Sewing Swimwear Part 2: Bikini Top

For Part 1: Sewing Swimwear and the bikini bottom tutorial head there first. That post covers fabric, machine set up, tips, drafting a pattern, cutting, and all the details you need to know for Sewing Swimwear.  For this post we are going over sewing the bikini top using COATS Eloflex Thread that is designed to stretch with the fabric. It's a great thread to use for swimwear, fitness wear, and knits ensuring the seams and hems can expand without breaking the thread. I wanted a basic halter style suit because  I'm a mom of 3 insanely active boys. I'm usually running around the beach or splashing in the pool rather than lounging if you know what I mean. I need a swim top that has support, comfort, and coverage. So I made my own and tested it out during our weekend beach trip and I couldn't of been happier. 

Get the details below on how to make your own swimwear.



How To: Machine Embroidery on Hats

May is finally here and we have a lot to look forward to these coming months. From Mother's Day to graduation and several weddings! There is a lot of fun to be done. It also means the season of giving... For me I enjoy making handmade gifts, it's one of the pleasures of being a maker. Because I have a lot of sewing to do, I like to design projects that are simple enough but also one-of-a kind. That's why I love machine embroidery. It makes customizing easy and this Floral Monogram collection from Embroidery Online is perfect for embroidered gifts.

  For this post I wanted to share tutorials on how to Monogram hats with machine embroidery using this Floral Monogram Collection. The designs feature each letter framed in a circular pattern with over 2 dozen colorful flowers. Add these to hats, towels, totes, robes, and more. What I like about these embroidered hats is they can be made for several occasions: bridal parties, teachers gifts, birthdays, and everything in between. Add them into a themed basket and you have the perfect gift for just about anyone. 

Get the full tutorial below on how to machine embroider a baseball cap and a wicker sun hat: 



DIY Wicker Roundie Bag from Placemats

Maybe this is just how my thrifty mind works but everytime I see those round wicker bags I think placemats! So I decided to go ahead and make my own trendy roundie using a set of placemats I got for a dollar each! I also wanted something with color instead of the typical natural to stand out a bit. To tie the overall finish together I needed to add some Dritz hardware. They really have everything you can think of when it come to making bags from fasteners to accents. For this bag I used the Small Swivel Hook & D-Ring set along with the Tassel Cap to add some more FUN (who doesn't love tassels?). These hardware details made all the difference in turning these placemats into a wicker worthy bag. 

Get the details below on how to make your own:



Eco Brands We Love: Jelt Belt

As a mother of 3 active boys you can imagine the energy that goes on at PifeLife. As a runner, I joke that I run more miles chasing after my boys than during my actual training runs. Keeping up with them requires endurance. The last thing I want to be dealing with is what I'm wearing. You know how it goes, you're running back and forth picking them up and down. There is never a free hand and the pants are about to fall off. It's actually why I began sewing in the first place. I initially learned to sew in middle school to alter garments to fit my slender, athletic build. I finally don't have to add darts and take in seams of all my pants thanks to Jelt Belt. Not only are they effective at keeping the pants up (even while carrying a toddler), they're eco friendly. Jelt Belts are made from 100% recycled water bottles. They just got their B-Corp Certification! I also love that the belt buckle is flat so you don't have the unsightly "buckle bulge." They can be worn with or without loops due to the grippy inner gel. It's really the perfect belt and gift for me (p.s. Mother's Day and Father's Day is coming up).

Even better they have now make them for kids, Jelt Junior. If you have little ones you know the struggle is real to find a belt that is comfortable and effective but also easy for them to adjust. My son for the first time in his 9 year old life said he finally "knows how to take a belt on and off!!" He only wore basketball shorts because he couldn't figure out standard belt buckles. 

Outfit details: I'm wearing the Jelt Bronze, the boys are wearing the Jelt Junior in Black and Cool Blue

Visit Jelt Belt for more.


Mother's Day DIY: Embroidered Sleep Masks

Mother's Day is just around the corner and what better gift for Mom than the gift of relaxation!  I love these Stitch 'N' Turn Sleep Masks from Embroidery Online. They come with 3 cute designs and a blank one to customize. Add these Sleep Masks to a Spa Gift Basket and it's my go-to for handmade gifts. Not just for Mother's Day, these make all around gifts for a bridal party (customize the front  embroidery to Mrs and bridesmaids names on the front), baby shower, birthday, Christmas, and everything in between. 

See how to make these below and oh the possibilities of Machine Embroidery are endless! 



DIY: Scarf to Kaftan

Now that the weather is getting warmer, I've already started to sew my summer wardrobe. For me, living in the South, that means looks that can transition from the beach to lifestyle and made of light materials. I had this blanket scarf for awhile now and I got it because the China blue print (my fave) and gauze fabric. I'm not a scarf person and look at them more as fabric for projects rather than a neck accessory. The material and size of blanket scarves make great cover ups, kimonos, and kaftans. They generally measure about 1 yard of fabric and made in fabrics like gauze, chiffon, or knits. Bonus points for not having to finish side edges... Since we were headed to the beach this past weekend I thought I'd whip up a kaftan from this scarf to wear. It was simple to do with Dritz 2-Part Eyelets and 2-Part Eyelet Tools to create the drawstring casing. This piece is also a nice transitional piece from beach to dinner by just adding a strappy dress or white jeans underneath.

Get the details below on how to make your own kaftan from a scarf:



DIY: Sewing SportsWear

 I've recently been getting into sewing Sportswear lately, so I was thrilled when Stylish Fabric wanted to partner with me to create an athletic look using their fabrics. As a competitive track athlete since I was 5, running is right there with my sewing passion so whenever I can combine the 2 is my perfect combo. I've been lucky enough to wear test samples for many global sports brands before they even hit production. I've seen first hand what goes into quality Sportswear. Fabric is key and thankfully I found my go-to from Stylish Fabric. They have everything from Spandex to Power Mesh and everything in between at affordable prices.

For this first look, I went 90's inspired with the trendy cycling shorts. Very Euro-Track! They're perfect for spring conditions where the weather is in between but also proper enough to run errands post workout with the kids. 

Get the details below on how to make your own cycling shorts and tips on sewing Sportswear. (Part 2 Sports Bra coming soon)