Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Happy 4th + Striped Nails and DIY Head Wrap

Happy 4th of July, Americans!
Let me tell you what, I've been around the world and we are so fortunate. I've seen places where entire villages use the same river to launder their clothes, rid themselves of trash, bathe + drink. I've seen "homes" made from chicken wire and sheet metal pushed against each other, with only a few boards on top as a roof.
John has met with families who sold their children into slavery, little girls and less often boys, for a weeks' worth of wages.
Every day I think of how blessed I am to have been born here. In a free country where even those we often consider to be in poverty are living a much better quality of life than the majority of the world. How incredibly fortunate I am. So, to all of you who have protected us and those who have fought to keep our country great, thank you so so much. You are heroes.
That being said... I'm not really into patriotic wear. I don't like to wear flags, let's just get it out there. I decided to show you two festive DIYs today for those of you who are like me, but still want to say, "hey America, I love you."
First up- nails. I wrote yesterday about how I'm really getting into fun manicures at home lately. I went a little wild on my hands today and made some different patterns with nothing but a little masking tape and scissors (in addition to nail polish, of course!).
Ready? Let's take a look at this super simple way to stripe it up. I'd love to do this again with just blue + white stripes, nautical looks speak to me. And I love stripes.
(1) Base it. I started with two coats of white polish that I let dry overnight. It's best to really let your nails dry between the base and the taping, otherwise the tape can rip off the base coat. Let's tall about how much I love a white manicure for summer. I'm sure I'll remove all of this polish tonight and go back to a straight up white nail session.
(2) Tape it + Coat it. Here I just cut up thin strips of masking tape and applied them to my nails, then I alternated red and blue polish.
(3) Dry it. Allow your nails to dry and remove the tape. You can leave it alone or put a top coat on. I think the big blocked red/white/blue thumbs and pinkie are my favorite. I'd do them all that way if I did it again.

Next we have a little head wrap I made from an old t-shirt. There's a lot of flex in this tutorial depending on how much time you have to spend on it and whether or not you want to sew. Also- the vision for your finished project. I started with this tighter t-shirt that I never wear.
If something has sat in your closet for multiple years, it's time to either donate it or refashion it. Today- we're refashioning. Plus, the cropped remaining version of the shirt will be super cute over my swimsuit in the pool. Just a little added protection for my shoulders.
(1) Cut it. Decide if you're going to sew (or use no-sew bond). If you're going to sew/hem, then cut your strips double width of what you want the final product to be. If you want a more casual piece, you can leave it be since jersey knit will roll, but not fray. Because my shirt was tight, I had to cut TWO strips. Take a measuring tape and run it around the length of your head to decide whether or not you'll need two. If you want the wrap to go twice around your head (like mine) or just once, take that into consideration.  Next, cut your strip(s) across the seam so that it lays open.
(3) Double it. If you're using two strips, attach the ends together with the RIGHT (or pretty/patterned) side facing in. Stitch them together/attach with your medium of choice.
(4) Hem it. With the right (or pretty/patterned) sides facing in again, fold the width in half all the way across and pin. Then attach using your method of choice (no-sew bond, sewing, etc.). Again, you can skip all of this if you're inclined because t-shirt material (jersey knit) doesn't fray. If you want a clean finished look, sew on, baby.
(5) Finish it. After you've hemmed, flip the product right side out so that the seams are inside of the tube. The next part is optional- for a very finished look, tuck the ends inside on each side as seen above, then right a straight stitch across.
(6) Wear it. I wrapped mine around my head, starting at the crown, looping around and coming back up. Then I knotted it and tucked the ends under for a nautical look. You can also make a big bow or tie the ends at the bottom by the nape of your neck... whatever you want!
YAY! I love easy projects. I hope you have a wonderful day. If you're celebrating independence today, remember to stay safe and be grateful! And as always, thanks for reading. 

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