Saturday, June 30, 2012

Upcycle all those mens t-shirts

I have a drawer full of T's that I NEVER wear! And the weird thing is that I only keep ones that mean something to me. So why don't I wear them you might be wondering...
Ok, so I have little things that drive me crazy. Here's a few
* stepping out of the shower onto a carpeted floor.ughhhh. gross.
* leftovers ( I try to save them, I know it's *smart*, but I just can't eat them!)
* wearing a me the willies!
* polo shirts on women ( that's a man's shirt, there are too many cute options to settle for a polo)
* crew neck t-shirts on ME.
SO that last one leads me to having shirts that have meaning to them to sit alone month after month in my drawer. I know they cry out to me. I do feel bad about this neglect. So after seeing this tutorial, I had a little glimmer of hope for all of these...

I love that I get a free T when I donate blood. Unfortunately many of these turn into *shirts I wear when I color my hair*. This one I got this weekend is a great navy color and I like the pop of yellow and nautical theme-ish look. It's a keeper to upcycle!
The other four are SUPER SUPER special to me! Each one represents a mission trip to Trinidad & Tobago with our church. The logos are even designed by one of our team members, I love each one of them. But my first confession today is that I don't wear them other than on our trip. I just don't wear crew neck t's and most of my t-shirts are men's style, boxy.
My dear friend in TandT just ordred a new sewing machine and shipped to me so I could test it out for her and bring it down to her in a few weeks. What a great craft to try on her new machine!
Thankfully all is wonderfully well with it because as soon as our boys found a big cardboard box in the house, they had a free for all! Thank you Auntie A for buying a new sewing machine!

So here's what I did to my first shirt...
I cut off the crew neck. And let me tell you how good that feels!! With this shirt I kept the rounded scoop neck shape. I folded the shirt in half to find the center. You can also look at the label to find the center. Basically you sew ( backstitching at both ends) a line down the middle from the top down to wherever you want it to stop. Your call. And I suppose it would depend on where your shirt logo starts.

You can make as many as you want across the front, going back and forth from the center one. Odd numbers look best, so 5-11 looks best. Then I turned under the raw edges and it cleaned it up a bit.

The great thing is, I didn't use one pin. Just turned it under a bit as I went along. I also cut off the bulky sleeves and added pin tucks there as well. Same thing, found the center of the sleeve by finding the shoulder and folding it there. You can make them here as short or as long as you want.

I also laid one of my favorite fitting shirts over top of this one to help as a guide as I brought in the sides. Not pictured, I tapered in the sides of the shirt when I turned it inside out. Just took in an inch or so and it added some shape to the sides.
In the above pic you can see that I wanted to add a little something to the back of the shirt too. I did the same here, found the center and folded it in half. Just did a few here to add more shape around the middle.

Here's the finished neckline. This is also a super special shirt that I'm really excited to actually wear! We ran in our first 5K together on Father's Day...A Run for Orphans. We had a great time with friends who share the same heart for the orphan.

Here it is...all finished! Now onto my other shirts!!!
What will you do with yours?

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Bustn' out some Blankets ~ every blanket has a stroy

It will be a first for us this Summer. And we sure don't have a clue how God will work this all out. But we have a peace about it. All of us have taken Missions Trips to Trinidad with our church over the past several years. But there is one of us that hasn't gone yet. This year we are so thankful that we have a peace about L's health and he will be joining in on the Mission Trip this July! What a blessing to do this all together as a family! This year comes with it's own challenges. Scheduling has already shown itself to be a speed bump. And the bigger possible issue is *what if* we have a foster placement during this time. Well, all I can say is we know HIS plan is perfect. I'm trusting God with ALL the details.
So moving forward, we see that it's gonna be another journey of faith as we need to raise about $6000 to fund our trip. Ouch! But let me tell ya, considering a family of 6 going overseas...well this is a wonderfully affordable Missions Trip.
One of the things I LOVE to do is make Chubby Baby blankets. And I'm excited to be making these blankets to give the proceeds directly to fund our trip.

Here's my most recent blanket for my dear friend's sweet baby girl. I can't wait to hand deliver this one to her!
The Chubby Baby blankets are square and they measure approximately 35x35 inches. The back is yummy, made with minkee or cuddle fleece.
I think one of my very favorites is one that I made for my youngest son when I was pregnant with him. I wrapped him up in it as soon as I could. That is one happy baby boy!

