Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Outlier

I've often felt like someone who travels through life as an outlier. I find myself frequently being squeezed by the flat end of the bell curve, and there's no predicting which end of the curve it's going to be. Sometimes I find I have developed an interest in something long before it becomes trendy. Knitting would be a good example of this. Other times I find that by the time I decide to try something it's a quaint relic from the past. This weekend's sewing adventure falls into the latter category.

On Friday I saw a post by Meredith at the Mereknits blog about some jeans she remade into a denim skirt. This intrigued me. After all, who doesn't have an old pair of jeans in their closet? I'm guessing almost everyone. And who doesn't think a jean skirt would be the perfect addition to their wardrobe? Okay, well, maybe almost nobody. But that didn't stop me from thinking these would be a brilliant thing to make and then wear.

So Saturday afternoon, instead of working on the quilt I had just cut out several hundred squares for, I grabbed an old pair of jeans, looked at several tutorials online (I mostly used this one), and started ripping and cutting.




Ripping isn't my favourite thing to do, but the good news is because I have had to do so much of it on previous projects I'm actually not bad at it.




At this stage they sort of resembled the grown-up version of the pants I've seen on toddlers in China.




The cut off legs provide the material for the front and back inserts. Pinning them in was fairly straightforward, but sewing them was a bit of a pain.




It wasn't until after I finished that I found out turning your jeans into a skirt was a thing back in the 70s. So there you have it, my fashion blast from the past. And yes, I've worn it and it was incredibly comfortable, which trumps trendy any day.




I also made pajama bottoms last week. I went to the fabric store for thread, but couldn't walk out without these knitting sheep!




This picture has nothing to do with anything I wrote about in this post. I'm offering it up to soothe your eyes after looking at multiple pictures of a pair of mutilated old jeans.

I'm curious. Does anyone else feel like a Life Outlier? Do you ever feel like you are either way behind or way ahead of everyone around you? Or possibly not even on the same planet?

64 comments:

  1. The photo has soothed me. You did a great job on the skirt. Have some wonderful pics of seventies style make overs from jeans into a skirt, will have to post them. So much from the seventies is coming round again, and any old crafting books from then are totally in vogue.
    Christy

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's funny how things seem to cycle through again and again in the fashion industry. I hope bell bottoms never make another appearance though. :-)

      Delete
  2. That is a fantastic picture of the mountains and water ,it must have been even better enjoying that view for real! I can't believe your denim skirt was made out of jeans it looks so good. Although I have lots of jeans in the wardrobe,I also have a denim skirt too, so it is just as well that I won't been attempting this. I know mine would turn into a disaster! Sarah x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I was out for one of my regular walks, and was talking to a friend on my mobile when I noticed the clouds and the way they were reflecting on the water. I got off the phone right away so I could take the picture. It only looked that way for a few minutes, so I was so happy I could capture it. I'm glad to hear you also have a denim skirt in your wardrobe, Sarah! :-)

      Delete
  3. Gosh, how clever you are. That skirt will be really useful in summer. A friend of mine makes denim shoulder bags from old jeans and they look great. I'm not sure I'm an outlier of any kind, though I did take up knitting again long before the media hype that accompanied the public rediscovery of knitting around the turn of the Millennium. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm not clever at all, Perpetua. I'm what Elizabeth Zimmermann called a "blind follower." I always marvel at the people who are able to come up with original ideas. :-)

      Delete
    2. Au contraire, Kristie. You are very clever with your words! It is rare, indeed, for someone to lead the way in all areas of life. I say, better to be gifted in a few areas than a jack of all trades and mediocre. Your photo alone shows you have the ability to be in the right place at the right time even if that "time" doesn't go with the flow. :-)

      Delete
    3. What a kind thing to say, Cathy! Thank you for your encouraging words. :-)

      Delete
  4. You certainly made a great job of the skirt. I did cut the legs off some jeans to make some shorts once. Love the knitting sheep I wouldn't have been able to walk past that fabric either.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks! I was quite pleased with it, although my husband commented that it was a bit short. I pointed out I would be wearing it with leggings. As for the sheep fabric, let's just say it wasn't on my list of things to buy before I entered the store, but went straight to the top of the list as soon as I saw it. :-)

