my $3.99 felting experiment

i found a sweater in the little girl’s section at goodwill. something about the neutral tones and subtle stripes made me pause and ponder. i’ve heard about people buying wool sweaters and then felting them or ripping them apart and making them into something else. but i’ve always felt a little strange about taking something perfectly fine which someone else could perhaps use, only to change it into something i want.

i kept wondering though. i had never felted anything before (well, not intentionally. there was “that” incident when i was a teenager…an oversized wool icelandic sweater my mom had knit which i had thrown in the dryer by mistake, only to have it come out too small to fit a toddler. i don’t like to think about that too much. being a knitter myself and knowing just how much work goes into a project of that magnitude, i marvel at my mom’s ability to not disown me right then and there.) and this seemed like a good candidate. i’m pretty sure it was some sort of wool, but i couldn’t be sure. this was the tag inside…

(if the photo looks familiar, i mentioned it here)

i’m sure it was some wool though. it had a few moth-eaten spots out of it…

and it was crazy itchy. the more i thought about it (really, i can convince myself of anything if i think on it long enough), the more i realized this sweater was probably donated because some poor little girl had worn it and itched like mad, pulled it off and never worn it again.  no, i would buy this sweater. and in doing so, i would save some unfortunate youngster from the discomfort of a moth-eaten itch-machine.  (see? convinced myself. quite easily done.)

so it came home with me…

now that i look at it, what an oddly shaped sweater it is too. no, no… i definitely should feel no guilt about taking this one off the racks. it was meant to be something else.

so into my sewing studio it went, meeting its fate with my rotary cutter…

a few snips, a few stitches, a whole lot of suds and washed with hot water twice, and…

not too shabby!

actually, it is very shabby. i left the edges raw and the felting process gave it that shaggy unkempt look. it closed up the moth-eaten holes too.

another nice result? the yarn softened up incredibly after the felting. huh. i was impressed, and can see the appeal of felting things.

this bag is going full-circle. i’m donating it back. i hope someone can enjoy it as much as i enjoyed making it.

$3.99 to learn a new craft and create something new (actually, $3.99 + soap and water, a bit of thread and a bit of my time)… worth every penny.

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7 Responses to my $3.99 felting experiment

  1. smilindown says:

    you are so cool :)

    And I had no idea what felting was! I’ve heard Shellee mention it several times, though.

  2. This is very cool…I love it!

  3. googiemomma says:

    That’s really cool! And the fact that you’re redonating it is awesome! I’ve never tried felting either (at least on purpose), but I always thought it looked cool…maybe one of these days I’ll get around to giving it a shot!

  4. ~*~Patty says:

    Thank you for visiting my Magpie’s Nest, it gave me the chance to come and visit your cool blog!
    Wonderful repurposing of that sweater, your bag is beautiful! I have just been playing with felting bars of soap :)

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