80s Vintage Slouchy Tee

Hi! Hi! HI!!! I’m so excited to share this lil project with you guys, since I’ve been hoarding this Slouchy Tee pattern for months and FINALLY got my ass in gear to make it for V. This will *not* be a tutorial, since this pattern does not belong to me – it DOES belong to the wonderful Maggie at Vagabond Stitch, and I don’t plan on angering her since everything else in her shop is currently in my Etsy cart. HOLLLAAAHHHHH. Okay, I’m done. I told you I was excited. ::shrug:: ::anothershrugwithairhorn::

So, I’m just gonna share a little bit of the process, and mostly photos this time…

First off, if you have any reason or desire to sew quick and easy and super cute clothes for beebs, Vagabond Stitch is the place to go for patterns. After sewing this shirt (YESTERDAY! ALL YESTERDAY! My goal was just to cut the pattern pieces, but huzzah! I am success, embodied!) I definitely have plans to make about 37 more, so I can’t recommend Maggie’s shop enough. Her instructions are so clear and beautiful, including comprehensive measurements, tips for the digital files you receive, and real garment photos, which made this project not only simple but also very enjoyable.

I came upon this stupid-adorable ballerina fabric a few weeks ago at a THRIFT STORE and scooped it right up, with this slouchy tee in mind. Naturally, I did not press it before this photo…

It wasn’t until I did press it that I realized some beautiful creature had hoarded this wonderful fabric away for 33 years, so my little pumpkin beans could deck out in something I would have worn at three years old. Priceless.

Soft. Soooooooo soft.

I was working with this little maroon dash line, since 12-18 months is what I was after. Again, super clear and amazing instructions. This is a perfect project if you are afraid of patterns like I used to be. Ahem.

You so crazy, Swedish Tracing Paper, I think I wanna have yo baby.

[ trace, trace, trace ]

All my pattern pieces are cut!

Measure 239 times, cut once!

The grid of my cutting mat was giving me a special kind of life working with such a specimen of 80s perfection.

Mmmmm… matching front and back.

and then, and then, and then…

Quick break to be a jungle gym.

v patient. v, v patient.

Huzzah!

She abandoned her own thread project to tolerate Mom’s fashion show, lol.

She just turned 11 months, but I chose to do the 12-18 month pattern, so her new sweater should fit nicely all throughout the winter! Aaaand now that I know I can knock it out pretty quickly, I’ll make her another one in 9-12 months for Fall.

Cuffed and uncuffed. The bottom hem is straight; that’s just the wave from being hung up. And that’s it! BAM! Slouchy Tee.

I. LOVE. THIS. PATTERN! and can’t wait to make more in other fun fabrics. Again, Vagabond Stitch is where it’s at ❤ Thanks, Maggie!

What are YOUR favorite quick sew projects??

-Chelsea

Why ontaskshop?

This photo about sums it up. Y’all. Y’ALL… Let me tell you about this gorgeous wooden letter board. I found it on etsy, and being freshly pregnant, begged Hubbo to let me get it for my “weekly pregnancy updates because baby look, isn’t it so pretty and after the baby comes we can use it for all the stuff (she) does and OMG PLEASE IT’S JUST SO BEAUTIFUL AND SPECIAL!!?” He said yes to its excessive price and little to no personal ROI, poor chap. I couldn’t wait for it to get here and got to work planning out exactly how I wanted to use it. It arrives, just as beautiful as in the photos. I immediately spend the next hour+ snapping and twisting the 8,000 characters from their plastic prison in preparation to create our pregnancy announcement. Go to start putting the letters in place, and practicing for labor as well, apparently… push… Push… PUSHHHHHHHHHH!!!!! Nothing. The damn things won’t fit into the grooves. I went to retrieve my little green vintage studio hammer and tap tap tapped those little suckers in. God forbid one wasn’t in the exact right spot – because it takes digging out with an unwound paperclip to fix (which I did, several times) FINALLY finished and yeah, it did look spectacular. I proudly took my photo, posted, and watched as likes and loves and “about time”’s poured in.

The next time I used it was for the birth announcement.

The third time I used it was for this, today. (and discovered that if I photograph it from above the letters can just be laid down on it and *almost* no one is the wiser, halleluyer! Time #4 might actually be before 2022. Hot. Damn.)

