PORTRAIT v. 47

"a portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2013."



























this kid loves to swing, and doesn't care how cold it is outside.




joining in with sweet jodi.



DIY: make your pants into ankle skimming skinnies

jean shopping... oh jean shopping. let us talk about jean shopping ladies, and gents... if there be gents who read this little blog. this fall i was sucked into a black hole of hunting for the perfect skinny jeans that hit right at my ankle. the ones that are so chic and found in every jcrew and madewell catalog. the jeans that would cover my entire and ample backside, not give me "muffin-top", and make my legs look maybe slightly longer. yes, i was looking for a miracle. i tried many brands and shops, but was left unsatisfied with the fit of some, and unable to justify the price-tag of others. however i needed some pants since it is now getting too cold for skirts and i had only one pair of jeans that i had not made into cut-offs over the summer. so i started looking at what i had and realized i had three pairs of j.crew favorite fit corduroys that i had nabbed on clearance about four years ago. bootcut was still in style - sort of. i have never been one to be too trendy, and i have found that when i attempt to follow a trend i often look or feel ridiculous. jeans with a good fit, a soft tee or tank, over-sized button ups, and comfy knit (preferably cable-knit) sweaters have been my M.O. since i was a teenager. paired with good quality shoes or boots, often second hand, but with a ton of wear left in them. i keep coming back to these things with small variations here and there.

so i was looking at these bootcut cords. i liked the colors - navy, grey, and black... but the cut was boring me. so i took in the legs and chopped off the hems to my liking, and dang, if i didn't feel like a new woman after that. three pairs of re-purposed pants that fit me like a glove and make me feel like i have a whole new pants wardrobe.i saved a ton of money, which i can throw into my huge pile of student debt at the end of the month.... sigh...

i could rant for hours about college tuition and what a crock of crap it all is... but at the end of the day i am a nurse, who wouldn't be a nurse if i had not taken out a ton of student debt. so i have been working my butt off and have been on a "spending diet" for most of the year, with the goal of becoming debt-free. it has been good, but rough. lot's of self-hair cuts and making due with the stuff i have.

that's not to say that it isn't fun.. and making my own pants into the ankle-skimming skinnies of my dreams was much more fun than spending money

it's easy, and quick.. and you can totally do this. here's how:

this will work best with pants that are fitted in the waist, hip, and at least the upper thighs. you could try it with very baggy jeans, but i am not quite sure what the outcome would be - although it might be amazing. 

step one: try on your pants and take note of where the simple seam is - this is the one without any visible stitching, just the seam. then take them off, turn them inside out, and put them back on. yes, inside out!



step two: you should be able to pinch your simple seam and grab any excess fabric. take some pins and carefully pint the excess fabric starting at the top of the leg wherever the pants are loose, and working your way down.


step three: remove the pants, carefully, and look at where the pins are - you can take a white crayon and make a line to guide you as you stitch if you like. as your pins may not make quite a straight line here, and it will be much easier to sew in a straight-ish line.

step four: using your sewing machine sew down the leg where you have pinned - use a long stitch at first that way if it's too small or you don't like it you can remove it easily. i started above the knee and sewed down the leg to the ankle. then try on the jeans inside out again and check your fit - if you are happy then move along to step five, but if you are not then make another seam to take more in, or remove the seam and start over until you get it the way you like.


step five: i used my overlock machine to make a good sturdy seam and remove the excess fabric. if you don't have an overlock machine, then you can use a regular machine set to a close zig-zag stitch, and stitch the crap out of them. really, go down the leg at least twice to get them covered. then use pinking shears to remove the excess fabric. pinking shears are great to have if you are not ready to invest in an overlock machine. i own these, and i still use them often.


step six: hem them, or cut them off where you like, as i did. i like that the unfinished edge makes them feel more worn-in and less dressy, especially since cords always seem a tad dressier than jeans to me for some reason... i hope this shows they don't need to be. 



and, ta-da! there you go. a pair of pants that took ten minutes to alter, fit like a glove, and have satisfied my desire for something different in my wardrobe. 

easy right? if you have any questions, leave them in the comments and i will answer. if you are local and you don't have a sewing machine, bring me coffee, or offer me a hair-cut, and i'll alter your pants for you...

while ranting about student debt....



love,

lebo


PORTRAIT v. 46


" a portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2013."

she was upset because we were out of waffles, and angrily threw some refridgerator magnets on the floor. then she turned to me and quietly asked "not nice?". i shook my head, and she replied "i sorry."

then we made a big baked pancake.


joining in with jodi.




PORTRAIT v. 45

"a portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2013."



we saw our first flurries this week. winter is upon us.


favorites from this past week:

a protesting child dressed as a puppy, and a contented child dressed as a puppy.


joining in with jodi this week.



lebo loves...


this week i have been loving:

- chilly mornings full of hot beverages... i am drinking more tea now and finding it is very soothing.

- shepherd's pie. i made a mean shepherd's pie this week and ate the left overs for breakfast, lunch, and dinner until they were gone. 

