Sewing bee - recycling fabric

Hello sewers. I've started a sewing bee involving recycling old fabric. You can recycle unused old fabric from your stash, an old dress, sheets, towels, coats or whatever you have enough of to make something you'll use.  I'm making pillow cases from an old white cotton bed skirt.  Would you like to join in? There are no fees and no pressure; we'll all have a bit of fun and learn more about sewing and recycling. I'm hoping new sewers join in as well as our intermediates and experienced sewers. Everyone is welcome.  You can join either here or on Instagram - #downtoearthsewingbee.

This is the old bed skirt I'm using to make pillow cases.  What will you use?

The item should be finished by Thursday 21 November (or close to it) and when you finish, I'd like you to take a photo and send it to me so I can add it to my Instagram sewing bee gallery.  I'm always interested in what other people sew so I'm looking forward to seeing what you create.  Start now, let me know what you're sewing and when you finish send a photo of your finished project to downtoearthsewingbee@gmail.com so it can be added to the photo gallery.

20 comments

  1. This is a great idea! This past summer I "recycled" a duvet cover into covers for our back porch benches, back and seat cushion covers for two porch rocking chairs and a pillow cover. I bought the duvet cover for $5 at a thrift store so it was certainly worth the money spent even though I ended up not using it for its true purpose! I'll be watching to see what your readers do with this challenge.

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  2. This sounds wonderful. Will see what I come up with.

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  3. I will have to have a look in my fabric stash, I love doing this kind of project. I am in need of some new pillow cases so hopefully there will be something useful there. I buy old brushed cotton sheets from charity shops and repurpose them into small cloths which we use instead of toilet paper.

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  4. I just started a scrappy little quilt last night but I have used recycled materials for a lot of things. I've used old pajamas for knitting and crocheting project bags, old sweatshirts and old baby blankets for batting in various projects, t-shirts for t-shirt yarn and I always save the buttons and zippers. I can look at IG but I can't post because I don't have a cell phone. I do have a tablet with a camera so I am looking into that but meanwhile I do have a blog and here is the link to my scrappy quilt start https://farmgirlsam.blogspot.com/2019/11/nablopomo-day-8.html
    I actually sewed the first row after I posted last night which will get posted today sometime. I have yet to take apart old knitted items from wool but I plan to try that too.

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  5. My bedroom window curtains are made from an old bed skirt like this, they have been up for years.

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  6. I recycled some curtains that were very good quality but didn't fit my windows after having an extension built on the house! I now have cushion covers, and seat pads for my dining room chairs! They look great!

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  7. Love the idea. I'm making a winter margin from two matching fleece throws.

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    1. I don't know what a winter margin is. Can you explain it please?

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  8. What a lovely idea. I need to do the opposite though ... I'd like a new bed skirt so I may have to have a poke through my old pillowcases (and sheets) and make one of those.

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  9. I am so busy this time of year that it would be a stretch to get anything done but I wanted to say that my great aunt made the most wonderful thick braided wool rugs from wool coats that she purchased that thrift shops. I am blessed to have four of them and will treasure them since she passed away at age 95 last week.

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    1. Family treasures, how wonderful. I'm sorry to hear about your great aunt. I'm sure you have many happy memories of her.

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  10. Rhonda, this is a wonderful idea! I can't join because I will be away and not able to complete in time, but I WILL recreate old sheets into pillow cases. We use many pillow cases for us and some for our old cat, so this will work very well. Many thanks!
    Peace and joy, Dianna

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  11. OH I was so glad to find you on my feed, as before I went away I know you were talking about no longer blogging. I made two quilts for my grandchildren out of fabrics that had been passed down through the generations. I really enjoyed sewing with those old fabrics, and imagining my ancestors sewing garments and samplers. So good to be back in the swing of things again,as I try to re-assess my life after redundancy. I am always using up bit of fabric or re-purposing old clothes. I am not sure if I can join in this time but will be following along.

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    1. I had a few months off and came back and I'm glad to be here. I sorry to hear about the redundancy but I think you have the skills to ride it out. Good luck.

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  12. Rhonda, thinking of you, from Perth, WA and hoping you and yours are safe in these horrific fires. I have followed you off and on for years and love the gently wisdom so graciously shared.
    Earlier this year I did a workshop on crocheting rag rugs from old sheets, using big hooks specially made by the tutors husband. I actually bought a duvet cover from Good Sammies last night to keep going on the one I started, so this post encourages me to keep going.

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    1. We're fine at the moment, Judy. Thanks for your concern. I love rag rugs. Keep going, it will be a family treasure when you finish. Send me a photo when you finish and I'll put it up on the sewing bee gallery. It might be an inspiration for others as well.

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  13. Hi Rhonda, this sounds like a great idea!! I have a single bed sheet set that I picked up from the op shop some time ago. I've been meaning to make pajama pants out of them, plus pillow cases and whatever else I can get out of it. Would love to join in to do this. Thanks Rhonda. Regards Marie Harding

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    1. Don't forget to send one photo of what you make. Happy sewing Marie.

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  14. It's amazing what a little push in the right direction can do (thank-you Rhonda!).

    I've wanted to sew a new bed skirt for ages but never quite got around to it. Anyway I have just finished it and it looks exactly as I wanted it to look ... I used a good quality, white cotton sheet for the frilled bit that shows (about $4 from an op shop a few years ago) and used the old existing bed skirt for the large flat part. I made it slightly longer than they usually are ... I'm very pleased with it and will send a photo in the next few days.

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    1. I look forward to seeing what you make, Maggie.

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