This weekend, I posted some photos of my epic banner making adventure for the pride march in Nantes last month – and today I want to share some inspiration for another project I am planning to make this summer. I am all into making things with a message, queer/feminist crafting right now! Usually in summer, I am less into knitting, but this year, I discovered the joy of making little improvised neckerchiefs or bandanas out of cotton yarn. At the moment, I am making a striped one and a rainbow one for a baby, but I have bigger plans!
The other day I came across a photo of vintage sewing accessories and I thought: Why not photographing my own little collection and tell you more about it? I think a lot of people collect vintage craft materials, but also a lot of us start out with vintage material that is handed down to us from mothers and grandmothers… So without further introduction: here is my own collection!
Summer is passing so fast this year! During May I had so many ideas of what to make for this year’s edition of Summer of Basics, but the June went by in a blink and now half of the three months is already over! I decided to write about my making plans anyway, partly to make myself stick to it…
It is my first year in this new city, in a new climate (near the ocean!) and in a smaller city than before. This means my wardrobe really needs some adjustments! The weather in the Bretagne is quite different than in Berlin and I am definitely spending more time outdoors (on the beach!) than before.
May is already over! And it was such a beautiful month, full of early summer energy, so many new projects in planning, trips to the beach, meeting old and new friends… Today is the last day of Me Made May, and this marks the first year where I participated more actively, and it has been a great experience in general! I took more photos of my handmade outfits than probably in the rest of the year combined, I wore some handmade things that I usually never wear and I identified some big gaps in my wardrobe. So here is a little overview and my conclusion from this month!
There are many things happening around reducing waste, recycling, reusing, repairing… and a lot of it in the crafting world. I thought about how to reduce my own „waste production“ while crafting and put together some people and projects that inspire me. There are so many ideas out there! From actual Zero-Waste sewing patterns, to a million ways to use your scraps and tiny leftover fabric pieces.
So before I will talk about my own practice, here are some ideas I like:
Use your scraps to make quilt blankets, patch holes in other garments… etc.
Compost your scraps of natural fibers (that are dyed with natural colors!)
For my own practice, I implemented a little recycling system, and I hope it will help me to actually stop creating any waste:
For the tiniest scraps, like cut thread, serger waste, etc. I set aside a paper bag to eventually use them as stuffing for a pillow, or if I will ever get to it, handmade toys.
A tote bag holds all my small fabric scraps. They are too small to use for clothing, but could still become quilts, patches for holes in other clothes, or letters on a handmade banner.
A small box holds the scraps that are big enough to be used for clothes, pouches, etc. This is actually my favorite treasure box! It holds cut off sleeves from gorgeous 80s silk shirts, pieces of great fabric that I used for other projects… And it is an immense source of inspiration for me! I go to it from time to time and make a patchwork top from silks, or leftover jersey. Making patchwork tops or pillowcases allows me to let my creativity go free, to play with colors and textures. The other day when I bought some beautiful new fabrics, one of my first thoughts was „I will have great scraps again!“.
Sorting the scraps by size helps me to access the ones I am looking for faster. It would probably make sense to sort them by material as well, but I don’t have enough shelf space for that.
How do you reduce waste while creating? Do you have some great ideas on how to use those small scraps?
As I said in my post about my plans for 2018, I moved to a new city and I want to meet people! To be precise, queer people and knitters, sewists etc. So in order to make this plan reality, I created a little flyer and a Facebook group for this Queer/Feminist Knitting Club that is about to start here in Nantes. Join!
So this is an ad for something really cool my girlfriend and some friends created (and I participated in!) and I want to share it with as many people as possible: Its a queer-feminist photography zine called The Log, and now you can buy your copy on Etsy!
I found this sweater some years ago at my parent’s place, when my mother was sorting through clothes to donate or throw away. It’s a nice and simple wool sweater that nobody except moths were ever interested in: It had some bad holes in the shoulder area.
I am starting the Summer of Basics make-along late, but I am ready and challenging myself to make an outfit entirely out of materials that I already own. Not buying new fabrics is hard, especially with the new Atelier Brunette collection around, but I have so much fabric stashed that needs to be used. I will also finally do things that sit in my making queue for too long, so I hope this will be a success all over! Creating an entire outfit is quite the challenge for me, as I usually just make single garments without really planning a wardrobe or matching items together. I always figure, if I like it, it will fit my style… However, this time it will be different!
My plan is to make:
Summer pants with deep pockets from an 80s Burda magazine from a beautiful blue cotton fabric
A black silk shirt, for which I will recycle an old skirt from my mother with beautiful pearl buttons
A summer scarf from rust colored cotton yarn in a cross stich pattern
I already started the scarf and the pants, so I am quite confident I will finish my Summer of Basics-Outfit in time!