- the short film "lost and found" adapted from oliver jeffers book (we love his books around here). it is just so so sweet, and heart-warming. the narrators voice is so calming... i want to kiss that voice on the nose. chloe asks for it at least three times a day (it is less than a half-hour long), and it doesn't annoy me one bit. 

- my new (to me) boots that i scored on ebay. they go with everything. they are brown, not to high, but just high enough, and a tiny bit classier than my flat hiking-esque doc martens (although, i am still going to be wearing those too). i took them for a long-ish stroll today with chloe and they didn't rub or pinch even once. what's not to love about perfect fitting second hand boots, right?

- bundling up and going for long walks with chlo, playing outside in leaves, taking long drives... doing anything that takes a long time and involves escaping from the house for a bit... having an adventure, no matter how small it might be.

- our local bakery, and their chocolate drop cookies... amazing. i am on a hunt for a really good black and white cookie in philadelphia... any suggestions?

- sauteed mushrooms! with brussel sprouts, by themselves, on toast... i like that they taste meaty, without being meaty... i like that they kind of taste like dirt.... they are my new thing.

- re-watching "girls" after chloe is asleep... the whole show makes me laugh, and worry, and then laugh even harder. and my favorite characters are adam, shoshana, and jessa - in that order. why they are my favorites is probably a whole blog post in and of itself. do you watch it? have a favorite character?


what are your favorite things lately?














okay, so...




so, i have been a mess.

i have been having issues. 

computer issues, where my battery died because i never plug my laptop in while i am using it, and it inevitably leads to my battery saying, "uhhhh..... no......"

mom-ing issues, where my toddler won't keep her diaper on in her crib and just treats it as a cage, going to the bathroom in one corner and sleeping in another.  and where she only eats rice and apples all day. unless i give her  snacks, in which case you can add a lolly-pop, a spoonful of peanut butter, or a bag of fruit snacks.

oh yeah, tonight we had this talk and i told her i will no longer lie for her. we need to go to the pediatrician tomorrow, and i know they are going to ask if she drinks from a bottle. i have been lying for her for the past year, and will not do it again. fyi, she has only been drinking milk from a bottle at bedtimes. all the rest of the time she drinks from a cup. 

tonight i put her to bed without giving her a bottle - i offered her a cup of milk, but she threw that with the most horrible look of disgust i have ever seen. you are glad you were not here for that.

she went out as a girl covered in bugs for halloween. she adores bugs, but i didn't think she would want to be one... so i covered a dress in five hundred plastic ones. there is something supremely therapeutic about hot gluing five hundred bugs to a toddler's dress.

so computer issues, mom issues... and then wardrobe issues, where i think i know what is happening with what i am wearing, and then i catch myself in the mirror mid-day and am like "what the hell!?!?! why did you go out like that??? what are you wearing??? where did you even get that!?!" and i run up the stairs and throw on pajamas and tell myself that i am not allowed back out.

and it's worse than usual. because those of you who know me personally, know... you know that i am like pseudo-hannah from girls when it comes to putting on clothing that should work, but just doesn't quite "do it". none of my outfits have been "doing it"... and i really need to stop looking at rompers. i should not own, or consider, or even borrow, a romper. 

and i am having infertility issues, which are the last issues i thought i would ever have. but dude, i haven't been able to get pregnant, and i want to, and i have been trying to.... 

so.... i bought this cream that should maybe help me become more "balanced" hormonally. if it is really the miracle cream that everyone says it is, i should loose ten pounds, get pregnant, my skin should clear up and become softer, i should have less cloudy thinking, and i shouldn't be itchy or moody....  but so far the only effect that i can see after one week is that i feel like i am in a bit of a better mood. this past monday i even had the urge to face-time a family member. so yeah, i guess i am in a much better mood. 

and then i have been having crazy skin issues.  how it works is this: i go to work with a clear complexion, and return home with huge cystic zits that linger until the following week, and clear. right before i go back to work again.

maybe this is actually a work issue... it seems to only happen when i go to work. 

so today i bought myself some burt's bees tea-tree blemish stuff, and it seems like it is already working. it is sharp, and tingly and feels like it is working. but, let me tell you - wash your hands after using that crap! even if you don't think you touched it, even if you don't think you need to. you don't want to rub that crap in your eyes!

okay, so....

computer issues, mom issues, wardrobe issues, skin issues, uterus issues....issues. we all have issues. even you... 

and your mom too. 


okay, so enough of this post. i guess this means i am back to posting. yaaaaaaay.....

and now, here are some photos:








 
oh yeah... and i have been cutting my own hairs.. more than i should...

but i have a pretty cute kid... even if she is angry.


it's good to be posting again. hope you are having a good week friend.

over and out...

PORTRAIT v. 44

"a portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2013."

sometimes when christian is working overnight we will run our errands in the evening after her nap. every now and then we will stop at sonic for dinner and share a hot dog meal. she gets the drink and fries, i get the hot dog. 


favorites from last week:

the most adorable beetlejuice ever! / exploring and enjoying a new home - that pony-tail and his little foot made me smile / so sweetly accessorized and smiling brightly.


joining in with sweet jodi.




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