      Delete
  5. I am definitely an outlier in my daily life but less so in blog land I think. Love your skirt! I saw Meredith post also and have been eying my old jeans ever since. The last image is indeed soothing (but I also like the mutilated jeans pictures). Happy sewing! x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, I agree Christina about not feeling like so much of an outlier in blog land. I think it's because we have been able to meet people who have similar interests and ideas. If I did this skirt in three hours you could probably do it in about 30 minutes. I admire your sewing skills, especially that amazing duffle coat you just finished. :-)

      Delete
  6. I almost always feel like I am swimming upstream.
    I love the skirt! Well done, you. Outlier or not, you are fabulous!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, that's it - swimming upstream! Thanks for the compliment on my skirt. :-)

      Delete
  7. Yes, totally, always! Swimming against the tide is exhausting but so is trying to be someone or something you are not. Love the photo by the way and the skirt.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You are so right. Trying to be someone other than who we are geared to be is exhausting. I gave that up many years ago. Thanks for the kind words about the photo and the skirt!

      Delete
  8. Sometimes I feel like I am definitely not of this planet. You are a talented lady, and the picture is quite beautiful.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Bonnie! I think there are a fair number of us who feel like we are sometimes on a different planet. That's the great thing about blogging. It gives us a chance to meet each other. :-)

      Delete
  9. Yes, I am very much an outlier. Always have been and I'm finally learning to embrace it. Your skirt is really nice. I bet it looks very cute on you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm glad you are learning to embrace being an outlier, Jennifer. It's much easier going through life once you are able to do so. It's a lesson I had to learn, and now I'm actually very happy being who I am, and doing what I do. Some day I'll have to blog about my experience living in a sorority when I was at university. Not a place to inhabit if you are an outlier! :-)

      Delete
  10. I'm always at the tail-end, but that's ok, I take my time about doing things. Love the sheep knitting!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The tail-end is a fine place to be, Janet. That way you can see what is worth pursuing and what isn't. As for the knitting sheep fabric, I just wish I could have thought of something more creative than pyjamas to make with it. :-)

      Delete
  11. The pajama bottoms must have required a lot of sewing. Just the drawstring seems like a lot of sewing. They look great and the skirt does too. Usually, I'm only aware of being ahead or behind the curve on a trend when someone points it out to me. And then I forget about it pretty quickly. I gotta be me. :)
    I am more likely to feel like an outlier in terms of things I notice (or don't) or things I wonder about (or don't).

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Actually the pajama bottoms were super easy, Rick. They are one of the easiest sewing projects ever. I am an outlier in the ways you are as well. Sometimes it gets me in a bit of trouble. Ha! :-)

      Delete
    2. I forgot to ask if you have managed to shovel away all that snow you got over the weekend??

      Delete
    3. I did dig out. But I got the kids (I use that term loosely) to clean off the cars. Maggie didn't enjoy the snow while it was falling, but once it stopped she had a lot of fun making trails through the back yard and scaling the peaks. I could have gone to work yesterday, but my office was closed. So today is my first day back.

      Delete
    4. I suspected that might be the case--the outlier issue (and getting in trouble). :) But I'm surprised about the pajama pants. They look like a lot of work.

      Delete
  12. As everyone frequently reminds me, I'm stuck back in the 1970s! But that's quite alright, I'm rather comfortable here.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There's nothing wrong with the 70s, Karen. :-)

      Delete
  13. Well, I have never heard of an outlier, but now that you mention it, I think most of my family are outliers, self included! That knitting sheep fabric was made for you! One of those things which once seen, must be collected on sight. Lovely PJs. I have never attempted to convert jeans, and you have done it brilliantly, Kristie. Your sewing is so neat and accurate, and I bet it looks great on you. The picture of the lake was an inspiration - how gorgeous it is.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for your nice words about my sewing, Patricia. You are such an amazing seamstress, and seeing all the things you have sewn has been an inspiration to me. That's interesting that you think most of your family are outliers. It must make for some interesting family gatherings! :-)

