Hi there! I’m Brianna from the Observant Nomad and I’m here to share a special diy post just for Cocorrina readers. I hope you’re all enjoying these guest posts while Corina is away relaxing. When Corina asked me to come up with a diy post while she’s away on a stay-cation, I knew I had to say yes. I love everything this girl does; from gorgeous jewelry, to design, and all of it in between, she is killing it!
So when I started picking my brain on what to make, I knew I wanted to try my hand at a fashion trend for summer. Have you noticed the amazing kimonos that are everywhere right now? I love the detailed patterns, feminine silhouettes, and the fact that they make great cover-ups for the beach. Unfortunately they seem to be a tad pricey for such a trendy item. So I knew a kimono would be the perfect diy choice. But I am not very good with a sewing machine (and I know I can’t be the only one) so I decided to attempt to make my very own without any sewing! And it turned out to be pretty easy to do.
So here’s what you’ll need:
+ a square cotton/cotton-based scarf (about 40” x 40”) I used a thrifted scarf for my kimono – it already had these cute little tassels and was made of cotton which is important for the no-sew stitch witch tape. you might want to measure your arm span and use that length as the dimensions for your kimono. As you can see mine’s on the shorter side, so if you want to make yours longer you’ll have to use a scarf longer on one end.
+ decorative elements (tassels, fringe, etc.)
+ sewing pins
+ ironing board
+ washing cloth or dish cloth
1. Fold your scarf in half, and then in half again – if it’s square it doesn’t matter which side is first. If your scarf is longer on one side fold the shorter side in half on itself first, then the longer side in on itself.
2. Use a sewing pin to mark the corner where all the folds gather – this is the middle of the kimono and where we will cut the opening.
3. Unfold the scarf once, from left to right, be careful not to undo the pin, keeping the shorter side folded. Then using scissors cut a straight line, only through one layer of the fabric, from the bottom of the scarf where the fold was, all the way to the top where your pin is.
4. Now you can see this is the opening and where the middle of the kimono will be. Now slide your ironing board in between the back and now front of the kimono.
5. Now for the no-sewing! Open up your roll of Stitch Witchery tape and cut a piece that’s the length of the opening of your kimono.
6. Place the tape near the edge of the cut fabric and then fold the fabric edge over the tape, covering the tape completely. Pin it in place.
7. Using a warm iron, quickly run over the folded fabric to keep it in place. Then follow the directions on the back of the bonding tape package (you’ll need the dish cloth now). Repeat this step on the other side of the opening of the kimono
8. Once you have the opening of the kimono done, it’s time for sleeves! Keeping your kimono opening facing you, the two sides on the left and right will be the arm holes.
9. Place a sewing pin about half way down the right side. Then cut a piece of bonding tape the length from the pin to the bottom of kimono, and follow the same ironing steps as in #7. Repeat on the other arm side.
I know you may be more visually minded (I know I am) so here’s a little visual reference for all those words I’m using throughout these steps. The black lines are where the fabric bonding tape goes.
And done! This project probably took me about 15 minutes – it’s really that easy! Try playing around with different fabrics, decorative elements, and lengths.
Fabric bonding tape is magic stuff for us non-sewers. It’s like a dry strip of fabric glue, and once you use an iron and steam on it, the tape melts and glues the edges together. It can hold up in the washer if you fuse the tape properly. Just make sure to let it air dry – the packaging says its dryer safe, but I always stay on the safe side.
I can’t wait to wear this light-weight kimono to the pool or on a sunny day when I just want to cover my shoulders a little bit. It also helps make some of my summer clothes more work friendly. Can’t wait to play around with more styles and scarves.