The ups and downs of attempting to go a whole year without buying any new clothes...

...without becoming a naturist, as the title suggests

Monday, 14 February 2011

February - Another Creative Success

The daffodils are well and truly up and the snow drops are all out in force... but it's still not quite warm enough to throw out more winter clothes yet... is it?!

I think the changing season gives me more desire than anything else to have (another) total wardrobe clear out. I have been holding out though; we move house next week and so that is definitely a good excuse to make some more space!

I have to admit to some purchases this month; all 'legal' though. I bought 4 pairs of pants for £5 and a bra for £20, both from Marks and Spencer, and some tights for £7 (ridiculously expensive and when they ladder it will be time for bare legs!). But I have also been given quite a few things from cousins and friends. They are:
Two vest tops
Four t-shirts/long-sleeved t-shirts
A skirt
Three dresses
A pair of leggings
A long knitted cardigan.

So, despite all of my clearing out, the wardrobe is probably more full than it's been for a while!

I have also been particularly creative this month. Which I am very proud of!

I found quite a good deal on Dylon machine dye on ebay and so spent a weekend with the washing machine on almost constantly to produce two bath towels, one hair towel and two hand-towels, all a very bright 'Bahama Blue' which will certainly cheer me up more in the morning than their previous, slightly grubby, white did!

I also used 'Burlesque Red' (which is a gorgeous deep red-wine colour) on two vest tops and a duvet and pillowcases. At first this wasn't so successful. The vests were the colour I expected (though annoyingly were stitched with white polyester thread, which hasn't coloured) but the duvet cover and pillowcases were much lighter than I expected. When I checked the label I discovered they were 50% polyester - I had presumed that bedding would be 100% cotton. So there is my first lesson of dyeing - ALWAYS check the fabric label first; even if you think you know what it is!

After my initial disappointment and having slept in it for a week, I have come to love my 'blackberry stained' duvet cover and pillowcases and have decided that a deep red would have been too overpowering on such a big scale... maybe.

In other creative news, I have been experimenting with crocheting a rug out of old t-shirts. I wasn't sure whether it would work but it is going brilliantly and soon I am hoping to have a really decent sized rug to put by our bed in our new house. I was surprised by the amount of fabric it uses up without growing quite as much as I had expected, but now that I have got a little further on I can see that it is becoming really thick, which makes it feel much more substantial than I thought it would  be, which is a bonus. Unfortunately progress is going to have to slow down this week, as I have reached the end of my old t-shirt supply! Either R is going to have to have a clear out of his clothes or I might have to find a jumble sale. Anyone is welcome to send unwanted t-shirts this way!!

Here is a picture of progress so far; as you can see, it is only about 5 inches long at the moment, so still has a way to go! I have used two t-shirts and a pair of leggings to get this far.

Today I am sending off our wedding invitations, which I made out of scraps of fabric, sewn (with a machine) onto the card to create a line of mini-bunting. I am really proud of the overall effect, and the responses I have had so far have been really great. It is quite a simple design and used hardly any fabric but looks very impressive (if I do say so myself!)

Perhaps later in the year when things have quietened down, I will be able to add bunting cards and crocheted rugs to my etsy site! 

My next project is to felt the brown jumper from the Christmas market and see what I can make out of that. It might be getting a bit late in the year for wrist-warmers, so I'll have to see how much fabric there is one it is felted and experiment a bit.

I have loved being so crafty this month and feel really inspired to make more things. I just wish that I could devote more time to it.

Now I'm going off in search of more signs of Spring to convince myself that the cold weather really is nearly over....

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