Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Inspired by Boro

"Boro" is perpetual mending and patching that can extend the life of a garment indefinitely.  The technique originated in rural Japan. "Sashiko" is a form of Japanese folk embroidery that uses a basic running stitch to create a patterned background.

Collar and collar stand

Inspired by examples of boro and sashiko online, I've started a very long term boro/sashiko inspired project. Only "inspired by" because true boro was born of necessity, to extend the life of expensive cotton textiles and sashiko has rules I don't intend to follow strictly and a uniformity I am not yet able to achieve. This is just for fun and to create a comfortable, functional, and one of a kind garment for myself. 

My husband had a denim shirt hanging in his closet that was worn beyond the point of being wearable for anything other than painting and messy household chores. In fact, it has a few paint and spackle stains that I'll eventually cover with patches!

Boro shirt beginning.

I started by removing the sleeves since they were far too long for me anyway. I then used the fabric salvaged from the sleeves to fashion large, functional pockets along the lower edge of the shirt. The narrower pocket, close to the hip, is just the right size to hold my cellphone. Another just like it on the other side of the shirt will be handy for my reading glasses.

Working around the snaps of the Boro vest.

I then started in replacing the very worn areas of the collar stand and front button band with material repurposed from an old dish towel. With the addition of boro embroidery to hold the layers together and add an element of decoration, I quite like the way it looks. 

Of course covering the button bands with material also covered up the snaps, which I wanted to remain functional. It wasn't too difficult to snip tiny holes in the patching material and stretch it over the snaps, tucking the ends into a slim groove in the snap itself. Well -- it worked for both the top and the bottom of the "female" end of the snap anyway.

Working around the snaps of the Boro vest.

Uncovering the "male" portion of the snap was considerably more difficult because there was no groove to hide loose ends in. After some experimenting I ended up snipping a larger hole, turning the ends under, and stitching all around with a blanket stitch. Not as neat, but at least functional. That side won't be visible when the vest is worn anyway.

Working around the snaps of the Boro vest.

You'll be hearing more about this project in the weeks, months, and perhaps years to come. Once I get the initial patching and embroidery done I'll be wearing this vest a lot, perhaps only in the house, but maybe for walking the dog or camping as well. As the vest gets worn out further I'll just keep patching it!

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Wha? I thought I - - -

Pardon the confusion. I thought I had already posted an update on this. I guess it was just one of those posts I had taken photos for, thought about, but never actually wrote? The vest I posted about nearly two weeks ago now has a button.

Saori Vest, buttoned

I like it better this way. It bothers me when vest/coat/cardigan edges flop about when I'm walking. Having it buttoned also gives the vest more shape.

Button and button hole

So here's the buttonhole. I ended up ironing fusible interfacing to the backside of the fabric and then I made a machine sewn, corded buttonhole. Against the busy handwoven fabric it seemed to need more ompf so I decided to create a tatted piece to go around it. That looked too much like a second thought so, using the same cotton weaving thread I used in the tatting, I hand embroidered buttonhole stitch over the opening and the tatted edging.


Saori Vest, buttoned

I've really been on a roll with various forms of fibre art these past few weeks. Of course that also means I've spent less time online, which in turn results in less participation on forums and nothing in the way of blog posts. 

Saori Vest, buttoned

I have plenty of blog fodder. I hope to get at least a few posts up in the next few days. 

Monday, May 15, 2017

Unusual Construction

I took that weaving I wasn't too happy with and made a vest I actually like!

It's unusual construction started with some notes posted by Sally Gray, a fellow Saori weaver  on a Raverly forum.

My handwoven fabric wasn't of the same dimensions as hers so I had to tweak the idea to work with what I had available.

The fit is good and the vest is very comfortable to wear.

I'll be shopping for a large focal button to close the front though, as I think it will look better that way.


Friday, May 12, 2017

So Pleased!

It's so nice when a product ordered online far exceeds your expectations! 

Beautiful little bag!

That's the case with the beautiful drawstring bag I received today from jarck101 on Etsy. 

Beautiful little bag!

The bag is marketed as a travelling jewelry case, but I intend to use it for my tatting supplies when I'm on the go.

Beautiful little bag!

The shop owner, Lisa, did an outstanding job of sewing up this wonderful keepsake in luxurious, quality materials. It is a real treasure.

I'm not affiliated with the shop in anyway, nor do I receive any kickback if you click on the links. I've only provided the links for your convenience. 

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Wound and Weaving

Kona had to wait a little longer for her morning walk but the Dogwood Blossom warp is on the loom.

  Dogwood Blossom

I'm liking it way more than I had anticipated.

Dogwood Blossom

In fact, it's hard to stop weaving and walk away to get other things done!

Dogwood Blossom

I'd say the colour is most accurate in this final photo.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

From Dog Warp to Dogwood

I finally got to the end of that "dog warp" that was languishing on the loom. 

And now, inspired by the pretty pink dogwood blossons on a tree in our backyard, 

I've wound a lovely new warp.

Thanks in part to a friend's donation as she destashed, I had a wonderful variety of pinks to work with! Thanks Patricia!

Saturday, May 06, 2017

A Child Pushed Me

Happy Weaver

My granddaughters were here for a brief visit today and the youngest "really, really" wanted to weave. I went in with her, as I always do, and she sat at "The Pickle Loom" and I sat at mine. Her companionship was just the push I needed to get moving on a "dog warp" that I have for some reason felt less inspired by.

A child pushed me --

I'm not exactly sure why the warp has been repelling me. I like the colours -- at least individually. I think the problem may be that I just don't like the way they are presenting together in the warp. I find the individual strands of bright yellow to be jarring, disruptive, out of harmony in some way. It's too much of a contrast and the spacing breaks the weaving up into small bits. Whatever! It's finished and I can now move on to something I find more inspiring. 

Thursday, May 04, 2017

Walked the Soles Off

I had to go out to buy a new pair of "Clarks Wave Walks" today. The old pair, my second, was shot.

I walk a lot, 1.5 to 2 hours most days. Today was almost 6 miles. All that walking really wears out a pair of shoes! The ones on the right are now in the trash, the heels showing so much wear that my gait, and feet, were suffering. Still, they have served me well and I have no hesitation paying the price for a new pair.

Wave Walks are great for walking in all kinds of weather. They are waterproof , and that's important when you follow your dog, rain or shine, through dew covered grass, puddles, and the occasional muddy patch. My shoes have often gotten very wet on the outside, but I have never had wet feet while wearing them -- ever.

I'm not affiliated in any way, nor do I get any compensation for this review-of-sorts or if you click on the link I provided. I'm just a happy customer. The link is only there for your convenience.