Thursday, June 13, 2013

Lace and Tulle Flower Girl Dress Project


     If you know me at all, or have read more than one post on here, you know I LOVE Pinterest.  My sweet friend Angie is getting married to her long term beau this month! YAY!! And she found this gorgeous dress on Pinterest. 

It can be bought from “Frills from top 2 bottom” on Etsy for about $80 .  Here is the link to her shop. 
     Angie asked me if I could make her one.  I thought “well, why not?”  So it became my mission to make a similar dress for Angie as a present. 

1.       First I drew up a design

 

2.       And found a shirt on a FB For sale page in my area

3.       Also, the bride sent me some matching lace from her dress.

4.       I then, took a shirt from my son (who is the same age as the flowergirl 3).  I took the shirt and traced the front of it on a page of scrapbook paper.  This turned into my pattern.   

5.       I turned the shirt inside out and drew the pattern onto it, pinned it and the lace on the shoulders.  I then began sewing.   

6.       This is where all of that tulle came into play.  I used about 8 yards on the front part of the dress.  I cut about 1 yd sections.  I rolled it from the fold all the way down to the ends.  It looked like a long tube of tulle.  I then cut the tube every 3 in.  The then unrolled the small 3 in sections and cut the strip at 22in.  I pinned about 4 rows of tulle and sewed them to the top, one row at a time.

7.       Then I cut about 9 in of knit, non roll elastic and sewed it to the top and little pieces of ribbon to hold onto the straps in the back.  I then cut more tulle for the dress.  These strips were twice as long and double knotted over the elastic.  I used about 4 yards for this.

8.       I also glued little Rhinestones on the top.  So are in the front and others are on the lace straps.
 
Here are some finished pictures: 
 

I think it turned out really well.  I can’t wait to see the pretty little flowergirl in this dress!!! She’s going to be stellar.
Ashley
PS Please remember to click on an ad or two on the side or bottom of this post and help my little family raise some money. Thank you



My Half Marathon Tips


 
     HELLO to all my Pinterest visitors!!  I hope these tips help you and please click on an ad to the side of or below this post as a donation to the blog. Thank you. :)

     Now, as a disclaimer, I am not a professional marathoner nor am I working for any company that sells the products that I am about to mention.  This is just what I have learned from my limited experience in running.

1.    TRAIN TRAIN TRAIN!!! 

     The morning of the half marathon is really NOT the day to run the longest mileage yet.  Now by that I mean (for example) don’t “train” by running three miles like three times and then run this half marathon.  Yes, I did that, but I also had a stress fracture in my foot from it as well.  It is NOT a good idea.  On this last one, I ran 4 mile and 7 mile runs to practice.  This was good enough for me.  Find what is best for you: run longer, faster, etc.

 
2.    Drink more than just water!  

     Every few miles there will be a water station.  You can grab a cup, trot for a minute while you sip/ chug/ slurp it down put some over your head. J  In between those points is when you’ll REALLY need hydration.  Also know that sometimes you need more than just water to stay hydrated.  You need salt (sodium).

      I found a great “Gu” brand drink mix that I like to use.  It has “2x more sodium” than other drink mixes.  This appealed to me since my body seems to force the salt out faster than the average person.  By the end of my first half marathon, I was dizzy and almost passed out twice because of loss of salt in my system.
 

3.    Gu Gels!

     Now first thing about these, there are other companies that make gels.  I have only used the Gu brand and I like them.  There are some with and WITHOUT caffeine.  I prefer without.  They do not upset my stomach like the other ones do.  Some people can just open and slurp these things down.  I cannot.  I have to take my time and take “sips” of them until it is gone.   It is good to start with your first one around mile 3 or 4.  The instructions say every 45 minutes of your workout or race.  If you feel weak or run down, have them more often.  I had 3 in this last half marathon: mile 3, 6 and 10.  You can practice on your training runs to see when you will need them.  I did not, but it can’t hurt.
 

4.    Get a hydration belt!

     If you are serious about running a LONG distance, you NEED a hydration belt.  You can put your id, credit cards, phone in the pouch, Gu brand gels can go in the small slots, and your drink mix/ water in the little water bottles.  These are great for those in between point hydration times. 

