Category Archives: Upcycling

Be my Valentine

Another Year, Another Valentine

It was that time of year again. The eve of Saint Valentines day. Time to shut the door of my workroom   and rummage through the bits and bobs. Especially the red bits and bobs.

I’m usually drawn to hearts and this year was no exception. I love using buttons  and the button box (who am I kidding, I do mean button boxes, jars, the odd drawer, oh – and an old leather collar box) is often the first place I turn to.

This year I started by making a stuffed white cotton heart then, from the above mentioned collection I chose a whole variety of white buttons. The only thing they had in common was that they all had four holes so that I could make the  KISSES.        Then at some point I decided it needed one red button. I attached it to the card with yet another button.

There was an unexpected design fault this year! The card was just a little bit unbalanced. It collapsed on to its front no matter how I tried to stand it up. No time to make an improved version though, as usual it was a last-minute make.

Here are a couple of  previous years’ makes.

Upcycling

Have you ever completely ruined a perfectly good woollen jumper? I’ve done it once or twice! When Jeff first retired and took over the laundry he did. I remember one of my jumpers and one of his. I wish I’d kept them.IMG_0043Here’s my latest shrinker. This time it was deliberate! You wouldn’t believe how hard it is to really shrink something when you’re trying. Easy-peasy when you are doing the laundry in a hurry and in goes your woolly  then you take it out and aargh, dolly sized!

Reading about felting I found that the garment should be at least 80% wool. When I decided this cardie was past it’s best I checked it out and it was 70% wool.  Mmm? I gave it a go anyway and it actually felted up really well with a hot wash in the machine. Apparently you can improve the felting by taking it out and putting it in cold water and then back into a hot wash. The temperature changes enhance the process.

I cut it up like this

And sewed it together like this

I found the felt really easy to manipulate when I was sewing the strip to the circle, being used to working with cotton which is quite unforgiving.  To get the rib and collar to the right shape I pinned it first and cut it when it was in place to get the tapering right and to place the buttonholes. I thought the fabric was quite thick but the lovely Pfaff managed perfectly.

I turned the brim out and pressed it into shape then sewed the original buttons on with a little bit of contrast. And there was my new hat.

I was meant to be quilting my juicy jelly quilt this afternoon, this was  a bit of a spur of the moment whim. It was great fun.  Now am I going to wear it or use it for storage?