This morning, before the most recent paperclipping. My child is 8 months old, y’all. EIGHT.
Also, I wrote a blog post instead of drying my hair, because Business.

This level of toil for a photograph, on a regular basis, is something I am not here for. I’ve tried in the past, especially when I first started creating art I wanted people to see in the context of a business, to force myself into having the perfectly composed, dreamily filtered images – the ones that say “Oh hai, you; it’s me. Look how good I look. If you buy me, you’ll look this good, too. And, like, your life will be at least 92% better once I’m hanging on dat wall… probably.” Not to mention losing my mind over ideal post schedules. Sometimes it worked, most of the time it didn’t. That pressure more often than not just resulted in me not photographing or sharing work at all, and sometimes not even MAKING the work in the first place, so I could be off the hook for all that imminent mess. That’s… not good.

Aaaand, excellent segue into how ontaskshop came to be. I’ve only recently, at age 36, realized the detrimental effect being labelled a “problem child” continued to have on me into adulthood, and my perception of personal success and failure in structured activity. I never seemed to be doing what I was “supposed” to have been doing, and was constantly reminded of such. I was too interested in what was going on outside the windows to focus on cursive or times tables (which I already knew and was bored to tears having to sit still through), or excited by trying to make classmates laugh when we should be working. “STAY ON TASK!” seemed to be my own personal Disney anthem – that song that no one knows is coming, yet somehow everyone in the village knows all the words when the music starts. The phrase was beaten over my head throughout childhood to the point I no longer heard it, or at least in no way obeyed. You know when you say a word too much and it just starts to sound so weird you forget what it means? (Food, food, food, food, food. Wat even is that? Every time, ha!) It was like that. I hated it so much I even rebelled against activities I enjoyed! I’m just not gonna do ANYTHING!! That’ll show ‘em! (???) Again, not good.

A few years ago when I needed a business name that better encompassed my new direction of art-making and showing and selling for ME, and my own sanity as a creative person, rather than trying to elbow my way into an already crowded field of social media and branding perfection, I cheekily chose to reclaim and rock the old derogatory, making it 100% Mine. So now I’m always on task, since I’m the one deciding what the task is. S’real simple. This is why you’ll see me making/sharing/selling acrylic paintings on panel or paper one day, and figuring out how to sew or alter some random thing the next. I might write a blog post featuring the Mom-est diy craft project ever, or a semi profanity-laden opinion on some current event, or just a few photos of something I’m making or wearing, without much comment. My inspiration and motivation come from allowing myself the freedom to be that authentic. I won’t bullshit you and I won’t pressure my content into that perfection that so often for me equals inaction. I think my business and art are better for it, and I hope you’ll share your own work and story with me, too.

Chelsea

(POST-Post-disclaimer: None of this is to say I don’t appreciate the value and aesthetic of those gorgeous Instagram feeds, because I ooh and aah over them daily! I bought a $55 nearly unusable wooden letter board because of genius marketing here people, FFS. And I am always working to better myself and learn new and interesting ways to share my life and my business – I just recognize and appreciate the self-awareness to know if that were the only successful way, I might as well stop now and go catch up on my DVR. #masterchefjuniorftw Cheers!)

Terrazzo Nails

I’ve been on a terrazzo kick lately, so when I had 20 minutes to paint my nails for the third time since this child was born, I thought I’d better do the damn thing. If you’re like, “…Terrazzo? WTH is terrazzo? Mine eyes have never gazed upon such a thing,” you’re like, totally wrong. I’ve seen you down at the courthouse, girl, don’t even play. Most typically seen in flooring, terrazzo is, per Dictionary.com, “flooring material consisting of chips of marble or granite set in concrete and polished to give a smooth surface.”

Now it can be found all over the place in jewelry, shower curtains, and rocking some Jordaches and smoking a real skinny menthol 100 behind the bleachers. Kidding, kidding. Anywho, my old studio floor was a sort of terrazzo linoleum, and I was molto obsessed with it.

For your reference, I have rounded up some tasty terrazzo treats, and they looka lika dees…

mmm yes… come to mama
yes, yes go on…
okay okay stop it’s too much

So while V played Gran Turismo 74 (probably, I dunno) with Dad, I rounded up the usual suspects. Coincidentally, these are also the colors that have been flooding my paintings recently…

Step one is always to chop and file these suckers as short as they’ll go, for all that clay work I’m forever saying I’m about to do, right before I realize the Forensic Files marathon happens like, EVERY day. The process couldn’t be simpler; just start putting random marks on your nails. Any shape will do. I wanted some of them to overlap, so I just waited a couple minutes between adding the next color, and it worked out fine.

