Saturday, December 20, 2008


Finally posting my can tab favors from TRF.

can tab favors 2008

There a bit wrinkly from being in my pouch. I made most of what I passed out on the 4 hour drive to faire. They are made with just tabs, ribbon and a pinback or safety pin. Next time I plan to add a bottle cap center to them.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Turkish-style vest and belt

Thought I'd get around to posting my latest can tab creations. Yay!! I'm really pleased at how they turned out. (Not so pleased at my blinding white complexion or farmer-tanned arms. Yikes!) WARNING: You may need sunglasses to view these images.

I joined another Craftster swap (gallery) and my partner expressed a desire to own a turkish vest. Well, I pondered sewing one, but our machine is still acting up. So, instead I attempted (what else?) one out of tabs.

I made a prototype in black which I thought I'd better try out for comfort. I decided to make the whole thing adjustable just about anywhere I could since I couldn't measure my partner myself and she said she'd dropped a lot of weight recently. Anyway, I wore the prototype to TRF and (to my relief) it was very comfortable.

turkish_style vest made of can tabs
turkish_style vest made of can tabs

Here it is with a sleeved shirt:
turkish_style vest made of can tabs
turkish_style vest made of can tabs

Then, on to my partners vest/belt set:

turkish vest in shade

turkish vest front

turkish vest back

turkish vest side

She wanted a vest that would coordinate with some turkish outfits she already had in bright pink with green and gold accents. I originally started making some armbands for another outfit she had in copper/black, but decided I should make a matching belt, instead. I would have made both, but I ran out of time. October was a crazy month for me. As you can see in the pics, I changed the style of the back of the vest a bit. However, I think I like the original back better.

Well, I hope she likes it. She really hasn't said much about it. She said she would be posting pics of it in the swap gallery soon, but I haven't seen them, yet. Still waiting to see what I will receive as well. Hope it's cool whatever it is or I want my vest/belt back! Hehe Just kiddin' :) Actually, I'm indebted to her for asking for a vest in the first place. Otherwise, I would probably never have attempted one. That would be a shame because I really like it.


Well, my partner up and flaked on me. Can you believe it!! I spent hours on that thing!! How rude! She didn't even post pics of what she received. I'm really bummed. :( But, on a good note, the moderator has found me a swap angel. So, I should get something at least before Scarby. *crosses fingers*

*************UPDATE ****************

Finally received from my swap angel, spooky.kitty. Click here to see what I got. I also heard back from my original partner who ran into some personal problems that has caused her to dissappear for awhile.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Bellydance Costume Progress

As embarrassing as it is, here are some pics I promised to put up of the bellydance costume I'm working on getting finished. It has been raining here and while I was getting photographed I was experiencing a nice cold mist on my exposed parts. Brrrr...

I'm repurposing my empire waist bodice I wore to faire. Currently, I'm experimenting and adding all the dangly things to my belt. As you can tell in the pics, the sleeves are removable and I only have one on. I had to make the piece on my stomach wide enough to hide my beautiful appendectomy scars. (The surgeon was a butcher, but I'm still alive and kickin' so all is good.)

Anyway, there will be a round flower thing on both hips (maybe with a turquoise jewel in center) as well as many hanging strings of tabs all around similar to the front. I'm probably ditching the overskirt seen in the first few pics.

can tab bellydance in progress can tab bellydance in progress

can tab bellydance in progress can tab bellydance in progress

Monday, August 4, 2008

New Hats! And, future tutorial!

I've got 2 new hats to show off!

Just finished a topless for my Great Aunt Claudine made with yellow t-shirt scrap and multi-colored yarn.

claudine's can tab hat

The other is a sun hat made with blue and white fleece strips that was made by request for a fellow crafter on She's giving it as a gift to someone who collects hats. I tried some new techniques on this one. I figured out a way to weave muli-colored patterns (hard to see the music notes here) and a new way to attach the pieces together. Mom is modeling it til I can get some pics from the new owner.

can pull tab sun hat

can pull tab sun hat top

can pull tab sun hat

I'm currently working on a tutorial on creating tabistry and how to make a pop top hat. I may also work on a "how to" video as well. So, in the near future, anyone interested will be able to get a copy to create their own.

