Upcycling, Boleros, and Quilts!

Hello Stitchers!

A late post today; it was just one of those days that got away from me (plus, I worked a four hour shift at the studio this afternoon and had to leave my apartment at 11:30.  Ugh.).  But, I have some fun things to share, including news (towards the bottom of the post)!

First off, let’s start with the bolero.  Now, I decided to get a little crafty with this pattern after my revelation about not wanting to make clothes (to be clear on that subject, by the way, I’m not dropping the clothing idea completely, but I’m not going to start out there since I need to get that pattern making nonsense under my belt a little more solidly first).  Instead of trying the pattern on my nice new batiks (i.e., entirely from scratch and with brand new fabric to boot), I decided to use the pattern I made to modify a shirt I had lying around.  Through the wonders of upcyling (who came up with this term, by the way??), I have brought you an adorable bolero-like shirt (I couldn’t bring myself to cut the front of the shirt open to make it an official “bolero”)!  Here it is:

(I’m wearing it over a tank-top; that orange bit is not part of the finished piece)

While this sort of just looks like I creatively hemmed a shirt, a lot of work actually went in to restructuring it, including ripping every single seam on the shirt.  Have I mentioned before how much I hate ripping seams?

This is a fairly accurate representation of the color of this shirt; it’s a beautiful deep purple (I guess we’d call it eggplant?  Dunno…) and was one of my favorite shirts to steal from my mom.  ^.^;  She gave it to me as scrap fabric because its’ sort of been through the ringer that is her school (she teaches young children and inevitably all of her clothes end up with paint or glue on them), and I’m glad that I was able to get so much out of it, both as a finished shirt and the scrap that came off it.

Here are a few more pictures of me modeling this baby in my bathroom (once again, I apologize for the crap lighting – my sister saw these pictures today and said “It looks like you need someone to model for you!” Hopefully she and I will get together soon to rectify this situation):

What drives me positively wild is that you can’t see the awesomeness that are the shoulders of the shirt.  Originally, the hem of the shirt was a four-inch wide swath of heavily embroidered, quilty-feeling fabric.  I took it and turned it into “epaulettes” for the bolero – the only patchy thing about this piece, but I love it.  When my sister does the modeling, I’ll have more wiggle room to get some nice shots of the shoulders.  ^_^ (also, just a note, those white spots are not paint or glue, or even on the fabric a all.  That’s me desperately needing to clean the bathroom mirror of toothpaste. ^.^)

Thoughts on this design:

  • I’m in love with it, I’m not going to lie.
  • Can’t decide if I want to keep this as an upcycling pattern, or develop it into a pattern that can live on its own.  Probably the latter, in time.

And now, a preview of Monday’s blog post!

Earlier this week I posed a question to my Kickstarter backers about the idea of switching over from patchwork clothing to straight up patchwork quilts.  NEWS!  Enough people have messaged me privately and/or commented that I’ve decided this is what I will be doing with my time, especially because (a) since making this decision I’ve wanted to do nothing but sew, and (b) I have actually spent more time sewing, staying on task, and getting stuff done.  Very exciting!

That being said, here is a quick sneak peak of a piece I’m working on for one of my backers:

On Monday I’ll post the finished product and go through the process with you guys.  Hooray!  (it’s super pretty, I can’t wait to share with everyone!)

Alright.  It’s now 9PM and I’m positively beat.  I’m going to go eat dinner, get into some comfy PJs, and veg out for the rest of the evening.  Hope that everyone has a beautiful weekend!

(psst – thoughts on the bolero?  comment!)

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About Which Stitchery

For almost as long as I can remember, I have been in love with fabric and all of the amazing things you can do with it. I've made costumes, hats, and dabbled in corsetry. I made quilts and I knit and I crochet and I wonder what sort of crazy things I can do with pretty much every scrap of fabric I come across. Next up: learning how to batik! Welcome to this happy little blog, which will chronicle my projects as I work on various new ways to make the world around me a little more colorful!
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One Response to Upcycling, Boleros, and Quilts!

  1. Pingback: Yes, Yes, YES! | Which Stitchery

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