The hills are alive with the sound of Kenmore...

Ca-chunk, ca-chunk, ca-chunk...
These are the sweet sounds that have been ringing throughout my home for a little over a month now.
I pulled this old girl out of her relaxing retirement and have to admit that her return to a regular work schedule doesn't please her.

I have been sewing away on my vintage Kenmore Ultra Stitch 12. If my memory doesn't fail me, somewhere between 1982 and 1985 my mother got this machine. This is one solid piece of metal. This is a very good thing due to the fact that there is a long history of klutziness in my family. It would take a lot to injure this machine and it is so easy to use. It is no wonder I found a few of them listed on ebay for quite a chunk of change! (who knew?)
It got some use while in my mother's care but it had no idea what it was in for when I absconded with it for four years of design school. After college it helped me to sew my wedding dress (that was it's last big assignment) a few hems here and there, and quite a few masterful mock ups during my design career. It is a new day and my new career has created a need for this old girl to get back to big business. This machine aids me in creating a bevy of repurposed goods for my website.
I can honestly say we (me and the sewing machine) have been as busy as little birdies sewing vintage fabric wine bottle wraps.

This is where my story takes an interesting turn.

Not all of the fabrics that I use to make my creations come in easy to use folded yardage. Where is the challenge in that? I wanted to share with you the various back stories behind the fabrics that make up these unique gift items.

Do you remember the part in the Rogers and Hammerstein film The Sound of Music when Maria makes play clothes for the Von Trapp children out of the drapes?
This is one of my favorite parts in the movie. My subconscious must have filed away these scenes for future inspiration.

In a recent article on Rachel Bilson in the November 2009 issue of Lucky, it shows that she and I are on the same page about this scene from the movie.

"My favorite part in The Sound of Music is when Julie Andrews makes the children clothes from drapes. Proof that inspiration can come from the most unlikely places." Rachel Bilson
The more I thought about it, there were other films, that I loved, where this resourceful trick of making drapes into clothes was put to use.
Scarlett dawns a beautiful drape dress to visit Rhett while he is in jail in the 1939 film Gone with the Wind.

More recently in the 2007 movie Enchanted, Giselle makes herself some dresses using Patrick Dempsey's drapes and even a throw rug.

This brings me to my projects. I may not be creating lovely clothing from drapes but I am repurposing them into wine wraps that are as cute and unique as they are functional.

These are my awesome mid- century barkcloth curtains. When I bought them a few years ago I had hemmed them and there was some left over fabric...
I used some of the left over fabric to make the base of this wrap.
Just call me Maria Von Trapp. (or Girly Von Trapp)

Another pair of curtains I picked up.
The colors in this print are so amazing that I am continually inspired to use this print in different way. It's a good thing that there is so much yardage in a drapery panel.

Voila! I just added a vintage plastic slider and a quirky ditsy floral and the curtain has a new life! (Hopefully a really great one at some fab party)

I often buy large boxes of fabrics & remnants at auctions never knowing exactly what I will find. In one particular box I found quite a few unfinished sewing projects. This box included what appears to be the top portion of a dress. It was fully lined too! Since there was no way I was going to be squeezing into this one, it has been deconstructed and repurposed.

Ta da! Even the bow on this one came from another curtain panel that I had purchased at a flea market.
Another partially completed project that I found in the box at an auction.

now finished!

You may remember this dress from one of my previous blogs. It was an amazing garage sale score and I had no idea what I was going to use it for when I purchased it.
I know now.

This apron that was probably worn by some lady stuck at home cooking and cleaning away.

Now it is fit to go out and about.

This is another dress that I bought at a garage sale and was made from feed sack cloth.

It is now featured as a bow on one of my recent adds for the holiday season.

This vintage Christmas table cloth...

Is now hoping to table hop!
Please don't despair. None of these pieces were in perfect condition when I purchased them. They tend to have some "condition issues" and I long to make them into some new again instead of sitting there with holes or rust stains.
I hope you have enjoyed my little version of E True Hollywood Stories on some of my product.
Till next time, it a wrap!

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