Today in Mrs. Marple's class we learned about transforming the old and boring into the new and fun.
Otherwise known as taking my bland cable sweater that I purchased five years ago from Wal-Mart and converting it into a chic new cardigan.
When Mrs. Marple started the lecture by asking us to think of something that we already own that had perhaps lost its luster, I immediately considered this sweater.
And my recent obsession with ruffles.
She then encouraged us to start envisioning that item as something else. I saw a cardigan with three-quarter sleeves. So, casting fear aside, I took my fabric shears and cut this sweater right down the middle.
Then I rather unceremoniously chopped the sleeves off at the elbows.
And then it was time to embellish. I rummaged through my fabric stash and located this soft gray checkered remnant that I salvaged from Habitat for Humanity's thrift store.
I knew it would be a perfect fit for the ruffles.
After some brainstorming, I decided that the best thing to do was fold under the raw edges on each strip, making sure to sew a zig-zag stitch along the sides to prevent fraying.
Then, after finishing four strips, I tucked and pinned each ruffle into place, which doesn't take as long as you might think. Plus I was simultaneously watching previous episodes of Glee while pinning (have you seen that show!? It's probably my new favorite. And yes--I once was a choir geek.)
I wasn't too worried about perfection here, because really--is someone going to measure my ruffles to make sure they're all the same width? I think not! And if they tried, I'd probably have to harm them, because that's just plain weird.
Consider yourself warned.
Once the ruffles were pinned and stitched onto the cardigan, I sewed the sleeve cuffs back onto the sleeves (cleverly making sure that they could fold up--this took some problem solving and lots of second guessing...) and then I sewed hooks-and-eyes along the middle to close the sweater.
Finally, I finished it all off with a slender belt.
And now that I've finished prancing around the house in my old-now-new cardigan, and bragging gratuitously to my husband about how I didn't spend any money on my newest fashion find, I should pause and thank Mrs. Marple for having such a good idea.
Frankly I can't wait to hunt through my closet to see what other cast-offs I can find!
See you tomorrow!
Previous Days at the Institute:
Day 10: the balancing act (as told through vintage advertisements)
Day 9: pink, pink & pink
Day 6: premade hostess