Monday, December 17, 2012

DIY: Sequins

I'm not sure if the title of this post is misleading. This is NOT a "make your own sequins" post but rather an entry about sewing sequins on boring things to make them look a little prettier, a little sassier, a little more holiday appropriate. And, I've stopped trying to make excuses for "this is not really travel related but I am going to post it on this blog anyway"-style posts. I'm just going to do it unabashedly because you know what? This is my blog and I'll post what I want to (Cyndi Lauper reference).

If you are like me, you despise going to the mall this time of year because of many reasons, and I will list the top three reasons here:
  1. It is too crowded, no matter what time of day I go (lunch break, after work, during work), because everyone is trying to get their holiday shopping done.
  2. The parking lots are super full and I end up wasting time (and gas) trying to find a spot.
  3. I have to wear a warm coat (because it's winter) and because the parking spot I've found is almost a mile away from the entrance, I can't just leave it in the car, I have to wear it. And then once I'm in the mall, I am way too warm and have to either endure the heat of wearing a winter coat indoors or I have to drape it over my arm and end up with sore "biceps" (because I am just that weak).
So, when I'm feeling like, "I HAVE NOTHING TO WEAR!" instead of going to the mall, I just take something I already own and make it a little cooler. I will confess that the dress I jazz up in this post is a new purchase from H&M from a few days after Black Friday and that is because 1) I had something I had to exchange and 2) I was at the mall already after dropping my sister off at the bus stop so she could go back to school (the bus stop is in the parking lot of the mall).

Now, onto the photos! First, a shot of the $10 dress I bought. It is a lovely dusty rose color, which isn't too apparent in this photo. It is a faux satin with a tulle overlay (2 layers of tulle, actually) and has a small zipper detail in the back. It is not a boring dress, by any means, but it could use a little spice.
For this project, you will need:
  • needle and thread
  • sequins
  • and there are beads pictured here but I ended up not using them so ignore them
  • also, my dog's paws are in this photo because he was being an ass and wouldn't get out of the shot
And here, I am attaching a lovely pictorial, drawn by yours truly, of how to sew sequins onto fabric. It's really quite sophisticated and nice so don't be too impressed (that is pure, unadulterated sarcasm, people). No, but really, I think it's a nice and simple pictorial that should help you, if you are new to this whole hand sewing game.

1) place your sequin where you want it and stick the needle and thread through the back of the fabric and up through the hole in the sequin
2) sew back down through the fabric (in whatever direction you want the sequins pattern to continue) just at the edge of the sequin
3) place your next sequin down, overlapping the edge of the next sequin just next to the hole of the previous one... and repeat until you've sewn all the sequins you want!

So after a bit of brainstorming, I decided I wanted to trim the bottom of the dress with sequins. It was nice sewing through the tulle because I could just shove the needle through one of the little holes and I could see exactly where the needle was coming through.
I love this photo because of how fluffy the tulle looks, but I took this shot to show the progress I was making.
This is a nice shot of the sequins as well.
And then I hung up the dress to take a few more photos.
Look at my hard work!
This is the dress hanging up in TERRIBLE lighting. I'm not sure when I'll be wearing this dress but when I do, I will try to take a photo and post it so that it looks a bit nicer.
If you decide to take on this project, just know that it does take a bit of patience but once you get into the swing of things, it gets easier and goes by quicker. I sat and finished trimming the bottom of my dress in three episodes of Parks & Recreation, which is just over 1 hour. And I am a slow beginner sewer... no, that's not the right word... seamstress? Whatever, I am a beginner, so that should give you some perspective.

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