Monday, March 8, 2010


I'm still sewing for folks, though things have been a bit slow lately. It's amazing how many zippers I've replaced or repaired in the last couple months. I'm learning a lot about zippers!

Every now and then I come across the blog of some really creative person who does amazing crafts or amazing things with clothing. Indigorchid is one of these. I've read about some pretty cool projects in her blog. For one project, she took a regular pull-over sweater and turned it into a buttoned sweater. That has stuck in my mind for some time. I had never thought of altering clothing in that way!

Just my luck that I've had a couple folks ask recently if I could do that very thing. I've never done it, but I'll give it a try!

A friend brought me this coat she picked up at an antique store in Seattle. It's a pull over and has a laced-up v-neck top. (I forgot to take a picture with the lace in before I drew a line down the center of the coat!)

I spent quite a bit of time thinking about how I was going to turn this into a zippered coat. It's made out of wool which really doesn't fray much so at one point I considered just cutting it in half and running a zigzag stitch down both sides more for looks. But there was that decorative ribbon that would fray. I think I finally solved it during Meeting (I'm embarrassed to say I sometimes spend a fair amount of time thinking about and solving sewing problems during Meeting!)

Anyway, I bound the edge with a thin piece of dark black cotton. The fabric wraps around the zipper too which makes it more finished on the inside.

I'm pretty happy with how it turned out.

There is still the v-neck to deal with though. If my friend wants to close that up it may be a matter of using some buttons or something. We'll figure it out.

Sewing on the quilt had a bit of a delay. I pretty much finished the top, but then realized I was short one row for what we had planned. Sometimes my math skills are so bad it's a wonder I made it through school! Actually, I wasn't short the entire row - just 6 squares, and partial squares at that.
The delay really came when we talked about the quilt border again. I kind of wanted to do something really simple - like a solid border, one or two colors. Jeremy wanted to do something complicated with different sized triangles (I can't do that math!). Since I'd run out of colors and we couldn't mock this up easily, we took what we had back to the quilt shop, grabbed the bolts of fabric we needed and started brainstorming. One of the women there pulled out a book and showed us what she'd done to finish her kaleidoscope quilt. Problem solved! Except now I needed to make another 50 squares! And the shop had to order another bolt of white fabric because the first bolt was gone. So now I'm waiting on that white fabric...


Anna Dunford said...

very impressive Aimee - I'm still struggling with zips on even the most basic of things. I knew I should've listened in school sewing classes all those years ago! I've got books with tips in them but I'm one of those people who has to see something 'for real' to get my head around it.

Aimee said...

I think one thing that helped me was taking zippers out of clothing. It turns out I'm pretty good at figuring out how something was put together by taking it apart - reverse engineering I guess. I also spend a lot of time mocking things up (if I put this here, folded this there, etc). And of course practice helps. =)

Anonymous said...

That was a clever move, to add a zipper!

Cutting sweaters down the middle is something I actually got from a former classmate; she cut a turtleneck in that way, which made a pretty cool drapey collar out of the turtleneck portion.

Nice job!