Bag made from an old wool sweater

Hey Everyone, welcome back to Story Time Monday.

Last year I went to a retreat organised by The Purple Sock. The Purple Sock is a shop in Coldwater specializing in fibre for knitting, weaving, spinning and hooking plus they also have all kinds of tea and other goodies.

Twenty of us came together for a couple days of fun and workshops at Geneva Park a YMCA facility just outside of Orillia. Lynn who owns The Purple Sock did a great job of organising the retreat and keeping us all busy and learning something new.

I learned how to spin on a drop spindle and my yarn came out a bit chunky so I called it designer yarn. I also tried my hand at rug hooking which I quite enjoyed and if I wasn’t a quilter I could certainly become a hooker.

The last morning we were each given a wool sweater which had been felted. Lynn had washed them all in hot water and dried them in a hot dryer so the fibres would all felt together. This way when we cut it up it didn’t fall apart.

Where did Lynn get all these sweaters?  Value Village and Goodwill shops, perfect places to pick up wool sweaters at bargain prices to recycle into something new.

I had brought my sewing machine with me and set to work cutting up the sweater into squares to sew them back together again into a bag. With the addition of some strips from a blanket the bag was made.

It sat all year until last week when I figured I should maybe add a few more finishing touches and the handles so I could take it to this year’s retreat as a show & tell item.

I was going to add some felted pieces but then figured some couching would really stand out on the bag. I decided on two colours and set to work. I ended up having to use my walking foot as the felted sweater was quite think and my regular foot wouldn’t feed the fabric through.

The handles were very plain so I couched a few pieces of yarn to them. I attached them to the bag with buttons and probably should have made button holes as they would then be sturdier and stronger. I have a feeling I will be doing this in the end but I didn’t have time to figure out how to create button holes even though I know it is very easy and my machine does all the work. I just have to program it in. I haven’t made a button hole since grade 9 Home Ec class and wasn’t about to start last week. Maybe next week.

I think I will add some more embellishment to the outside as it is still looking a bit drab to me but this will have to do for now.

What fun this little project has been and what a great way to recycle or upcycle as my friend Leanne would say from Noble Upcycling. She is the queen of recycling and upcycling wool sweaters – don’t forget to stop and see her at the Barrie Christmas Craft Show November 1 – 2 at the Barrie Molson Centre.

Here I am at the retreat again having a great time as you read this post. Doing some more hooking and learning how to Nuno Felt which is a wet felting as opposed to the dry felting I have been doing lately with the felting machine.

Tomorrow is the last morning – wonder what the surprise workshop will be.

Happy Quilting!

Jen Transparent Signature