Last weekends thrift shop finds...

I do not know why but I have an aversion to IKEA, or at least shopping there.  That place is like Costco, just try to walk out without spending under $100 on stuff you didn't know you needed.  I think I'm also a little wary of the quality factor...  I remember growing up things made in Japan were considered junk, then Taiwan, Korea, now China.  Find something made in Japan these days and it means quality, go figure.  This brings me to my first purchase.  A second hand IKEA lamp.  I like this a lot..... it's made of glass and not plastic.  I also like that I had the small base light bulb for it already so no hardware store trip was necessary.  I probably paid half the new price which shows just how much I liked it.
I found this great stainless sauce pan as well.  Non-molested and very clean for it's age.  They had the whole set in fact and I was very proud of myself for leaving it's brothers and sisters behind only needing this one size.  I've already used it three times!

Everyone keeps talking about felting and I wanted to get in on the action.  This sweater was hand knit in Nepal out of some very serious wool that may have been better suited for scouring pads.  I had read somewhere that to felt something you needed to remove the oils from the wool while agitating.  Light bulb moment...  dishwasher detergent (non-bleach kind) is excellent at removing oils.  Threw this sweater in the wash with a cup of store brand powder and it felted up big time.  

The body is extremely thick now and I'm not exactly sure what I'll end up doing with it.  A coworker suggested I use clippers to shave the fuzz off and I thought that sounded like a great idea.  Either I'll cut it up and use the pieces to make something or I'll try to refashion something from the general shape.
Makes me itch just looking at it......    Please, give me some ideas!  

So far I'm either going to make a bag of sorts out of the body using the arms as handles, or cut it into squares for things like coasters.  

6 comments :: Last weekends thrift shop finds...

  1. Good tip on using clippers! I just found an Irish wool sweater - in a DUMPSTER - and brought it home, washed and felted it. I'm thinking of using it in the mid-layer to sew up some cloth lady pads, but not sure if wool is a good plan for that or not (need to do my research). I'm guessing you're not going to be making any of those.

    I look forward to seeing what other people recommend!

  2. This idea of lady pads is intriguing.. Wool seems like a really good option for something like this. However.. on washing such items I think they would benefit from a detergent with enzymes. Making one's own pads and homemade detergent are ideas born in the same mind however I don't think homemade detergent contains enzymes? Enzymes are a really good way to clean biologicals....

    On another note, wool pads would certainly keep things toasty down there. Maybe not for summer use?

    Ok yes, I still need more input on uses for felt although please feel free to chime in on above reference.

  3. Great finds at the thrift store! You pick the good stuff. Haha, the sweater shrank a lot, it's so funny to see how small they get. Does the knit still stretch? Do you like the color? If you line it with a lightweight stretch polar fleece of the good kind you could make a superb hat for the chilly days in the Boston area. I lived there in the 80's but I still remember how in the dead of winter the wind would bite my ears when I forgot my head wear.

  4. Fantastic finds. I love the IKEA lamp and yes I have the same aversion to IKEA as well. Love the felted wool sweater. I've used felted wool quite a bit for appliques to clothing and such. You can also eliminate some of the fuzz with a fine tooth comb by running the comb along the sweater. I really like the color. I can see it appliqued to a t-shirt "alabama chanin" style.

  5. I know wool is included in many lady pads (if you look online you'll see a BAJILLION), I'm just not sure if sweater-wool is the right kind - and what layer to put it in (middle? bottom? prolly not top).

    I also know you do not need any kind of special soap for laundering these items (for instance I soak them in water and castille soap after use while they await washing). But, you're talking to a woman who cloth diapered and uses cloth pads AND makes her own detergent (using Borax, Fels Naptha, and baking soda)! Works fine and I even kept all the above (diapers, pads) beautiful and stain-free (hanging things in the sun works better than any chemical treatment.

    I'm rather off the topic of felt but - I love talking laundry. (weirdo!)

    Another thing: what about collecting these bits, cutting pieces, and making a quilt? It would be SO beautiful, rugged, and SO warm... just, would take a long time to collect enough wool. Still, it's cheap, when you dumpster-dive and thrift-shop!

  6. I totally had a dream I was shaving this sweater and it was extremely satisfying. I'm a little wary of the mess this might create as I don't own a vacuum. Something will become of this project this weekend.

    Oh excellent idea to line with fleece... that would make some seriously warm headgear.

    Applique is also a great idea, thinking how to make that masculine. A fine tooth comb! Considering I used to own an entire salon you would think I'd have a comb right? Wrong! I don't own a comb, hair dryer, a brush... Talk about another lifetime.

    A felt quilt sounds awesome. It would probably turn out something like those old thick army blankets. Speaking of... that would be an excellent source for felting wool right? I never see those around anymore though. Now that I think about it that's what I used as the layer under the canvas on my ironing table.

    Yeah I can totally talk laundry for days. Cleaning things is extremely therapeutic for me. I have a car cleaning fetish as well. Did you seem my posting on homemade starch? It's been months now and my bottle is still fresh.

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