Tuesday, February 15, 2011


When I first got my sewing machine last year for my birthday I really wanted to sew but to be honest I didn't really know where to start. I'd had a crafty weekend with Arianwen a couple of years before & made a Simple Tote from Simple Sewing by Lotta Jansdotter and also a very basic baby quilt (which still isn't finished) and another friend gave me a couple of lessons but that was the extent of my experience. I started collecting pretty fabric but it's expensive and when you don't know what you're doing quite daunting to cut into.

So I was fortunate to discover that a local charity for Creative Play for children & young people has 'upcycled ' fabric available for a small cost. My 15 year old daughter is studying Art at school and we went to kit her out with supplies and materials and I came back with a bag of fabrics. Most are from sample books of upholstery fabrics and if not reused in this way would probably go to landfill. This gave me the freedom to play with my sewing machine and enabled me to learn a lot. The Door stops in my last post were made with upholstery fabric that I got there and I'll be giving them the yellow one plus some other things I've made soon for display purposes to inspire others.

The Upcycling of fabric really appeals to me. Resources for it's manufacture, dyes etc have already been used so my crafting has minimal impact on the environment and it also saves money which is always important. With this in mind I've also been scouring charity shops as I want to make a quilt for our Super King bed and have found duvet covers to be a wonderful source of material:

green fabric door stop
100% Cotton Double Duvet cover originally from Ikea cost £5

duvet cover
100% Cotton King sized Duvet cover with 2 pillow cases originally from M&S cost £5

duvet cover
100% Cotton Double Duvet cover with 2 pillow cases cost £3

It's bizarre that every cotton duvet cover I've found so far is pink and green as these are the colours I want to use in my quilt. I've found polycotton covers in other colours but I only want 100% cotton fabrics.

I also found this skirt a few years ago before I started sewing but I'm sure you can understand why I bought it:

Lady bird skirt
Lady bird skirt from Get Cutie

Lastly I'm going to leave you with a teaser of one of the items I've made to donate to the charity mentioned above:

sewing project
will be revealed soon


Daisy said...

Someone from my knitting group has been finding amazing fabric in charity shops too!

Arianwen said...

love the ladybird fabric!!Look forward to seeing what you come up with!

YarnSnob said...

Fabric is so expensive, agree. Upcycling fabric is great idea. Im seriously thinking of using some old curtains to make a bag!
Having just taken up sewing myself, I've just had delivery of an overlocker/serger....scarey!
Love love love your door stops.