Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Denim Up Cycling and Pillows

I have had a very busy first couple of weeks to the new year. I have finished four projects so far. Two of them, the easy ones I have here, the others I will write about later.

I have a couple pairs of old jeans hanging around the house that I have been saving since I thought I might want to do something with them. They are too worn to donate to a second hand store and I really don't want to fill the local land fill with perfectly good fabric.

One pair of jeans was already cut up to make two purses last year when I was teaching a child to sew. The purse project left most of the top area of one pair of jeans. Rather than throw out what was left, I put it away in my stash until I figured out what I could do with it.

Not cut into were 2 good back pockets and most of the waist band area. I hate having cut up remains in my stash so I started searching for ideas. Due to the internet it is actually pretty easy to accumulate a number of ideas. Most of them involved making purses, but a couple were rather creative.

The other day in town I saw a woman wearing a pair of earrings out of denim.  The earrings were a denim wrapped hoop. Funny what you look at when going up on an escalator. 

Given the idea of earrings as a way to use up some of this left over denim I began to search for ideas, and find them I did, most of them on store sales sites.

Taking all of these ideas in. I sat down and designed a pair for myself. These are so easy to make, if you can sewing you can make these.

May I present my new pair of earrings:

These were really easy to make. All you need is an old pair of jeans, blue thread and earring  wires. For the blue thread I used Gütermann's jeans thread, col 5397. It is a 70% poly / 30% cotton mix  that is a sort of blue twist. It blends in to the denim fabric like a  dream.

I am making a second pair, it is getting some embellishments so I will write about them later.

The Second project are some pillows. Last year I bought some pillow forms on sale in Germany and stateside at JoAnns I found some fleece in the "take an extra 50% off" bin. 

I read a blog about throwing out 10 items per day to de-clutter your life and I have been trying to follow it to de-clutter my sewing area. Yesterday, after finding my 10 things to throw out for the day (no fabric or lace was harmed during this process), I decided to de-clutter a shelf by making 5 pillows. Making these pillows cleared a shelf of fabric and pillow forms.

Now I can shelve some things that needed to get off of my sewing table. Making these pillows also allowed me to throw out those small pieces left over. Overall it was a fast and easy sewing experience. Today I delivered the pillows to the Student lounge. Last time I made pillows, I made 3 of them, they disappeared. This time I put a Property of Student Lounge label on all of them. I expect they will, over time, disappear from the lounge. My hope is that these 5 will stay a while so they can be enjoyed.

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