Fabric is Everywhere


UO birdcage fabric
Rodger sent me this fabric link … it's actually a $28 curtain panel at Urban Outfitters, and it measures 84" x 52" (there's also a bedspread that is 90" x 108", more than double the width, for $4 more). That's more than two yards of very wide fabric; buy one or two of these and you could have an enormous-skirted (and really adorable!) 50s dress very quickly.

Have we talked about how awesome curtain panels, tablecloths, and sheets can be for garment-making? We should … you can get a lot of interesting fabric for not so much money (especially when they go on sale). If you're willing to risk maybe someday walking into a party and matching the drapes (which, by the way, is worth it for the comedy gold alone), you should always be checking out the home-dec departments for funky prints and stripes or even just cheap plain fabric for muslins. It's all just fabric, after all!

Somebody (and I can't remember who, I've been to a LOT of conferences lately) told me about a site where someone takes funky store-bought throw.jpgllow covers and makes handbags out of them, but that somebody actually told me live and in person, and I stupidly didn't write it down. Does anyone know about this? Because it would make a nice thing to link right here …

0 thoughts on “Fabric is Everywhere

  1. Erin, the link doesn’t seem to be working.On topic: I’ve bought several curtains from Urban Outfitters which are destined to be gowns! I got handwoven Indian cotton, striped with silver; and I got some beautiful gold brocade sari pieces, and some hand-blocked Indian prints. From K-Mart, no less, I got tamboured white Indian cotton, and I wish I’d gotten more of it, too. Urban Outfitters has some cherry blossoms on a red background that I’ve been eyeing, as well. I’ve seen a museum display utilize thrift store curtain material to recreate an early 19thC woman’s headdress! We likes curtain fabric, we does.

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  2. Jean Kerr, author of “Please Don’t Eat the Daisies”, and wife of drama critic Walter Kerr wrote a hilarious chapter about arriving at a very posh party wearing a dress made from the identical fabric used on curtains on THREE walls of the party room. She was almost six feet tall, and wrote many pieces about the pain of finding clothes that fit. She was writing in the 1950’s, and is still one of my favorite humor authors.

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  3. I was *just* looking at that birdcage fabric in an Urban Outfitters the other night! It is really cute, although, be warned, quite see-through. Your dress would need to be lined for sure.

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  4. I love revamping anything, so the idea of using a skirt to make a pillow or vice versa, is right up my alley. Yet another reason to get those sewing skills in action…

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  5. My absolute favorite source for skirt fabric is garage sales. The feeling of accomplishment I get when I find a fabulous curtain panel for a quarter is embarrassing. My 8 yo daughter has several skirts made of gorgeous old lace curtains.

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  6. Carol Burnett did a spoof of Gone With the Wind, and wore the curtains from the front hall – including the curtain rod! I miss those variety shows, and the great clothes people wore on them.

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  7. I love Garden State.And, speaking of Urban Outfitters and toile… I can’t help but titter over the S&M toile. Especially when I think of all of the traditional, *respectable* toiles out there with those busty women spilling out of their dresses.

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  8. Not only have I made skirts from curtains, bedsheets, and tablecloths, but last year I bought a ruffled burgundy satin tree skirt and, with 15 minutes of work, turned it into a circle skirt for me.

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  9. So, I’m not the lone ranger after all. A week ago I bought an Urban Outfitters rayon quilt at the thrift store for 10 bucks. It whispered “coat” to me.

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  10. Where was I when this was posted? I missed a day of ADAD!I saw the print and recognized it as a spin on an earlier Urban Outfitter’s offering of bird cage print curtains. If only they had those panels now because then I could match dress to drapes of my friend’s baby. Back in March my friend wrote, “I bought some more curtains from Urban Outfitters today–for the baby’s room. They have pink flower/branches and little birdcages on an offwhite background. If the baby turns out to be a boy, I’d probably just use the curtains elsewhere.”It was a girl! Thank you for inspiring me to look more carefully at curtains. I cannot wait to get a that sewing machine and learn to sew. Should I just drive the 5 hours one way to get it rather than wait for it to come to me? These bird cages make me think I should. Holly

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  11. If curtain fabric works for Scarlett O’Hara in “Gone With the Wind,” it works for me! I have used many decorator fabrics to make jackets, vests, skirts and purses. That’s why it takes me an hour and a half to browse through the fabric store. đŸ˜‰

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  12. I remember that Carol Burnett episode *Gone With the Wind* so funny. What about the *Sound of music* when Julie Andrews(Maria) made all those kids clothes out of curtains. That was a classic too.

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  13. Re: Christmas tree skirtJilli-Why didn’t I think of that? Of course then I would need another skirt for the tree, would then decide I needed another skirt, have to go buy another tree skirt…where would the madness end.Added bonus: Previously used tree skirts would have Christmas tree scent lingering, and if I added a jingle bell and my own luminous self, I could be creating a multi sensory experience, spreading Christmas cheer to one and all as I went about my day.The other Jill, AKA Jilly to those who know me best.

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  14. For my wedding dress, I scoured ebay to find the perfect floral lace- and it ended up being a $20 tablecloth that I layered over $400s worth of crepe-back satin silk!

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  15. So, I love this print and bought one over the summer. Now it is waiting in the cue to be a dress. However, I am conflicted about shopping at Urban Outfitters anymore – please check out UrbanCounterfitters.blogspot.com – and decide for yourself.

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  16. Whenever I read about sewing with sheets, I get such vivid flashbacks of being a fourteen-year-old bridesmaid, in a dress made of a lime gingham-printed sheet. Only the gingham wasn’t printed on grain. My mom had to make the dress, and Was Not Impressed. It was pretty dreadful.

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  17. I started making lined-reversible medieval (washable) costumes for wearing to tourneys after moving to California. When I lived further north, cool airy dresses to wear in the summer, with sun protection, were not as important. Sheets are really too light weight for my taste singly, but I got really hooked on the lined reversible concept. And sheets are a great relatively inexpensive source of good colors. There should be enough in a sheet to make a wrap dress.

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