Progress on Vintage Tablecloth Turned Wrap Dress

Repurposing, Sewing

I used the selvedge and hem of the existing tablecloth to my advantage for this dress. No need to hem it when the edges are already finished!

In the above images, the main pieces of the dress are put together but the details still need to be done. The arms, the neckline, and the ties all remain incomplete. Still, you can get an idea of how it will look!

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Finishing the neckline edge

I’m so excited for this wrap dress.

Interesting Moss Growth…1 year later

Nature Walks

This picture was taken during the heart of the most recent 2019/2020 winter in the same place as the Moss Post I made a while back. It’s so cool how everyone in this area leaves the moss formation alone and lets it grow in this way. I love looking at it; the moss looks like tiny islands in the sand, or like grassy hills.

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It was much sunnier when I took the more recent pictures!

Last Year (overcast weather):

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Drafting a Wrap Dress on a Dress Form

Sewing

I have a couple pieces of fabric that I’d like to make into spring dresses now that the weather is pleasant and I have the time to make something. The first is a hand-me-down tablecloth in a beautiful faded kelly green with some kind of blossom design on it. The fabric is rather thick and the pattern is large, so I need to keep this in mind with my design. An ideal dress for this tablecloth is one that does not require too many tucks or seams so that I can enjoy the lovely huge blossoms.

Here was my first attempt at making a bodice. I went with a more simple version with a single dart from the bust to the arm, but I am still proud of how this version looks. It just didn’t quite work with the fabric I have available. I’m saving it just in case I have a use for it in the future.

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Here is the skirt of the wrap: a simple A-line. If I had to go back and redo it, I would add more width to the hip, however, I just didn’t have the fabric.

This work-in-progress shows the bodice design that I went with. Most of the fabric in the bodice is untouched to show off the beauty of the material I’m working with. The fabric is, of course, turned inside-out. I’ll show off the tablecloth-turned-dress soon!

This project is a part of my Fabric Stash Use-Up 2020 Project.

Dead Elastic to Drawstring Skirt

Sewing

This skirt is ancient. Already a hand-me-down when I got it, the elastic was dying. As it gave up a little bit more each wash, I’d gradually add another dart to the waistband to keep the skirt up. Eventually, the elastic bit the dust completely and the skirt was relegated to the “repair” pile for years…

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Until now! The repair pile made up a part of the fabric box for my Fabric Use-Up 2020 project, so this skirt gets another chance at being in my wardrobe again!

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First, I took out all of the darts. There were so many.

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Then, I found a saved scrap of drawstring. It came from some other skirt or sweatpants. I never throw away a useful component from worn-out clothes. I carefully made a slit the size of the drawstring in the waistband of the skirt.

I attached the end of the drawstring tape to a large safety pin, then threaded the drawstring through.

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Now I have a skirt again!

Reviving an Old Leather Wallet

Cooking and Household

A loved one inherited this leather wallet. They like it, and, since I have the supplies, I offered to clean and condition it so that it can stay nice for longer. This process took a few days to complete.

All of my cleaning and polishing rags are repurposed, threadbare cloths that came from other things: towels, shirts, flannels pants (excellent texture for polishing!). I try to avoid using paper towels whenever I can be reusing old things. Leather conditioning rags don’t go in the wash, but general household cleaning rags can be reused and washed quite a few times before they go in the trash. This practice reduces household waste because I’m not buying as many paper towels and my completely worn-out clothes have another use.

First, I wiped off the dust that had accumulated in storage. Then, I used saddle soap and a soft cloth to really clean the leather, as it was old and well-worn. I followed the directions on the tin, then I let the wallet sit quietly for an evening, then buffed it in the morning. The small gap in the ID window was protected with an expired membership card to avoid marring the lining.

After that, I dug out my old mink oil and boot sealant. I generously applied the mink oil, taking care to work the mink oil into the seams and creases of the wallet. The leather soaked up a surprising amount of oil. I left a thin layer on it overnight, just enough to make it tacky to the touch. Almost all of it was soaked up by the next day, leaving very little for me to buff off when I next took up the project.

Next, I used my boot sealant- there was just enough left to complete this project. The sealant is a brand that uses lanolin, beeswax, and coconut oil in a thick blend to protect leather shoes from bad weather. This wallet will definitely have to earn its keep, so I think that a protective application of sealant will help it stay nice for even longer. I applied the sealant, carefully working it into the seams but not applying it too thickly, then gave the wallet a final buffing the next day.

Originally, the wallet was dull and had a dry feeling to it. After I finished working on it, the leather is pleasantly soft and has a little bit of a shine to it!

You won’t have to go out and buy more things if you take care of the things that you already have!

Brown Cotton Apron

Sewing

Where are all those brown scraps for embroidery coming from?

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This is an apron I made as a gift for a loved one. They do a lot of messy hands-on projects and needed something to protect their clothing. I cut out a simple shape for an apron, then made bias trim from more of the same fabric.

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This is a simple shape with rounded edges. While it may look like the bottom (on the right) end of the apron tapers down, the sides are parallel. This is an apron design that would be easy for you, the reader, to replicate at home with any fabric you choose. The wide part goes from mid-shin to the waist, then curves in to the breadth of your shoulders minus a few inches.

I stitched the bias trim around the entire perimeter of the apron shape, then added more trim as ties for the neck and waist.

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The person I am making this apron for is broader-shouldered than me (see the dress form photos), and has a very utilitarian mindset. A sturdy brown cotton apron suits them and the sort of projects they make perfectly because there won’t be any worry or fuss if the apron gets soiled. I hope they get a lot of use out of it!

Yes, this is a part of my 2020 Fabric Stash Use-Up Project. I did not need to buy anything to make this apron! It’s a great feeling to find uses for the resources that I already have.

Thyme Grown from Cuttings

Gardening

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After making a recipe that called for fresh thyme, I had a small amount left over. The grocery store-bought sprigs weren’t going to stay good for long, so I divided them in half and put one half in a glass of water, and the other half dipped in rooting hormone and then into damp soil in a bright area. While the couple of sprigs in water didn’t make it, the thyme in soil has grown roots and is showing new growth. If it can stay strong until the frosts end, then I will have a perpetual source of thyme from now on. No need to get more from the grocery store!