     There are different styles of belts.  Research and find the one that you can envision yourself using.  I picked one with two small bottles at the hips for $35.  If I only had one bottle at the back, I would go crazy!  It bugged me enough that I ended up adjusting mine (to stay more around my hips) during this race.  Not to mention the belt with one bottle bottle is tough to get out and who wants that thing sloshing around during your run?  Not this girl!!

 
5.    Wear comfy clothes!

     I was amazed at how many people were running in long sleeves and long pants.  It was HOT.  I get super warm while running anyways, so I made sure to wear shorts.  Some people run with spandex on under their shorts (like I do) others do not.  Wear what you feel comfortable wearing while you practice and train.  Don’t go from wearing spandex then not… you’ll hate life at mile 6 when your thighs are rubbing each other and chafing. :/ That sounds awful.  I like to have a short sleeve or no sleeve shirt, a material that will soak up my slightly runny nose (that I get while running).

 
6.    Shoes.

     Now, I know there are vendors at the expo before a race and it is a great time to get a deal on running shoes. Do NOT wear new shoes to a race.  You will hate yourself (and so will your feet).  Again wear what you practice in.  You will not regret it.
 

7.    Sunglasses!

     Holy oh MY goodness!! Yes, yes, yes.  Wear sunglasses.  I’m so glad I did during this race.  The sun was not only super hot, but super bright.  Protect your peepers and wear sunglasses that you like and that won’t slip down your nose.  No one wants to constantly adjust their glasses during a race.

     I have my Oakley’s (that I splurged on, so I could wear them in my everyday military uniform).  I made sure that they had the rubber parts on the ear pieces.  One reviewer of this product said she hung upside down with them on to make sure they would not fall off her face (I guess she was doing a race with obstacles that she had to hang from).  These ones are great for me and my small face.
 

8.    MUSIC!

     Not all races will allow you have wear headphones or ear buds, so check and see if you are allowed to on the race website.  I made a playlist of fast music that I really liked ahead of time.  The problem I ran into was that I didn’t make the playlist long enough.  I figured that while the music was set to shuffle that it would shuffle and repeat.  It didn’t.  So there I am at mile 11 pulling my phone out, hitting play again and trying to STUFF the phone back in the pouch and continue running.  I’m sure it only added seconds to my time, but WHAT A PAIN!  Make sure you have enough music on your phone, iPod etc that will last the entire run.

 
9.    Have a goal

       With that being said, have a goal time you would like to run in.  My first half marathon (with no real training) I ran it in two and a half hours (or 2:30 min/hr).  I wanted to do better this time and get about a 2:05.  I ended up running it in 2:21… not exactly what I wanted or hoped for, but it was still faster than 2:30.  I started with the run time that I thought I could do.  For short distances my average pace is about 9 minutes for a mile.  After about mile 8 I slow down to 10 minutes and so on until I finish. 

     Come up with a goal and get motivated! Train to meet this goal.  And don’t get too discouraged if you cannot achieve it.  No one seemed to know that this last race would be the weekend we would get super hot weather.  It was not normal.  That sure did slow me down.

 

Reflections

     I certainly felt like a little kid during this run.  It was HOT!! I mean HOT for Northern California.  I, more than once, found myself praying “Thank thee for trees and shade and wind… oh for that lady with the water hose on her back porch that sprayed me.”   I sounded like my three year olds with his nightly prayers: “Thank thee for windows and the sky and my bed.”

     I never thought I would be a runner.  And I especially did not think I would like it.  I am not a great or fast runner, by any means.  I like that it is time for me that is JUST FOR ME. I get out there and trot along (with a 10 minute pace or so) and just think of things that have been bugging me.  I get to really work out personal problems… I mean really… what are you going to do for 13.1 miles? Knit?  No!  You’re going to run, listen to music, and have your own thoughts to deal with. 

      Using these tips, I had a great run.  I was not super fatigued at the end.  I was not in SERIOUS pain.  I did not pass out.  And I even shaved 8 minutes off my over all time from the first one I ran.  I call that winning. 
Ashley
PS Please click on an ad to the right or below this post in hopes to raise some money for my little family. Thank you.
 
 
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