Sunday, April 29, 2012

Epic Fail Upcycling Project - Pet Mat

Working with upcycled fabrics, that used to have a former life as something else is one of my favorite ways to sew. The challenge with this, of course, is that it doesn't always work out too well. A lot of the time, I sort of make up the "pattern" as I go along. One of the first "fabrics" I upcycled was a vintage rain coat that had seen better days. It was stained, but it was also this great striped fabric. I made a tote bag with it, and it was the first project I ever blogged about. Kind of like this...
Since then, I've made a bunch of projects using old slickers. I made a fabulous art smock for my daughter, and I made a great lunch bag for myself. With those under my belt, I had this idea to make our cat a "placemat". She's a super sloppy eater, and there's always water and food on the floor when she's done. I have one I bought at Ikea, but I wanted a cool one that I had made. I cut out what would be an applique of her footprints and got to work. And that's where my troubles began. For some reason this jacket had a funky finish on it. When I was trying to sew layers together they literally wouldn't go under the foot...they just STUCK to the plate. The zigzag just would not zig. Or zag. Not. good. Three broken needles and MUCH cursing later, this is as far as I got, and I gave up.
I may try again if I can find another coat without that sticky coating on it. I usually find them at Goodwill for around $5. If I decide to try again, I'll be sure to let you know. What I did manager to do was get half of my rails made for my "Off the Rail" quilt. It's a Jaybird Quilts pattern, and I am using an Anna Griffin "Carmen" fat quarter bundle I got at Sample Spree in Houston the year before last. I had been saving it for something special, and I'm glad I dug into it. It really looks great so far and it's super preppy with all the pink and green.
Last but not least, I ran my second 5k today. It was on flat ground this time. THANK GOD. It was only 3.1 miles (a real 5k) instead of 3.25 miles. And I have to say, I felt like I rocked it. My pace was 10:56, the best pace I've ever ran for the full 5k. And I have this awesome husband who comes to cheer me on and take pictures of me.
That's me to the left in the grey, just about to go over the line in under 34 minutes. Not bad for someone who thought they could never run.

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