This little guy is 6 years old now and I LOVE that even now as I'm typing he's all snuggled up in his bed with his blankie. I'm not sure when it started, but for as long as he has had a choice in the matter, his preference is to have his blankie in a ball right under his feet. So funny this one.
L had to be quite patient for his blanket. He has a specific request...ORANGE OCTOPUS. Hmmm...And after some searching, I found the perfect fabric! He was so excited. SO excited in fact, that while taking it with him on some journey it has become M.I.A for a while now. We have given up on locating it and we are trusting that someone that needed a blanket more than he did is all snuggled up with it.

L is who inspired Chubby Baby...he was NOT chubby at all when he came 9 weeks early. But he has some lofty goals for himself and in a matter of months, he was C.H.U.B.B.Y!!! I made several blankets for him while he was in the NICU. I'm pretty sure one or more of those blankets are with him while he sleeps.
I don't just make Chubby Baby blankets. I was asked by my Chiro doc if I would make one for his wife for Mother's Day. It was her first, a new momma to beautiful twin girls. I thought, what a great gift!!! I'm pretty sure he scored HUGE points with his bride as she told me over and over how much she loved it as I had made blankets for her baby girls a few months early, and this one was HERS!

She had a great idea...she said these should be called Chubby Momma Blankets (although that doesn't apply to her AT ALL). They are also backed with the same snuggly minkee or cuddle fleece and are PERFECT for wrapping up with on the couch.
Some blankets are a long time coming.
There are a few beautful Asian baby girls who I have prayed and prayed for as I made them each a blanket as their Mommas and Daddys were putting together their final travel plans to go pick up their daughters. Adoption is a BEAUTIFUL thing! What a blessing to be able to make this special blanket.

So each blanket I've made has a beautiful story behind it, each one involves a MIRACLE! I love and find it an honor to pray over each little miracle who will be wrapped up in this made with love blanket.
I'm excited to see what blanket I can make for you! Need a gift? Know of a beautiful momma with a little one on it's way? I would love to make a Chubby Baby ( or Chubby Momma) blanket for you. The proceeds with go towards our family Mission Trip( you can read more about our Mission Trips to Trinidad in older posts). It's a double or triple blessing :) Feel free to send your requests to namerohrer at yahoo dot com.
Here's a few more pics of some very special blankets...there's a precious miracle one for each one...

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Bunk Beds for MORE??!!

Many will call us crazy, some to our face and some behind our backs ( nahhh, really?). And most who do are Christians just like us. But to be honest, I won't argue that. Yep we ARE crazy! Does it make sense to do this? Probably not. But that's ok too. *Can* we do this all on our own? NO WAY!
But here's the thing... God asks us to obey Him in the little things and the big things. And it's hard most of the time because it goes against who we are all on our own. And there's the key. We CAN'T do this all on our own strength. We are completely and totally depending on God to give us what we need to do this every day, every moment. 'Cuz it's gonna be hard! But the cool thing is, in the middle of all this is where God builds character. It's where He grows our faith in Him. And THAT'S where I want to be, that's where I want our family to be. Right in the middle of His will.
We have just about completed the process to be licensed to foster and adopt from our county's Children's Services. It's hard to put into words how this process is. We've learned more about hurting children than most people. It's so very sad to know how much the enemy loves how these children are hurting. But then we serve a God who is bigger and in charge. So we trust that even though horrible things are happening, he still heals and retsores. We want to have a heart like His and serve.
So what do we do when we decide to obey?
We move forward.
To be ready in our home, we need beds. We need bunkbeds. So I trusted God to provide what we needed. He did.
A generous family at church didn't know *why* we needed bunkbeds, they just heard we needed some. So they contacted us and we went to pick them up.
What a precious family! What a blessing!!
So Em got to work on her room. YIKES!! But this girl is motivated! All the kids are excited to see how God will bring children into our home in need of love.
She inlisted her sweet friend and they announced to me that it was lookn' bad. Em said it was like an episode of Hoarders!

But like I said, she was motivated and a couple hours later her room was ready for the bunkbeds to be moved in.
All 4 kids were Daddy's helpers and Em took over the finishing design touches. Take a look!!!

And watch we get two BOYS placed with us! Poor things!
That night as I tucked Em in bed, I walked out of her room with a feeling I had felt before.
It's the one where you know that something big is about it happen, something good, but so overwhelming you know you will be completely dependent on God to get you through this part of your journey.'s coming.
Those beds represent SO MUCH.
It's just a set of bunks...big deal. beds.
I pray that the little ones that will be tucked in a prayed with the nights that they are here with our family, that they will have never felt more safe and loved. That set of beds is where they will be prayed over! They will get read to! They will get snuggled up, tickled, hugged and kissed by 6 people that are sooooo excited to have them in our home. No matter how long or short. We will just obey and walk forward.