***** UPDATE 09/18/09 *****

Thank you to everyone who have helped make my tutorials better. I now have two up finished and now on (when in stock) here:

I opted not to use at this time. I may in the future, but for now I will just stick with Etsy.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Mom Needs a New Pair of Shoes!

Well, just like the title reads, my mom was complaining about not having comfy shoes to go with her outfit. So, I said, "Why not make some!" Out of can tabs, of course! One day later, here one is:

mom's shoe top

shoe side

mom's oufit with shoe

mom's can tab shoe right

Strange style for her outfit, I know, but they definitely fit her personality. :) She says they are comfortable, but we will have to field test that at TRF before a true judgement can be made. We need a louder bell, jewel, or charm for the toe.


As requested, here is a pattern for making a shoe like the one above. This is a simplified version. The original has a left and right side, but I altered it so it would be easier.

can tab shoe pattern
To join the two pieces, I tied the ends of the top and bottom toe point together. Then pulled a separate strips of fabric/cord between the two layers on each side of the shoe starting at the top most point. Pull the ends out of the first holes on either side of the top point. Then, start weaving into the next hole of the top layer down thru the bottom layer and then move over a hole on the bottom layer and up thru the same top hole. Then move over to the next top hole going down to the next hole in the bottom layer. Keep repeating this until you reach the last hole of the top layer. Be sure to alway go to a new hole on bottom and the same hole on top to get the curled toe.

When the toe is finished, continue around the shoe to soften the edge and make the opeing smaller. Next, with a new strip start joining the side to the bottom 'til you reach the back. I ran a strip of vertical tabs up the back to hold the two sides together. The last tab should stick up in the back where you could add a lace to tie them around your ankle.

I highly recommend lining the inside with soft fabric for extra cushion.

The illustration below shows how to create the staggered weave pattern needed to make the shoe.:
staggered can tab pattern

Friday, June 27, 2008

New Bodice

can tab bodice black and red

Inspiration struct me the other day, so I started one using the corset pattern maker at: Just wanted to see how accurate the measurements would be with the tabs. Wish I would have found this before I started the first bodice for mom. Much easier. I've also created my own can tab pattern in Adobe Illustrator where I superimposed the tabs over the image created by the online pattern maker. Still working on little tweaks like the spacing, but, now I don't need to guess on the shape. Yeah!! Here is the front so far:

can tab bodice

I've removed the AI pattern I posted here. If you would like to acquire it, please pm or email me. Sorry for the inconvenience.

I've been told the style looks like something from the Nutcracker Ballet.

As you can tell in the pic, this horizontal tabs are spaced much to far apart in AI causing it too be to wide. This is actually as good thing because of the stretchiness of the bodice. Anyway, I wanted to try adding variety by making a subtle pattern in the weave by turning the tabs over in places (as you can barely see in the above pic). Didn't show up that well, at first. But, it gave me another idea to run a contrasting cord through the upside-down tabs. More color! Look closely in the far left corner of the bodice in the first pic in this post.

I'm running into some problems with the victorian-style experiment I mentioned because I used nonstretchy shoelaces and weaved them too tight, I think. The lacings under the arms will not line up straight. Argghh!


Pic from TRF with flat cap hat
soda tab corset and hat

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Pirate/Cavalier Hat

This hat has evolved a lot since I started it. Originally we wanted a tricorn hat. I used black shoelaces with skull/crossbone print, hence the spotty-look.

Sun hat-style before I pinned up the sides:

can tab hat on post

can tab hat on post

Hat at the present moment with Dr. Pepper can flower pinned to side and ostrich feathers:

Can Tab Pirate Cavalier Hat

Here's mom modeling her hat.

mom's in her can tab cavalier hat

mom's can tab cavalier hat

My empire waist bodice

I pretty much used up most of my supply of tabs on mom's bodice, but wanted to wear something to the faire as well. So, I created a much shorter project for myself.

can tab bodice

And, the back while I was fitting it.

can tab bodice back

my can tab outfit

There is just something about dressing up to go to a ren faire that make it more fun!

