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Sewing and Up-cycling- 'At Home Art 15'

I have really been inspired to sew lately and I wanted to share with you some sewing projects to get you started on your very own sewing adventure. Since it is spring I have selected up-cycling projects as I find whenever I take out my spring and summer clothes I often notice they are not in as good of a condition as I thought they were when I put them away last fall. Sometimes it's just a matter of not liking the style anymore or finding them too ratty to wear or maybe they just don't fit quite right anymore. This is a great time to be creative with your wardrobe, up-cycle what you can and re-purpose the rest. I remember as a young person learning about how material was used ‘back in the day’ and having this lesson really resonate with me. To summarize, I was told that ‘when a dress became old and tattered it was turned into an apron, and when the apron became tattered it was turned into rags, and when the rags became worn they were used to stuff mattresses.’ I googled this and happened upon a wonderful little treasure from 1883. This concept was written about in the Cultivator and Country Gentleman volume 48 under the heading Utilizing Old Garments. I have included a link to this digitized book and have also included a segment from page 929 which I typed out as the original text is quite difficult to read. The passage I have written out can be viewed at the bottom of this post.

Now I may not be that frugal but I do hate to see waste especially in the fashion industry. So what I have for you today are some great tutorials on how to up-cycle fabric in some fun and creative projects. The first link I have selected shows you how to make a cute headband out of old t-shirt material. The second link turns wool tights into finger-less gloves and the third link shows how to create a no-sew tote bag from a t-shirt. These three projects are very simple even for young children and they are a great way to get into up-cycling clothes. The next link is to a ‘nature pouch’ that uses a blanket stitch. This involves beginner hand-sewing and it is a wonderful introduction project. You can make this pouch with any material you have lying around the house including old clothes that you're not using anymore. The 6th link is an introduction to visible mending. Visible mending is a great way to personalize your clothes while increasing their longevity. This is a great project for those clothes that you just love and wear all the time but are starting to show their age. If visible mending interests you I encourage you to look into it more as there are many different versions and just as many useful tutorials to guide you along. The next two links show different variations for up-cycling pants the first one turns a pair of pants into classic jean shorts and the next one makes a nice pair of joggers. This one requires a sewing machine and a little bit more experience however if you are interested in this pattern I would encourage you to try it even if you are a beginner. I am so excited to be sharing these with you and I hope you find a project or pattern that inspires you to bring sewing into your life!

Please feel free to like and share. If you do up-cycle some clothing we would love to see it! Take a picture and tag us #temiskamingartgallery.

That's it for now. Have a great day folks. Toon in tomorrow for another great art/craft idea.

Sincerely; Your friendly neighbourhood art gallery.

Utilizing Old Garments

As soon as a garment is too badly worn to be a further use in its present form it should be thoroughly cleaned in the wash tub, ripped up, and the most made of the pieces. Old dress-skirts make aprons that last half as long as new material. Cut off The frayed hem at the bottom, and put in another; hem the top also, and in this run a strip of coloured tape or a black linen shoe line, and the apron will fit the form without goring. Aprons and wastes are fit for nothing but carpet rag, and should be torn up at once. Stockings and knitted undergarments cut over nicely for the little folks, or make good dishcloths... The raveled threads of scarves, hoods and wool stockings can be knitted into rugs. The better pieces of badly worn but nice dresses last a long time if made into quilts. The ends of worn wool shawls can, with a little cotton batting, be knotted and will make a warm blanket for the crib or a little bed. Two or three old quilts can be thoroughly cleaned and covered and will make a comfortable mattress. The good parts of a heavy pantaloons will make nice leggings for the boys. Overalls make good mops, and the buttons, bands and pockets should be cut off ready for this. The good part of coloured shirts make worm linings for little dresses, quite badly worn flannels can be made over for children. The larger thin pieces should not be cut up for carpet regs, for a roll of old flannel should ever be on hand in case of illness. Soft white goods and worn out sheets should be entirely used up for carpet Rags, for one never knows when illness or accidents may require cloth and bandages.


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