Friday, January 16, 2009

Another Adventure

Ok, so here it is, another "adventure". Over at A Swap for all Seasons I joined in the Winter Whimsy Mitten Swap. The requirements - MAKE or buy a pair of mittens and embellish....then mail them to your partner with a couple of goodies. Easy enough, right? Make mittens - easy peasy! I really wanted to put forth effort and not "cheat" by buying a pair of mittens and sew something on them - that was just too easy. I like a challenge!!!

Given suggestions on how to make mittens - no knitting involved here (thank goodness!) - I should be able to do this - no problem. All I had to do is go to Goodwill or the like, grab an old sweater (wool preferably) shrink, cut, sew, and biggie!

So the hunt was on....I picked up an old man sweater at the Goodwill. The only one there that day - literally! (You have to keep in mind that it has to be a large man's sweater because it will shrink - big time! I know you remember shrinking something that was your husbands that now could fit a small child - ya, your out there I know I'm not the only one!)

Ok, got the sweater - check! In between the holidays and everything, I had a chance to go to an estate sale. In a closet in one of the rooms was a beautiful woman's needlepointed sweater. For a dollar, I couldn't pass it up! It wasn't wool, nor did it shrink the way I'd like, but I thought I'd try it anyway. Great, now I have two sweaters - BINGO, my swap partner will get a bonus! Now I had to shrink the wool sweater. Let me tell you...after washing and drying that sweater 8 times - yes 8, there was enough lint in the washer AND dryer to make another sweater! (Now, if I only knew how to spin the wool back into thread - that would be another bonus!)

Made my pattern, by hand (pun intended! LOL!!)....I have a big hand so I know it will fit my partner. The layout and cutting began. I cut the first pair of mittens from the sleeve of the woman's sweater to capture the great design. Then, I cut the other sweater.

Next came sewing. Pulled the ol' sewing machine out that had collected dust-lots of dust. Well I tried to sew the first pair of mittens. Unfortunately, the knit of that sweater was too loose and my machine wasn't cooperating! I made it, but it wasn't pretty. I sewed some buttons on for an asthetic feel. I tried these puppies on and like I mentioned to my partner in the note I wrapped with these mittens....."you can stick them on your hands to go and get the mail, or decorate the snowwoman in the yard" - trust me they were pretty funny looking (check out the "thumb nub"!)- not a real true mitten! (and by this time, I had to re-think the "cheating" option)...

see what I mean??

Now for pair #2. I had practice, so these should be a whiz! The fabric was easier to work with and my sewing machine was getting warmed up! On a roll.....whahoo! These guys were done lickey split! So I put them on and just as I figured, one had a hole and my finger poked through! UGH!!! I can't believe it!!! Well, I resewed it and it was back to business.

I am glad I picked up this color of a sweater because it will go with any type of coat. I cut these from the bottom part of the sweater so that the ribbing could serve as the cuff of the mittens. Got them sewed on the machine, and added some simple buttons. I didn't want them to be too goaudy looking. Here they are... So, what do you think? I know I shouldn't give up my day job (LOL!!), but pair #2 turned out ok.

This was a true adventure and another New Year goal accomplished. Stay tuned for more cool stuff.....

Until tomorrow friends....

Is anyone out there???



Scrap for Joy said...

In this weather, Susie will need to wear both pairs at the same time! Good for you for taking all the steps to your creations-I'm sure I would've purchased a pair and gone from there! I'm anxious to see what the Spring swap will be.

Linda said...

Susie will go nutty over this color- truly one of her favorites! They look awesome! Handmade always means more than anything you can buy in a store! Linda

Kudzu said...

Hmm.....this sounds like fun! I've hunted for wool sweaters here at the thrift stores and haven't found a single one yet! But then, there just isn't a need for many cold weather clothes here, unless it's a fluke (uhhh, like right now!) LOLL...But I like the idea you had!The did come out cute anyway :D Maybe I'll just buy a regular old sweater and play with it!