My First Dress, Belt and Traditional Leather Shoes.

Here is another combo of some of the things I did in school while I was studying textile work. This grey linen dress is the first one I made. I might have done something in middle-school too but that was more like a night gown probably. There is also a woollen belt included and some leather shoes.

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Photo by Karlo Salu.

It was our first “real” sewing job on the first year, a real garment. For this one our initial task was to make a simple shirt dress, everyone using the same cut, but as most objected to that, we got to choose our own. The only rule was now, it had to be linen.

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Photo by Karlo Salu.

I choose a nice loose cut for myself so it would feel good to wear in summer. Might be a bit dark as far as that goes but I liked the colour. The textile itself is a bit to the rough or more rustic side but I feel it will soften by time and washing a bit.

I think the hardest part for me in that point was the yellow edging. It’s not as pristine as I would prefer but practice makes perfect, right?! Over all I’m cool with it.

In another class we had to make an at least 2 m long belt by card weaving (that you can see here on my dress). I dreaded it and left it for the last minute. After making the construction out of a wooden broom stick, some screw-in hooks and some fishing swivels and measuring out the yarns it was so easy that I accidentally made it longer.

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I used 11 cards and three different colours of yarn. As the matter of fact it’s my second colour combo here as I completely messed up measuring the first one which had more green instead of blue. This is the option I had left with the yarns I had in hand.

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Although I’m not a big fan of blue, I really like it here and I also really ended up enjoying the whole process. Next time I would like to get the yarns measured out the first time. What an awful waste, but I’m sure I’ll find a use for them too.

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Photo by Karlo Salu.

Last but not least here might or might not have also noticed that I’m wearing some strange leather shoes here. These are my first ones that I made in a one-day training about four years ago now.

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Photo by Karlo Salu.

Leather work was also one of the reasons that I choose that school, so far away from my home but in the end I didn’t get it for some really strange and obscure reasons. Another time, I guess.

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Striped Cotton Rug.

Today I’m going to show you my very first loom weaving project. Before this I had only made a couple small samplers. Now our task was to create a full size striped yarn. It could be a rag rug and mine is but one could also use store bought material.

First question in my head was, where shall I do this? I don’t own a loom and I live in a really small flat so getting one wouldn’t be an option either. Also I live about 254 km from school so as it was a homework task this didn’t seem an option either. Including the fact that most of my classmates already cued up for them.

A couple of school sessions later I had thought about contacting a local cultural centre that I read had a loom but I hadn’t done that either. And in school it turned out there was no cue either any more. So all I had to do before next school week was to get the rags and cut them. I had a colour scheme in my head but it changed a little as to what colours I was getting from my parents place and from thrift stores. It turns out greens are rather rare.

The cutting took very long time. I even had to sharpen my scissors a few times meanwhile. We had a rough number how many kilos of material we should have but I’m bad with numbers and don’t remember it. I do remember I had spare (which is way better than the opposite) and could share them with my classmates. We also had measures that we had to keep so here is my sketch with some samples (pardon the horrible quality).

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The weaving itself was a joy. I enjoyed every bit of it and it went much faster than I had anticipated. Some said they had sore backs/shoulders/bottoms the next day but I didn’t get any of that. If I ever should have a larger space of my own I shall definitely buy myself a loom too.

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At first I put the finished rug in the bedroom where it fit perfectly between the wall and the bed and it stayed there for quite a while. Until a couple of months ago I needed to take photos of it for my portfolio so I brought it to our living room and now it stays there. I quite enjoy looking at it. The edges are somewhat wobbly but I think it’s due to different materials, some were a lot more stretchier than others. I don’t mind.

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Both ends got a fringe too for the last finishing touch. I really did enjoy weaving and the thought that I could reuse something purposely. Although many rug materials that you can buy are also scraps from fabric industry so it would have been not bad either.

So what does everyone think? I’m happy for my first rug. No idea when I’ll be able to make another one but we’ll see, there will be the time.