Thursday, February 26, 2015

In which I took a too-big, stained and ripped 100% cashmere sweater and made it a cardigan

I went to the thrift store yesterday on 50% of day. Heart attack. I did not know if was 50% day when I went, so I was quite pleased. I found a beautiful blue 100% cashmere sweater, by L.L. Bean, for $3. Be still my heart.

It was ripped.

It was stained.

It was three or four sizes too big.

Ah well. I decided that for $3 I could try to refashion it, or at least re-claim the yarn. I decided to share the process here, in case it gives you an idea of refashioning something in the future.

I did plan on cropping that. :)

It doesn't show up in the picture, but there is a small hole and stain in the center of the front. I was able to mend the other holes, but that one, right next to a dark stain, was too obvious to wear without chopping up the sweater. 

First off, before cutting anything, I sewed a seam to re-enforce the knit so that it would not unravel. After that, I chopped off the cowl, pinned the raw edge under and hand sewed the neckline. 

After carefully determining the exact middle, I, again, sewed reinforcing seams before cutting. In this case, the yarn felted together enough so that unraveling was not a big deal, but if you are doing this with another sort of yarn, it could be devastating without a re-enforcing seam. In the end, I cut an additional 1.5 inches from either side of the front cut.

I folded the edges over and finished the raw edges with some scrumptious raw silk bias tape.

Hooray! Now I have a super awesome cashmere cardigan.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015


This is my latest completed sewing project. It has taken up so much of my time. Matt is happy about it though and has been talking about all of the vestments he wants me to make him now. This set is for a customer.

I can't take credit for any of the designs as it was a custom order.

The embroidery came from Russia, I think.

I am so happy to have finished it. My health problems caused a huge delay.

That phelonian made me want to rip out my hair, haha.

I wish I could say that I have lots of fun projects in store, but my next order is for seat cushions, ha. I desperately want to make some re-enactment clothing- that would be so much fun. 

My favorite authors as hipsters


I've been updating my Zazzle shop with new designs. Most of them feature some of my favorite authors as hispters. This is my latest:

Aside from that, I've done Shakespeare, Jane Austen and the Bronte sisters. I like Zazzle a lot. It is a great place to make custom photo projects. My current hobby is to make magnets for my refrigerator.

Friday, February 6, 2015

Such things.

I debated somewhat writing this post. I have purposefully avoided talking so much about personal matters on this blog. Still, it feels nice being able to have a space somewhere to relate such a life altering event that most people will never know about.

I posted here before one or two of my miscarriages. I am happy when other people feel open in discussing theirs, but, I myself, go back and forth in what I want other people to know about; namely: Facebook. Facebook, oh, Facebook. It can be nice for some things, but other times it is just too overwhelming. Thus, my little blog that most people don't know about.

I do wonder though, why do I even want to write publicly at all about my struggles? I used to be content in filling journals, quite private, and overflowing with emotion.

I suppose that is another topic. At any rate, I've had four miscarriages, then this. A few weeks ago, I found out that I was pregnant. It was quite remarkable, because I haven't been able to for quite some time. I immediately had blood tests every other day or so to check hormone levels. I passed the point where I lost most of my previous pregnancies with very high hormone levels; it looked perfect. Of course, I always knew and always have known, that getting past the first week doesn't mean much, but for my history, it was a very good sign.

I had my first ultrasound at 5 weeks. I was apprehensive, but very excited to get a peak at the baby. When nothing showed, at first, on the screen, inwardly, my heart sunk before the technician sadly declared, "It's a tubal pregnancy."

That was it. I couldn't believe it. There are some moments in life that feel completely surreal and that was one of them.

I don't need to explain the process that followed- it is all that one would expect. More tests, other people to confirm it, no doubt about it- I was even starting to get pains in my side. I had thought I had pulled a muscle a few days before and hadn't thought much of it since the pain wasn't very consistent, nor was it quite severe; still it was there.

I get to this point and just stop writing. This is where, when talking to friends I often gloss over it, using as non-descriptive words as possible for one part, while emphasizing the life threatening position that it puts the mother in and, in my particular case, that there was absolutely no possibility of saving the child.

The child that I had begged God for. The child that I had thought about endlessly for nearly four years, just hoping that we would have another chance. The child that, though so small, I already felt so much love for.

I had a wonderful two weeks of being pregnant. I knew that it might end poorly. I tried so hard not to fret about it every hour of the day. I decided that I would simply live in the moment, thanking God for each hour I could carry a child once again. It might sound dramatic, but A) I am a dramatic person and B) I've had baby fever for years.

I told some friends that I was pregnant. I decided that worrying over miscarrying wouldn't make it better, so just living as if everything would be fine would at least make my time, however short, much happier. I am so glad that I did that, because out of the deep sadness of the last weeks, that was such a joyous time.

Honestly, I don't know how I could have made it through this without my spiritual father. Our bishop too, who teaches ethics at seminary, saved my sanity. People have prayed for me before during various life events- I don't mean a prayer while at a friend's house, but the times when you know people are praying from all over the place. I've never felt it as strongly as I did in the days that followed. Obviously, I was sad, very sad, but I felt so much peace, too.

To be honest, I don't know how some people would take it if I told them. Before this happened, I used to think that I might let myself die before terminating a pregnancy, even if it meant my death. I was still thinking that when I was told by all the people that I have trusted in life that I needed to live for my family, rather than dying for a child who couldn't live.

Now, though I am healing physically, I feel like I lost something, some bit of innocence gone, replaced with an emptiness for what once was.

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