personally!  People are passionate about their children, and about their team…we all have opinioins…different things matter to different people.  You will hear things, be exposed to things, be told things, have things happen to you never thought possible…remember at the end of the day, it’s about those kids on the field!

 Ignore negativity when you can, deal with it as maturely as possible when you must.  If you have an issue with someone, go to that person and talk with them…often, it is a misunderstanding and you may find out a little more about that person and they you so that you can be more supportive of one another.  If you can’t solve the problem, then it’s time to speak with the coach and/or a league representative.

next time, we’ll look at game day prep 

This will help any baseball mom, but especially the team mom, be ready for game day without a last minute frazzle to make sure you have everything…good luck…four years in, I still forget something…