Sunday, January 15, 2012

Thrifting and Stitching

Yesterday was Estate Sale Day for me!  Thrifting is just about my favorite passtime.  I mean, I love hanging out with my child and all, but he's far more expensive than 12 vintage hankies for $2.  Estate sales, yard sales, garage sales, thrift stores.  I believe it's a genetic addiction passed down to me from my mom.  There is no cure.

Even better than a regular old ordinary estate sale is an estate sale at a mansion owned by a little old lady with her own thrift addiction.  It was the motherlode, baby.  She had one of everything.  In fact, she had, like a dozen of everything at least.  I was happy to find a cache of vintage needlepoint in the basement, much of it kitschy and framed, hallelujah.

I also scored a small blue pyrex mixing bowl, thus completing my primary colors mixing bowl set that I've been working on for years.  Finally, vintage linens, which I can never resist.  This one is part of a ginormous cross-stitch tablecloth in colors I could have chosen myself.

And this is from a table runner.

 Is it possible that the table runner is the most useless item on earth?  Clearly, I'm not the only one who thinks this; cast-off table runners are everywhere.  Since they are almost always stained, I have no qualms about cutting into them, scavenging their motifs for my own personal gain.  Honestly, although I routinely cut up vintage linens, I can't bear to cut into pristine pieces.  

I'm nearing the end of the farm piece, which is almost all upcycled linens.  The base fabric was a curtain in another life.  I purchased a full set of these curtains, which amounted to close to a billion yards of fabric, for $2.  These curtains were hand-made, well-used and faded from the sun.  I had no problem reusing them.  Working with someone else's handiwork is a loaded and significant act.  I'm thinking through the implications, but that is a subject for another post.

Meanwhile, I think I've finally gotten the hang of feather stitch.

I don't feel like I really know a stitch until I can do it without checking a reference book.  I am most comfortable with blanket stitch, split stitch and running stitch.  Lately I'm loving closed chain stitch, though open chain stitch continues to elude me.  It's loose and horrible.  My three year old could do better.

Maybe not.  Still, I'll stick to blanket stitch until I can get the open chain figured out.

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