A Bonus ScrapHappy

Usually ScrapHappy posts appear around the 15th of the month, but this month you get an extra one, as there has been lots of scrappy activity Chez Snail recently.

Nearly 25 years ago I had to go to Canada to do some work. Fortunately I did manage a bit of time off and one of my excursions was to the Royal BC Museum. I loved the collections, but was saddened not to be able to share my visit with Mr Snail. I did, however, buy him a gift of a t-shirt featuring “First People’s Art”. He loved that t-shirt… in fact he loved it to bits… literally. Over the years it got tattier and tattier, until it was only good for wearing in bed, and then finally it had so many holes that it was unwearable. But he still loved it.

So, I put it to one side knowing that I would be inspired to make use of it at some point, and eventually I decided how to salvage the motif of concentric circles on the front. The fabric had worn so thin and completely split in places, so I knew that I would meed to mount it on something fairly sturdy, and then along came a sweatshirt that was just right for the job. I knew that it would be easiest to work on if I could temporarily glue the pieces to the sweatshirt and spray-baste seemed the answer. Off I went to the local quilting shop, where they didn’t have any. Living in a rural area, there isn’t much choice of places to buy such things, so I could either wait for the shop to get some in stock (they said they might have some later that week or the week after) or I could order online. Except those aren’t the only choices… when I searched for spray-baste online, I discovered various recipes to make my own, which is what I did. It’s basically flour and water with added alcohol, and it worked a treat.

Anyway, I carefully cut out the pieces, although I had to discard one of the circles because it was just too fragmented. Then I marked the centre of the front of the sweatshirt and spray-basted the pieces onto the sweatshirt, allowed them to dry and stitched them in place. Where there were splits, I zig-zagged along them in black thread, which meant that these repairs were hardly noticeable

A quick hand wash so that the floury marks disappeared and to get rid of the stiffness and smell of rubbing alcohol, and Mr Snail had his beloved design back.

I still have a straight section of border from around the bottom of the t-shirt and that will, no doubt, see the light of day in a future scrappy project.

-oOo-

Look out for more ScrapHappiness on the 15th and check out these contributors: KateGun, TittiHeléneEvaSue, Nanette, Lynn, Lynda,
Birthe, Turid, Susan, Cathy, Debbierose, Tracy, Jill, Claire, Jan (me)Karen,
Moira, SandraLindaChrisNancy, Alys, Kerry, Claire, Jean, Johanna,
Joanne, Jon, HayleyDawn, Gwen, Connie, Bekki, Sue and Sunny

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19 Comments

  1. What a lovely way to make use of it – it looks great too!

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  2. As that Canadian Celine Dion once almost sung “This Art will go on…” – and on a Community Clothing sweatshirt too! 🙂

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  3. I like it and hope to see it in real life before too long!

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  4. Fabulous! I think this should be known as the Lazarus Shirt – after all, how many defunct 25 year old shirts can be brought back from the dead so effectively? You inspire me to do something with the 38-year coral coloured cashmere cardigan which is now too holey in all its parts to wear (even if I were still that size) but which I have been totally unable to throw away because, well, cashmere and *gorgeous* colour… I’ll think of something.

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    • It’s surprisingly satisfying to have managed to make use of something that most folks would probably have consigned to the rag bag. I had thought about some sort of quilt using panels from old t-shirts, but I don’t thing my sewing skills stretch that far!
      I’m convinced that it’s a bad idea to throw out much-loved clothes because with some thought it is generally possible to give them a second life somehow. I look forward to seeing what you come up with for your cashmere cardigan… I felted one of mine when it got too holey and still have some bits left for future projects.

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    • Ah, I was going to suggest felting it too – I’ve done it with a couple of old floral cashmere/wool blend cardies – but that might be because of my current obsession.

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      • I feel a strange reluctance to hot-water-felt it after so many years of careful cold-water hand washes with pure soap flakes. Plus, it shrinks a fair bit, and I’m not sure what I could make from the useful bits. Even in our cold weather I don’t need neck-warmers or mittens…

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  5. Interesting. I’m not keen on using the commercially made spray baste but it does work a treat for holding the layers of quilt together and doesn’t harm the sewing machine. Is your ‘recipe’ meant to be safe for use in machine sewing? I’m assuming you believe it is as it looks as if you’ve machine zigzagged all around the motif.

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  6. I am very impressed with this. Meantime in the stitchbook box this month we are doing image transfer and it seems to me that maybe there would be a way of actually replicating the image onto fabric. I shall be thinking of your image as I work through the box.

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  7. Oh, fantastic! You are a wonder, that’s what you are.

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  8. Very impressive, and not least because you allowed Mr Snail to keep wearing a t-shirt in tatters for nearly 25 years!

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  9. now that’s more than recycling back to a useful item, that’s awesome that Mr Snail has his beloved art shirt back…

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  10. How brilliant that your were able to save this much-loved garment and give it a new lease of life! There’s a t-shirt lurking in my own work pile that might have to be subjected to this treatment… Nice one making your own spray baste, too 😊

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  11. Ann Pole

     /  February 13, 2020

    What impresses me most here is that you kept the T shirt long after it’s use by date. I’m inspired by your patience. The result is lovely.

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    • The trouble is our house is full of stuff that I plan to get round to using “one day”…this is just a drop in the ocean. However, I intend to actually make use of some of my stash of trash this year… or pass it on if I think I’m never going to get round to it.

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  12. Nikki

     /  February 19, 2020

    Truly inspired! Love it & all the wonderful experimenting you do along the way.

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