Tag Archives: upcycling

WIP Wednesday

IMG_2200start date: 17 September 2014
elapsed time: five hours
completeness: 90%

I finished Ithilien’s vest yesterday (as it turns out, he wanted the heart cable pattern).

I started a fabric order online for the next project on the list, but I haven’t finished the order yet because I’m waiting on a mama-to-be to tell me about her preferences.

So…in the meantime…

I’m doing a few little indulgent projects for myself.  Like making a soft echidna.

I love echidnas.  I really really do.  How could you not love them?  Sadly they aren’t very popular stuffed animals– I haven’t found a single one for sale ANYWHERE– and, in lieu of breaking several laws by acquiring a real echidna and keeping it as my pet, I am sewing a toy one for myself.  Meet Palantir, the short-beaked echidna!

IMG_2204One definite advantage of the soft toy echidna is that it’s much softer and nicer to snuggle than a real echidna would be, although I think the tiny puggles look very cuddle-able.  (And wrinkly and naked!  How great is that?)

Palantir is nearly finished now.  I have to find some shiny little eyes– beads or buttons, I can’t decide– and do a little shaping of the ears and the neck fat with some upholstery thread tacking, but that’s it.

And I’ve given him a few test cuddles, and the experience was everything I could have hoped for and more.


The pattern is my own, the leather bill is upcycled from a piece of leather Robert used in one of his Cub Scout crafts back in the day, faux furs are from Artito.  Tracey was awesome to work with and helped me match the furs I wanted to use and gave me stellar advice– check out her shop and maybe you’ll find something that inspires you to do something awesome!


WIP Wednesday

IMG_2153start date:  June 2012
elapsed time:  2 years, 2 months
completeness:  10%

I’m on a mission from god.

Actually I’m an atheist, and nobody sent me to do this, but I do like the Blues Brothers.


I’m on a mission to finish up my bin of works-in-progress.  Some of the things in this bin are just a few pattern pieces, some of them are half-sewn, some of them are waiting on a supply or a flash of inspiration I haven’t gotten yet, some of them are just waiting for me to have the time to get around to them.


Last night I had a dream about these potholders.  This is what my life has become.  It wasn’t much of a dream, I admit; it basically ran “Adding finger pockets to those potholders would be nice.”

And I am liking the results so far.




The pattern is my own, the fabrics are from the scrap bin so I don’t remember what they are (except that the mustard yellow is upcycled from a couch we used to have, and the whales are Robert Kaufman), and the batting is Insul-brite.

WIP Wednesday


start date: August 12, 2014
elapsed time: 8 days
completeness: 70%

This week I’ve been making new shoes for the smalls.  The shoes we bought them last year are not only too small, but the uppers are now completely worn through in places.  It’s pretty sad.


I’m trying something a bit different this time and using an old bicycle tire for soles.  The shape of the tire distorts the uppers a little bit when they aren’t being worn, but it works out fine once it’s on the foot.  It was NOT easy to cut this stuff, but I persevered.


The most serious advantage of this material, though, is the tread.  These soles have traction, folks.


I’m attaching the soles this time using both an adhesive (Gorilla Glue) between the insole the the outsole and some sewing (blanket stitches around the edge of the sole in doubled upholstery thread).  To prolong the life of the stitching, the uppers are whip-stitched down last, over the top of the blanket stitches.  It’s an experiment– my goal for these shoes was to make them durable enough to be outgrown before they are worn out– and so far I’m liking the results.


The pattern is from Lena’s Patterns, but the assembly techniques are my own.  The brown herringbone is a vintage Pendleton wool, the blue/green geese are from the Robert Kaufman Modern Whimsy collection, the gray felt is from JoAnn, and the dragonflies are from Cloud 9.