I love making little holiday outfits for my girl. A few years ago, when I started sewing, I would get all excited about the holiday fabric. But it does seem awfully wasteful to buy novelty fabric that she'll only wear for about a month before the holiday (or sometimes just on the day, hello, St Patrick's Day) to make an outfit you know won't fit her next year. SO I've made a little promise to myself to use what I have for holiday outfits, unless I have nothing at all. Or unless its really, really cute fabric.
Which brings us to Valentine's Day and this plain little white tee we had. With a stain on the center (what kind of crazy person buys a white tee for a child?) What better way to cover up a stain than with applique? But not just an ordinary applique, one made from woven ribbon!! (Which works out well for me because I have lots of ribbon!!)
I'm really excited about this project, it was super fun and quick to finish. My daughter is delighted with the finished project. And I'm using the woven ribbon concept on a dress I'm hoping to finish this week!!!
I've used woven ribbon in a couple other projects (done before my blog so they aren't on here) and I've experimented with different widths, types of ribbon and patterns vs solids. I like them all!! :) I will say I prefer to use satin ribbon, because grosgrain is just a bit stiffer; harder to work with on the sewing machine and sometimes too heavy-feeling on the child. (If yours is a princess and the pea, like mine.)
Here's what you need:
Ribbon 3-4 colours
Throw pillow (I'll explain later)
Lots and lots and lots of pins
Double sided fusable interfacing
Sewing machine, needle and thread, scissors (the usual)
So to begin, choose your ribbon. I chose a red, pale pink and hot pink, because they are Valentiney and because they were in my ribbon stash. :) Cut a small piece of ribbon off and soak in hot, hot water for about 30 minutes to make sure that it won't bleed on the finished product. I tend to use Offray ribbon, it is friendly to my budget, doesn't bleed and washes well.
Grab a throw pillow and get ready to weave!! I like to do the weaving on a pillow, because I can pin the ribbon to the pillow so the ribbon won't go anywhere, and it gives a little underneath, which makes the weaving easier. Cut strips of ribbon a couple inches longer than your desired applique size, and lay out your horizontal ribbon. Pin each end to the pillow. I've found that I like the finished pattern weave best if I use one colour per direction. So since I'm using red and dark pink on the horizontal line, I won't use them in the vertical line.
Once you are set, take strips of your vertical ribbon (I'm using light pink) and begin to weave. Remember doing this with construction paper in grade school?? This part is also fun to do with the kids. :) Once you weave the pink all the way through, slide it over so its straight and snug with the ribbon beside it.
Once you're done, pin the vertical ribbon on both ends, but don't pin it to the pillow, pin it to the edge of the ribbon on the ends. Does that sentence even make any sense? Refer to the picture below on this one. ;) Then remove the pins that are attached to the pillow, one by one, and pin them to the ribbon only. Now you can pick up your woven ribbon piece and work with it!
Trace a heart shape on the paper side of your interfacing. I didn't attach a template for this, I'm betting you know how to draw a heart. ;) Lay the ribbon right side facing down on the ironing board, and place the fusable interfacing over it. Press.
Remove the pins, cut out your heart shape and carefully peel back the paper. Ta-da!! A ribbon heart!!
Place the heart where you want it on the tee, press in place and then carefully zig-zag stitch all the way around the heart. I say carefully, because the top layer of ribbon won't be fused to the ribbon underneath it and can slide around if you go too fast.
La-la-la! Now you have a fun and fabulous Valentine Heart Tee!! And because you didn't use any holiday fabric, this is one that can be worn after the holiday as well! ;)
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