Friday, March 26, 2010

WIP Reconstructed Skirt #2 Patchwork Flannel

Though I'm the model in the pics in this post, I'm actually making this one for my mom. I was goofing around with all the new clothing pieces and accessories I've been making.

This skirt started as a flannel patchwork skirt. It was odd that it was assembled in panels (gores?) instead of the usual tiers. I ripped the seams vertically between each panel up to just about the waistband. Below is a pic after I had ripped the seams. The skirt just wasn't very full and just hung kinda blah on us. To add extra fabric to this skirt, I needed to make the waistband stronger to hold the extra weight. The stretch in the band was deteriorating, as is common with thrift store finds. So, I had to add a drawstring, anyway.

I had originally planned to add some black fabric between the panels, but was inspired to make it brighter with the gold when I was digging through my fabric stash and happened upon the gold you see. It was an old roundish tablecloth, by the way. :)

The tablecloth was perfect! I had JUST enough left over to make a matching triangular hip scarf as you will see in some of the pics.

I mention it's a work in progress (WIP) because I would still like to add a black ruffle to the bottom for extra length. The hip scarf will also have black/burgundy trim and some embellishments. But, I'm wondering if the hip scarf will be too much gold. Maybe I should incorporate it into a choli top or something instead.

This is the second of many reconstructed skirts to come. The first was my black/tan cotton skirt that I posted in January. I have another patchwork flannel that mom is working into her pirate garb for faire. Hopefully, we'll have something to show on that one before mid April.

***** UPDATE *****

Mom finally wore her finished skirt to the faire. The black ruffle with red binding really helped to give it that final touch it needed. As we were heading in we ran into a lady wearing a strikingly similar patchwork skirt. :)

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

All for the Want of a Horseshoe Nail

"For want of a nail, the shoe was lost;
For want of the shoe, the horse was lost;
For want of the horse, the rider was lost;
For want of the rider, the battle was lost;
For want of the battle, the kingdom was lost;
And all for the want of a horseshoe nail."

- Author unknown

I found this poem while looking up info on nails. It seems to sum up a lot of my crafting failures. :) Always in need of one part that you never can find when you need it, right?

I've hung on to many a jewelry tidbit over the years. And, someday I intend to make something out of each and every piece of it. Today, I made some progress. Have you ever seen the horseshoe nail jewelry that was just another short lived fad of the 70's? Many years ago, I acquired various horseshoe nails from a broken necklace (or bracelet). Well, I finally got inspired to do something with them when I came across a lovely pendant made of the same nails for less than $1 at our local flea market the other day. It was attached to a cheap boring chain that was not doing the beauty of the pendant any justice. So, I reconstructed all the pieces into this necklace/earring set:

Guess I'll never "want for a horseshoe nail" wearing this necklace and earring set! :)

I must mention that I also took inspiration from a site with some wonderful pieces at:

I stripped the nails of most the existing rings and beads and reshaped a few. Then, wrapped some groups together with wire similar to the existing pendant hanging down in the center. (The wire will eventually tarnish to look more like the pendant. I removed and replaced the draped portion that was originally attached from the pendant that didn't hang right to me. The bead, wire and clasp were reused from another necklace I picked up at a thrift store. I just love the look the nails give. To me, it is very tribal-looking and earthy. If I find anymore nails in my bargain hunting, I will probably be adding to the necklace to make it even more complex.

For those of you who are interested, I was not aware that horseshoes and their nail counterparts have been commonly used since 1000 A.D. Nails were even used on horseshoes well before 600 B.C.! The biggest change in the history of horseshoes was probably in the 1800's when mass production killed the 3000 year old tradition of making each nail by hand. Nowadays, the nails themselves seem only to vary slightly in size and shape for different riding surfaces (explaining the larger size square nail hanging at the bottom center of my necklace). You'll find more info on Horseshoe Nails by searching the internet.

Happy re-crafting!