      Delete
  14. Hey Kristie,
    Oh that last photograph. You live in a beautiful part of the world, my friend, and you have captured it perfectly here. I'm not sure I am an outlier. I'm neither on trend or behind. Or even in front. I think you are cool just the way you are. I am so tempted to have a go at pj making; they are my favourite items of clothing ;0
    Leanne xx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I was actually talking on my mobile with a friend when I glanced over at the lake and saw that scene. I hung up and hurried down to get the picture, and minutes later the light and clouds changed and that moment was gone. I was very glad I got the picture in time. You are kind to say I'm cool just the way I am, but that's the thing. I'm not really, and I have never tried to be. I'm just me, and sometimes (a lot of the time) that includes being a bit quirky. And I would encourage you to try pajama bottoms. They are a great starter project. :-)

      Delete
  15. I've become more 'outlier-isn' as I've got older. Now in middle-age, I don't care about trends, etc, and like to plough my own furrow. That confidence definitely comes with age. We all have our quirks and it's lovely 'meeting' all the fantastic bloggers who are their own people. Fabulous sewing projects, Kristie. I know I said it on IG but I'll say it again – that last photo is fantastic :-) Sam x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love that expression Sam - "plough my own furrow." I'm going to try and remember it, as it's the perfect description of my life. I think you are right about the confidence to scoff at trends and what is popular coming with age. Thanks for your kind words about the sewing projects and my lake picture! :-)

      Delete
  16. Interesting thoughts Kristie.....I think I have always been on the outlier one way or another :). Your denim skirt project is great! Just last summer I decided a long midi denim skirt was required......but couldn't decide on what jeans to cut up! So my new thread and a piece of denim fabric has been in a bag.....waiting for inspiration. This might just kick start me, because I'd love a long denim skirt for next summer :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. When I was Googling and searching Pinterest for inspiration there were several tutorials that came up for making long denim skirts, Anne. I'm glad I was able to get you thinking again about your idea to make one. I'll be watching your blog for a post about it!

      Delete
  17. What a fab post, I now want to try it out!.thanks for sharingx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Michelle! I'm glad I could inspire you to try the jean skirt. :-)

      Delete
  18. I rarely knit anymore but now need those knitting sheep.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ha! Yes, they are irresistible, even if you don't knit very much. :-)

      Delete
  19. Pah! Who cares about trendy! I think that your skirt is fabulous!!! I have tried being fashionable, it is too exhausting. I am much more satisfied being me and not being trendy! Enjoy ALL of your sewing and knitting! xx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Amy! Yes, being fashionable would be exhausting. Maybe that's part of the reason I've never attempted it. I prefer comfort and practicality to style. :-)

      Delete
  20. I don't know, do jeans, or jean skirts, or jean jackets ever really go out of style?! I think you would look quite trendy with this skirt wearing a pair of leggings and boots with the knitted cuffs rolled down over the tops of the boots ... right?! My kids tend to point out my dated fashions, although they have been pointing them out less often ... probably think I'm a lost cause :D

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You're probably right about them never going out of style. It would certainly seem that's the case after reading all the comments and seeing how many other people have jeans skirts in their wardrobes! I like your idea of wearing them with boots with knitted cuffs. :-)

      Delete
  21. Three cheers for the denim skirt!
    Yes yes on the outlier feeling. I like to knit, to use fountain pens, to write letters and postcards, to listen to records … maybe I am a Luddite?
    But I am fine with zippers, email and Ravelry!
    And wow that is an amazing photo indeed.
    LisaRR

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's always nice to know other outliers, Lisa! I laughed when you said you're fine with zippers. I'm quite sure you meant that to mean in a non-Amish, non-luddite way. But I'm not fine with zippers. Only it's in a knitterly way. I try to avoid at all costs knitting or sewing anything that involves putting in a zipper. :-)

