Thursday, May 13, 2010

The Evolution of a $2 Dollar Cami..

Passing by a clearance rack I had the urge to buy this fugly yellow cami . Mostly because it was $2. I don't know what I was thinking. It is the color of a neon dandy lion. A color only a child to wear. Well..... O.k. Make something for a kid out of it , right? And away we go.
This is the evolution of a $2 Cami. A tutorial of sorts.

 This is a Woman's XL in size. I pressed it then folded it in half. I cut the bottom off ,leaving 5 inches on top for making straps and roses.

Fold down 1 1/2 inches from the top edge of the bottom , and press. This will then be sewn to create a casing for elastic. Don't forget to leave an opening to thread the elastic.
 I used 1 inch elastic that has a soft surface on one side. My sister gave this roll to me years ago. It is used for making sportswear. I love it . It allows you to have the elastic next to the skin without the itch. I think you could find it at one of the big sewing stores.
  Measure your girlies chest for the elastic. Use you favorite method to insert through casing and sew ends.
Sew the opening you left for the elastic. .This is what you end up with. At this point you could use your own imagination to embellish or not. It would make a GREAT play skirt. And you can use any T- shirt for this project.

Now for the shoulder straps.
This method is a little tricky but super fast and has a cute ruffle effect.
 With your leftover piece of the cami  fabric cut 4 1/2 inch strip.
 Then cut a 1 1/2 inch strip. Cut the pre-sewn seams so that you end up with two pieces.No leftover seams.
 My strips measured 18 inches. Then cut two pieces of elastic. 2/3 the size of the fabric. I cut 12 inches.
 Pin at one end.Then the other.
 Mark centers with pins fold both in half.
 Pin together marked centers of both fabric and elastic together.
 This is what you end up with. Now off to the machine.
 You are going to start by sewing a couple stitches and leaving your needle in the down position. That will hold the elastic and fabric in place.
 Now stretch and and sew close to the edge of the elastic. Holding the pined center.Then the end.
When you sew the other side you will need to really keep it going straight. It will want to pull a bit to the side.

Finished product is this cute ruffle strap. The wider the fabric the more ruffle effect you will have. 
Now have your girlie try on the shirt. Mark the straps to fit her. Cut of any extra strap and sew on.
Now let's ruffle and rose.
 Now cut some 1 inch strips.I cut 2 the cut in half so it was on long strip of fabric. We are going to ruffle them. If you have not ruffled ...this will be so fun.
 Set your machine to the longest stitch length. And your tension to its highest setting.
This is a photo of mine.
 Just sew straight down the middle. Look how cool this works.
 At this point I decided to make roses . But you could just sew the ruffles on anywhere.
For the roses. Roll your ruffles.
 After you roll . Put a pin through the middle. The fold the bottom ruffles toward the top ruffles.
If you like it , go to next step.
Hand sew the roses together to secure them. I just sewed the needle through and through. About 10 times. Going all around the rose.  Now position on the top. 
When you get the effect you like. Make two more.  If you like them.
 Attach to the top by hand . Like a button.

Perfect swing top for summer.
Pin It


  1. that was so well done and I would never have thought of that, thanks

  2. WOW! That is so cute! See...I'm super lazy and I don't know how to sew clothes. So I look at that and see a whole lotta work that I could have gone out and bought my daughter a $4 shirt/tank that would "do". But kudos to you for seeing past a "regular ol' cami" and making it into something so original and pretty!

  3. That is really cute, and the tutorial appears to be really clear, straightforward, and easy! Thanks so much for sharing this; you have GOT to make this a tute button on your sidebar, like what the "big girls" have!

  4. So glad you are back posting again! I realized a while back that I wasn't getting any email updates from I went directly here and saw that you hadn't been posting.... so glad you put up this tutorial. I am mostly a quilter, but with 2 little girls, I am wanting to head into the kid clothes making arena! Thanks!

  5. Cute shirt! Glad to see that you are back :)

  6. really was one of my favorite colors when i was a little girl

  7. Just wanted to let you know that I finally got around to making myself a quilt with that fabric from your giveaway! I put pictures on my blog.

  8. Wow, great transformation! It looks wonderful on your little girl.

  9. That is absolutely adorable! What a creative use for a good buy!

  10. What a wonderful transformation! It looks terrific on her.

  11. Too Cute, Thanks for sharing!

  12. I would have never thought of that! It's amazing! Now the discount rack can be full of inspiration.

  13. Nice job! I love the color and the ruffles and roses are very pretty touches. And I have that June Taylor ruler in your pictures -- it is my favorite of all time!

  14. Love this top, so simple and sweet. I'm inspired to make one for my daughter now!
    Thanks for the excellent tutorial.

  15. Absolutely adorable! I love finding such creative people like you! I shared your adorable tutorial on my Facebook Fan page:!/pages/Treasures-for-Tots/189979926301?v=wall&ref=ts

  16. Oh what a perfect idea!!!!!

    Thank you for showing.

    LG Nimue

  17. OMG!!! you are so good and this tutorial was so easy to follow. Hooray, a sewing blog that makes me feel I can be adventurous with a safety net! Thank you.