To finish it off, I gave the claws a nice buffing with the floor sander double coat of my favorite quick dry stuff, aptly named “Seche Vite,” which I’ve been in love with for several years after a friend’s recommendation (thanks, Holly <3). Et voila! Terrazzo nails! Just enough self care to hold off on that shower for a few more days without looking TOO scandalous. I figure it will wear nicely too, since there’s no base color and the grow out won’t be super obvious. Cash me in three months with the next paint job, fam.

Milk Storage Sensory Bags

At some wee hour of the night while I was awake with the baby (your guess is as good as mine) I thought to make her some sensory bags to play with as we practice sitting up. By some magic stroke of genius I then thought, “HOT DAMN! … I could probably whittle down some of this milk storage bag collection still lurking around the kitchen.” So, here we are. This is a complicated one, folks, (sorry, Felicia <3) so prepare yourselves…

I started off by gathering up some supplies – milk storage bags, and some stuff to put in them. I told you it was gonna be rough. The “stuff” I decided on for the two bags I planned to make was some glitter of varying colors and shapes, and some weird thrifted yarn from approximately 37 years ago, that I’ve done almost nothing with despite refusing to let it go. What can I say, y’all? #sparksjoy

Hiding at the bottom of this catch all for weird shit vintage Miracle Whip jar was a scrap cake of various yarns and threads left over from past projects, (again, why are these things I keep?) just waiting for a new shot at life. What better way to introduce V to the fabulous world of textile art than chopping it to bits and letting her smoosh away to her heart’s content? I decided to toss in some of this awesome neon orange too, just to be extra. This is where my tendency to careen straight down the rabbit hole (Do not pass GO. Do not collect $200…) comes in… I started thinking about these scraps and the long-forgotten projects they’d come from. Who even was I in those times, and what if I’d known then that their destiny was to be covered in goo, made into playthings for a sweet little brown-haired beeb I could not yet imagine existing? Something slightly less mystical told me to keep (::cough::hoard::cough::) them. Life, you crazy.

After round one, here’s what we were working with. They say you’re supposed to use hair gel as a vehicle for the smooshing, but I got me a pomade man, and there was no gel to be found. You don’t have to be a girl scout longer than one year (apparently) to know how to improvise. I found this face wash I’d put in the shower, let’s just say 37 years ago (my poor husband) and knew it would be missed by exactly no one. Business time. (Pay no attention to the certainly, very alive air plant in my laundry room.)

Again, very alive. Nothing to see here; moving on…

Right about now I realized the bathroom garbage needed to go out, and for once did the honors. The joy of finding the new bag to be the last we had also led to the above discovery. Does anyone actually use these twist ties for ants? I certainly ain’t got time for that. Instead of going to their usual retirement home of the recycle bin, another one of my crazy ideas hit, and you heard it here first; A THIRD BAG was born! Yes indeedy, I must have gotten an extra forty-five seconds of sleep last night because I was on a roll.

Pumped in what seemed to be the right amount of face wash, leaving the twist ties dry, and sealed those puppies up! We probably could have done without the “foaming” nature of the wash, but hopefully I’ve still got a few years months before my child starts scarring from all the horrible things I do.

Slapped some duct tape over the bag tops to seal them extra, then some more tape to stick them to the wall in prime sittin’ zone. I knew they’d probably need to be taped at the bottom as well, since anything V can grab wants to go straight in the mouth, and that impossibility would piss her clean off, but first wanted to see if she even liked them. Cuteness beginning in 3… 2…1…

I always think she looks like a Garbage Pail Kid with her hair like this. You’re welcome for that.

About to be v mad… V MAD. Told ya so.

SUCCESS! So, I’ll definitely be taping the bottoms as well so she can moosh and smoosh without that little vein popping out of her forehead as she tries in vain to pry them off the wall and into her mouth, but overall, 10/10 would make again. Also, this is the first time she’s really sat up on her own for more than a few seconds, and that was the goal, so I’ll be waiting for my mom trophy in the mail. That’s how this thing works, right?