      Delete
  22. that's a gorgeous photo and the skirt looks wonderful! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks so much, Deb! The skirt also feels wonderful when I wear it. It's every bit as comfy as it was in its previous life as a pair of jeans. :-)

      Delete
  23. I'm an outlier, I am marching to the beat of my internal drum and it doesn't match anyone else's!! love your skirt, clever you and I love your last photo to give us pause.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Perhaps we should start up an outliers group over on Ravelry, Karen. Judging by the comments on this post there seem to be a fair number of us. :-)

      Delete
  24. Love the skirt! the fabric, too. Where did you buy the fabric? Yes, I, too, am an outlier & always have been. I've never been a joiner nor followed the crowd. My knitting group of friends are the closest I've had to a "club", but that's okay with me. I'm a cross-over from Ravelry (kathymary) & found your blog from there.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Welcome to my blog, Kathy! And yes, I recognize you from Ravelry. I got the fabric at our local quilting shop. They also have an online store (I think they are the biggest online quilting store in Canada). It's called Hamel's.

      Delete
    2. Thanks, I'll go see online. That fabric is too cute to pass up.

      Delete
  25. I am never, ever on trend. I actually have no idea what is in, I don't Facebook, Tweet or Instagram. I just want to knit or crochet something I like. I am so, so excited you made the skirt. It looks fantastic. I have not worn mine yet as it has cooled off to much, and I don't have tights or leggings to war under it.
    Thanks for the shout out!
    Meredith

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Like you, Meredith, I'm never on trend either. And if I do happen to be in some way it's just an accident. Thank you so much for showing your skirt and providing the links on your blog. I knew I had to make one as soon as I saw yours. Maybe you should go buy one pair of leggings (maybe capri length since you live in Florida), and then you could wear your skirt. I've worn mine once already and it's incredibly comfortable!

      Delete
  26. Not an outlier exactly, but I do get annoyed when something I've always done becomes fashionable and suddenly I'm commonplace instead of a bit different.

    I can't believe it's so long since I paid you a visit here Kristie, and I feel sure I owe you a message elsewhere ... I've just been so busy! It's good to catch up x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, I share your sentiments about feeling annoyed when something we do suddenly becomes trendy. I could almost feel that way about knitting, but so many wonderful things have become available because of its popularity that I'm willing to overcome my annoyance in that instance. :-)

      I was thinking of you yesterday, wondering how you are doing. We'll have to schedule in a chat again sometime soon!

      Delete
  27. I did like that skirt...but had had no idea that it was a 70s thing!
    I was dyeing, spinning and weaving from when we were taught how to do so at school...long before it became trendy...these days I don't have the patience for the maths in weaving...or the eyesight for it either...though I am tempted to start spinning again as I pluck the wool from the sheep...Monty permitting.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh Helen, yes, with Monty hanging about you really should get back into spinning. It's very therapeutic, and it seems a shame to have all that wonderful fibre go to waste. As for the skirt, I had no clue it was a 70s thing either until after I had finished it and a couple of friends told me they used to make them "way back in the 70s." :-)

      Delete
  28. I'm definitely in your last category at the present. I have all the wonderful ideas whirling in front of me but because I'm in a different orbit I can't grab hold of one and get on with it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's frustrating to have lots of ideas and not be able to grab hold of one, but I think that comes along with being creative. I hope you are able to grab hold of one of your ideas soon, Jacqueline!

      Delete
  29. I think many bloggers feel that way, it's one of the reasons we turn to blogging - searching for a community, somewhere, of like minds.
    I've thought about doing a jean skirt many times, but the thought of sewing denim makes me twitchy, so have not gotten any further :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I agree about the blogging community, Kate. It's one of the reasons I keep at it. As for the jean skirt, I would encourage you to give it a go. It's much less intimidating than trying to sew the skirt from scratch. The only seams are the front and back insets, then the hem. It was a very forgiving project too. No measuring or trying to get things exact was required. I'm in the unskilled, beginner category of sewing, so if I can do it basically anybody can!

      Delete