Thursday, June 22, 2006

Getting the most out of hand-made wearables

While baby items, blankets, and scarves are used again and again, wearables go in and out of style. I love the classics but also enjoy trying new things and keeping up with current styles. What I don't love is spending hours making something that will only be worn a few times before it makes it's way to side of the closet reserved for "stuff I'll never wear again but don't want to throw out."

When an idea pops into my head or something inspires me, I first consider how I would make the item and how I can modify it later. I ask myself questions like: What can I add or take away from it later? How difficult will it be-can I easily add or take away length, widen or shorten the sleeves, add a collar?

The bolero shown below is one example of something I will likely modify later. It's constructed with 10 squares-2 on each side of the front and 6 for the back. I can easily add squares on the bottom to lengthen it and add buttons down the front or a tie at the top. I can also lengthen the sleeves and, with a few waves of my magic hook, I have a classic cardigan.

That was only one idea I had for modifying this bolero. I did a very rough sketch (please excuse my lack of drawing skills) of another method-make a tie lengthwise and attach, then add a slightly flared length to the bottom. The tie would fall just below the breast area (my female form has Barbie doll like proportions so the bolero appears to be longer than it would fit on something more realistic-like a genuine woman!) and the bottom edge would hit mid-hip.

Another item I recently made will likely be modified in the future also. The ruffle top, shown 5th down in the "Showcase.." post, may someday lose it's ruffle and become a tank top/shell or who knows, it may grow sleeves.

You never know what you'll come up with when it's time to retire a style and make something new again. You're already creative so use your imagination & make sure you have plenty of extra yarn in the same dye lot!

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