An Upcycled Cushion, and Three Knitted Jumpers

I tend to prefer sewing clothes, but every now and then I’ll make something for the house. This week I made a cushion cover, and also made the cushion itself out of upcycled materials.

I have some old cushions from Habitat that are well over 10 years old and completely flattened and stained. They came round the world and back when we did our stint in Singapore. The last time I unzipped them to wash the covers, I discovered that the fabric of the cushions had completely disintegrated – and I mean completely. There was just dust left. Which is… kind of freaky?

Anyway I had this lump of cushion filling.

So I took a couple of old toiles, unpicked the darts, and sewed them up into a 45x45cm cushion casing.

If you look closely, you might notice that fancy felled seam. These piece of old toiles weren’t wide enough, so I had to piece them together. I took the opportunity to practice using the new felling foot I bought for my machine after reading David Page Coffin’s Shirtmaking, in which he heavily encouraged the use of the felling foot – and I must say, it is rather good.

Then I fluffed all the stuffing up to bring it back to life. This made a LOT of mess as all that disintegrated fabric was mixed up in there. I ended up putting on a facemask to avoid breathing it in 😷

Next up, I squashed it all in and stitched the gap shut on the machine. I did a crap job of making that neat because the huge stuffed cushion was a bit awkward to manipulate! I usually hand stitch cushions closed, but what’s the point? No one’s going to see it.

Cushion done.

Finally I made a cover made out of a fat quarter of quilting cotton that has been in my stash for years. I made the cover in the same dimensions as the casing so it’s not saggy (had to mess with the seam allowances a bit to make it work as my fat quarter was a bit skinny).

There you have it. Trash & stash into something useful.

A lot of knitting updates this week, too. I went to Scotland for a week and didn’t fancy taking my big project with me, so I started a new one (I know, I know!!):

As you can see it’s going insanely quickly. Not only is it stockinette on nice worsted wool and lovely big needles (relative to my other projects), but it’s also my first time knitting a bottom-up sweater. I’ve been afraid of them for the longest time, but I now have no idea why. It’s so satisfying! I’ve already knitted the whole body up to the under arms, and am now on the first sleeve. Usually when knitting top-down, the fun bit is in the yoke, and the body and sleeves are tedious because you just want to be finished. But doing it bottom-up means I do the “boring” bits while I have all that new-project energy, and I get to look forward to ending on the yoke.

This one has a fun yoke, too. You’ll see.

Here’s the birthday sweater I’ve been working on since the dawn of time (or last Christmas) – far slower progress.

My plan is to finish the sleeves on the blue jumper and join them onto the body first, before I return to finish this project. It’s not long til it’s done, but second sleeve syndrome right?

And my third concurrent knitting project, the one I’m making with my knitting club, is going nicely too:

We’re a good way into the cables now. This is the most intricate of my three projects, and it takes the most work for sure. I find it quite hard on the hands to knit, although that has improved since I switched to the correct size cable!

As ever, cat pics from the week.

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