Thursday, 22 January 2015

Garment 5: Connect

This undemanding, raspberry-coloured vest started life as furniture. The little square of soft, unevenly faded, slightly floppy, discarded bit of used upholstery came to OSF in a personal donation. I imagine the donor hesitating: Keep. Throw. Donate! Surely someone can find some use for this!

It spent days in the Free Box, until I couldn't ignore it any more. I love the way the fading suggests its original use: I guess an ottoman, or the seat of a chair. It was very dirty, and crusty with glue, so I serged the edges, chucked it in the washer and dryer and crossed my fingers. It came out beautifully: soft-soft, and as lovely on the one side as the other. I knew I had found just the right fabric for the plastic tortoise shell/metal elephant buttons I had loved as a child, sorting through my mother's button tin. I drafted this little vest to use up as much of the fabric as possible. There was barely enough left after cutting to test the sewing machine tension.

Sadly, my mother's buttons had become too brittle, and one of them broke after it was sewn on. They were replaced with lonely, mismatched, fabric-covered buttons I've also been saving for the right garment. I hope these buttons originally belonged to lady-like, little jacket-and-skirt sets with 3/4-length sleeves. Worn with gloves. Maybe an imitation leopard-skin pillbox hat...

Size S. For sale by appointment. Enquiries at

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