Saturday, August 7, 2010

Sew what?!?!...

We have all heard about the reduce, reuse and recycle program but what about re-working old cloth items into great sewing crafts?

One of the most extreme ideas I had ever heard of and loved is a friends sister who had her wedding dress bodice with all its embroidery and bead work, and made into a big pillow for the bed. Admittedly at first I was a little taken aback but the more I thought about it the more it made sense. She was never going to wear the dress again and it would just be taking up valuable space in her closet, by making a beautiful pillow she will have a reminder everyday of her special day. This doesn't have to apply to just wedding dresses, think about it, that bride's maid dress you actually liked, (or one you didn't) you're prom dress, your child's confirmation gown, the list is only limited by your imagination. I recently came across an old velvet gown my mother had worn years ago, I had helped her pick out the dress and I remember it was one of the special times we shared together, and while I can't sew I have a friend who can, so on the promise of a good lunch and a bottle of wine she has agreed to make pillows of the dress and my wedding gown. (although I think she is going to ask me about 20 times and request a waiver to cut up the wedding dress.) And while we are on the subject of wedding dresses, what about the veil? Well here is a wonderful idea to make sachet's for your drawers, you could even make extra to give to your bride's maids if you had a long enough veil.

How about the flip side of the coin? I found a really cute idea for making a child's dress out of a pillow case. I know this sounds kinda "Sound of Music"ish but the finished product is very cute and with how fast children outgrow and wear out their clothes this is one of the best money saving things I have seen.

If you are a quilter then this may be up your alley, I saw a quilt not too long ago that was made with pieces old ties, the lady's father had passed away and since she was never going to have a use for them, but wanted a way to remember him she made a beautiful patchwork quilt from them. There are a couple of books available at Amazon for inspiration, Daddy's Ties, Necktie Sampler Blocks and Ties Ties Ties: Traditional Quilts from Neckties. Again, that is just the tip of the iceberg, what about those old worn out jeans? They make a great quilt for a kids room where bed jumping is an adventure sport. Also, consider a wall quilt made from old tee shirts and tank tops with the touristy information showing, its a great way to remember the trip to Orlando with the kids or your Honeymoon to Waikiki.

Here is one for the no sew folks (like me). My mother was a table cloth kind of lady, any time we had company she used a table cloth and being born in the 30s and going through WWII she grew up with the "don't throw that away" mind set so she had quite a few old table cloths with coffee spilled on them that wouldn't come clean. Instead of packing them up and either waiting for the next new stain remover to come out or tossing them all together I am going to try to natural dye them in a coffee bath. It's a little time consuming but really easy to do, all you need is the coffee and a big plastic bucket. (Don't use your bathtub or you may get serious ring around the tub.)

Hope this gives you some inspiration for the things in your closet that may be beyond donating to a worthy charity. Let me know some of your creative ideas.

I hope you are all having a wonderful start to the weekend.


1 comment:

  1. Great ideas! I love the girls dresses made into a hanging bag to hang clothes pins for outside laundry. I don't sew, I picked one up at a thrift store. When we had a hanging line, it looked nice hanging from it and I had a place to keep them.

    Great idea about the dresses, the good and the ugly. I do think that its hard to toss out a dress you wore for a wedding, now you can have it a a fun reminder!


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