recycle

Calling all my fibre friends!

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I am getting ready to start working seriously on my studio and on the first few pieces I will work on IN the new studio. So I was wondering, if there is interest in a community art piece?

What I was looking for:
The pieces should not be bigger than a credit card (3 inches by 5 inches. They can be smaller, but no bigger!), they have to be backed with lining. Any kind of thin lining (see mine in the picture), and can be whatever strikes you fancy and whatever technique you prefer. Knit, crochet, weave, felt, needle lace.. Anything. The pieces will have to have a blanket stitch around the edge, as you see in the picture, that way I can attach them to each other. You can make one, or eight. It all depends on how you feel and how inspired you are. Also: Please do attach a little tag to your piece with your name on it (and maybe an online  link, if you like and have one).
As to the materials used: I would like to keep them natural materials and recycled, if possible (cotton, linen, wool, blends, silk, etc). My little square there, used to be the pocket in wool pants, for example and the embroidery was made with a tiny leftover bit of sock yarn. You don’t have to make the whole thing out of recycled material, if you have a leftover scrap of fabric from a previous project, feel free to use it. I just wanted to see how creative we can get without spending a ton while keeping things out of our landfills. Make art, not trash! ;)


I would like this very first studio piece to be a community piece, because this is what my studio is all about. Growing community, working together on preserving the wonderful fibre arts, passing along what we know, celebrating each others talents and inspiring each other.

What will happen to the piece, once it is done:
Once the piece is done, it will be displayed in my studio for a while. For everybody to see it and marvel at our fibre community’s diversity and be inspired. After that, I was thinking of auctioning it off. I would like the proceeds to go to a charity. (I was thinking of picking three, or so and then hosting a vote on my blog, or on FB as to which one we give the money to.)

That reminds me: Our new FB page is up! If you feel like it, go clicklike! :)

How much time will you have to complete a little patch?

Really as long as you need. This will be a long term project. If you could get your patch done this year (2015) that would be awesome, but if you need a little longer, that’s probably fine too. I have no end date set for this, and I have no specific size I want it to be. So what ever comes in whenever that is, it will be fine. I think I will set a soft deadline for this at mid next year (I think a year and a half for a credit card sized swatch is enough time), but will re-evaluate the time frame when I see how big it is by then. :)

The pieces would have to be sent to me, if you are interested, please comment here and then email me.

Thanks for considering to participate! <3

If you are interested in participating, please email to catscradlenw (at) gmail (dot) com

Just a small gift…

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New “Lagenlook” sweater refashion

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I have had this cashmere Prada sweater for a while now. I got it, because someone else washed it too hot and it felted. It didn’t really fit anybody comfortably in the family (I did fit in it, but it was too short for my taste and a bit too figure hugging to be comfortable).

So I had it laying around. I petted it now and again, only to put it back in the sewing box. I was always worried, I would screw it up somehow and it is such a soft fabric after all. I wanted this to work out.

A few weeks ago, I finally got up and told myself to cut it already. Yes, it WAS an expensive sweater at one point, however,

  1. I did not pay anything for it and
  2. it isn’t worth a penny to anyone in the shape it is in now.

I determined that I wanted the sweater not necessarily longer, as I wanted it to be a layer piece, but it had to be wider, in order to be able to get anything underneath. So a slit must be made and material inserted. I finally settled on a pleat in the back. Since the sweater was nice material, I figured I had to get a bit of nice fabric for the pleat as well and settled on linen. So I got out my form and my scissors and some linen shorts, with a skirt flap (who wears these things… seriously?) and got to work. (I swear, I made photos for a tutorial, but they got lost somehow. I have no idea how, or why…)

All seams in this episode are hand sewn.

I took a seam ripper to the “skirt” part of the shorts/skirt, since that was the bit I wanted to use for the pleat. I cut it a bit smaller, but I kept the top waist band with the button holes, since it was a finished seam that I didn’t have to make lol. I wanted that to become the new bottom edge of the pleat. I also liked the way the button holes looked and wanted to keep them as an added touch.

I measured the sweater’s back and found the middle and figured out how high I wanted the slit to go. I like pleats to go all the way to the arm hole. However, on this sweater I came in just about an inch short of arm hole height. The arms are rather fitted, due to the felting, and I wanted to keep them that way. The sleeves are not uncomfortable to wear, but having a pleat go too far up the back does not look good.

I made a chalk line up the back, then made a seam on either side of the chalk line (just to be sure it would not unravel the sweater when I cut), the same way one would do if one wanted to steek a handknitted sweater. Yes, it was felted, but better save than sorry.

After I made the seams into the sweater, I took my scissors and cut along the chalk line up to my end point. Now all I had to do, was to put in the pleat fabric and presto! I did all the stitching on this by hand. I don’t have pictures of the sewing. I am so sorry. But basically the pleat went in this way:

Pin either side of the pleat rectangle to the cut edges of the pullover then sew up those edges. This will leave you with a hole up on top, where the end of the cut slit is. now you lay down your pleat the way you want it, give it a good heat set (iron it) and then pin it to the pullover. Now sew up the top. I have done pleats before, so I didn’t have to think about it at all, but if you haven’t (and my amazing description of things just helps to confuse you), here is a link to a tutorial. :)

I also sewed on a few buttons, just for looks, really. They don’t to anything. (you can really see the button holes, where the skirt part buttoned over the shorts as well, in this photo.)

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To make the front a bit more interesting, I used a little vintage handkerchief as a collar. I just folded it in half, with the embroidery up front in the center and pinned it to the collar, then sewed it down.

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Presto! New cute shirt.

More sewing adventures are sure to come, as I am going to try and work towards a completely hand sewn wardrobe next year, among other things.

Kintsugi and boro. What’s not to love?

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What I did last night, instead of knitting!
I have always loved the Japanese concept of kintsugi and the look of boro. So last night I took one of our rather raggedy looking towels and spiffed it up. Yes, I could buy new ones, but where is the fun in that? Besides, we had these towels for about 6 years now and they are juuuust getting good lol
I think it looks really distinguished and nice now. I shall do it to our other towels as well and get a few more years of wear out of them. (keeping things out of landfills is my hobby )
‪#‎recycle‬, ‪#‎upcycle‬ ‪#‎reuse‬

Boro

We were sewing again.

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This time we made my Christmas present together. I had such fun!

A new project bag for my  knitting/sewing/embroidery on the go. This way my projects can travel in style. All fabrics have been reclaimed from old T-shirts, curtains and even a wedding gown, that my husband found in a free pile (guess the marriage was not all that….)

What do you guys think? I LOVE the way it came out!