Breakdown of costs:

Can Tabs = FREE
Dk Blue Velour = n/a (fabric from old jogging jacket)
Orange/Brown Braided Trim = ? ($4 for huge 20+ yard spool braided with leather)
Shoelace lacing on sides of bodice= 30 cents a pair (eBay lot)
Chemise = $1 (thrift store fabric)
Removable Over skirt and Sleeves = $1 (remnant clearance fabric)
Aqua-colored Jewel = ? ($2 for package of 10?)
Bottle cap setting for Jewel = FREE
Total = $2.30

Mom's Bodice for Faire

NEW PIC from TRF!!

Can Tab Crown Hat and Bodice

At this point, I'm experimenting with more challenging projects. I found a local short-lived suppler of tabs and WAS rolling in them for awhile. Muhahaha! So, I started mom's bodice/corset. We wanted inexpensive, not so h/a outfits for the Scarby 2008 renaissance faire here in Texas.

Can Tab Crown Hat and Bodice

can tab corset front

can tab corset back

A close up of the hat after a few changes.

Can Tab Crown Hat

Here is a pic of the last fitting showing the straps.

can tab corset in process

I still plan to add some extra paintstick boning to straighten out the front. But, overall she was very pleased and comfortable at the faire.


Here is the post about TRF:

Post for the shoes:


Breakdown of costs:

Can Tabs = FREE
Jewels with rims on Hat = $2 ($1 per pack of 6 jewels at hobby storeclearance)
Gold shoelace on Hat= 30 cents a pair (eBay lot)
Lt. Green Leather Cord Lacing = $8 ($4 a cord at hobby store)
Yarn trim on Hat and Bodice = $2.50 (on clearance)
Nylon cord braided into yarn = 50 cents (clearance)
Dk Green Fleece = $1 ($3/yd.)
Green Scarf on shoulders = ? (I've had it forever)
White sheer shirt = ? (Mom's closet)
Dk Green Overskirt = $1 (Thrift store fabric)
Lt Green Slip Dress = $10 (Marshalls clearance)
Total = $25

Can Tab Crownlace

After Jeudi's outfit and the start of my mom's corset/bodice, I offered to create a crown for an unofficial illustration contest on

The first attempt is modeled by Jeudi:

crown of can tabs

We added some soup/fruit cans to the mix, as well as some cheapy rhinestones and a couple gold shoelaces.

can tab crown/necklace

can tab necklace/crown

Being flexible, it also doubles as a wonderful necklace!

Breakdown of costs:

Can Tabs = FREE
Jewels with rims = $1 per pack of 6 jewels (clearance at hobby store)
Gold shoelaces = 30 cents a pair (eBay lot)
Clasp finding from old belt = next to FREE
Total = $1.30

Jeudi Warrior Princess

After the belt projects, I played around with weaving sheets of tabs in various patterns coming up with, my favorite, the scale look. One triangle shaped piece jokingly became a can tab string bikini top, but you're crazy if you think I'm sharing that pic! The next project made out of can tabs was a hat for my daughter. She loves pink! As any 4 yr. old girl at the time would. I happened to find some pink fuzzy soft fleece fabric strips in the clearance at Hobby Lobby. So, we made the following hat:

soda can tab hat front

soda can tab hat back

It's surprisingly stretchy, light and comfortable. Of course, she just had to have a costume to wear with it. She was, and is, into Xena of all characters. Below are pics of our progress to the current costume.

Can Tab Dress with Hat - front 1

Can Tab Dress with Hat - back

Can Tab Dress with Hat - front 2

And, here is the latest add-ons to her outfit that will hopefully be worn to TRF this year weather permitting.





We added a sword, whip, cape and a few other accessories she picked out. The whip is a whole other homemade project I will explain in a separate post.

Breakdown of cost:

Can tabs = FREE (technically, they made money cuz we recycled some of the cans)
Pink Fleece = $2 (large package of strips on clearance)
Belt for hanging weapons = $1 (thift store)
Sword = $1 (dollar store)
Green Dress = $17 (new)
Green/Black Cape = $1.50 (thrift store)
Whip = $2 ($1 each for bundle of green rope and duct tape, pencil was free)
Armbands/Jewels = $1 each arm (from clearance jewery finds)
Total = $25.50