Wednesday, August 1

Once There was a Shirt

Once there was a lively green shirt that buttoned down the front. 
It was worn by a man named Frederick,
tailor made for him on one of his annual trips to Hawaii.
The beautiful greens, gold and aqua 
reminded him of the lushness of the rainforests.
He wore it every chance he could while on vacation, 
and every chance at home when his wife wasn't looking.
It was a quality made shirt and it made him feel so good when he wore it.
As he got older, he couldn't fasten the buttons by himself anymore.
His family helped his choose golf shirts and t-shirts
so he could still be independent.
Frederick's family had to give some of his old clothes away
to make room for the new.

One savvy thrift shopper 
recognized the quality of the cotton
and loved the beautiful colours,
and knew no one would wear the shirt again
with Frederick's name ironed on the collar.

She took it home
and deconstructed the shirt
and cut it into narrow strips.
Lots of narrow strips.


Then she started wrapping the strips around some cording, 
coiled it and stitched it.
Wrap. Coil. Stitch.
Wrap.
Coil.
Stitch.


A little bit of tilting and snipping.


Her sewing machine was almost swallowed up!


And when she was done, the lovely lively shirt had transformed into these:


All that goodness from just one shirt!

Available in my PrairieThreads Etsy shop. 
These items have all SOLD now! Thanks so much to my wonderful customers!
Please check out my shop to see similar items available!

I'm linking up to The Needle & Thread Network. Come see what other Canadian stitchers are up to:

26 comments:

  1. That's awesome! Great photos.

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    1. Thanks Bee! I love to remember the before and after!

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  2. Great post! I love the story and the finished products! Awesome! :)

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    1. Thanks Sarah! I like to imagine what the story might have been when I find something like this shirt.

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  3. i think those bowls are beautiful but i am never doing one,,,

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    1. Thanks Sherry! I have a long list of things I'll never try as well...

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  4. What a lovely thing to do with the shirt! Did you know Fredrick? Lovely bowl and coasters. Well done!

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    1. Thanks! I did not know Frederick--I just imagined what his story might have been.

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  5. great fabric, whether in a shirt or in a bowl or mat.

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    1. Thanks Brenda! It would have made a great lining for a bag too! Or quilting fabric....

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  6. Fantastic upcycling! And such vivid colour. My son's favourite is green and he went cuckoo bananas when he looked over at the screen while I was reading this post. :D

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    1. Thanks Tawny! Sorry there wasn't much green in the fabric I gave you!

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  7. Replies
    1. Thanks Jennifer! I've always loved to see how things can be remade or reinvented.

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  8. What a lovely story, and such a happy ending!

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    1. Thanks Andrea! It would have made an interesting journal cover as well....

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  9. Replies
    1. Thanks Ruth! There's a story behind every thrift shop find...

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  10. Ah -- you are breaking my heart, just a little, here. Now that my mother's name is emblazoned in all her clothes at the care home I stop and think a bit each time I encounter labelled items at the thrift store. You are compassionate as well as wonderfully talented. Lovely work!

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    1. We went through the same thing with my mother-in-law over the past few years. When there is a label, there is a much stronger realization that there was a story behind each piece of clothing. It makes me pause and wonder. Thanks for your kind words.

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  11. Theres a story in everything, we just don't always know what it is, and it is so special to know this story!

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    1. Hi Susan,
      It's funny how one label can make you pause and wonder what the story was. Thanks for stopping by!

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  12. Great story! Love what you did with the shirt.

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  13. That's amazing! I love it. You are a magician :)

    www.gothicartbymelike.blogspot.com

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    1. Hi Melike,
      Thanks for stopping by and for your kind words!

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