Sunday, May 12, 2013

Fulfilling a Childhood Fantasy

When I was just a wee one, I attended a Catholic school that had a uniform policy.

The girls wore plaid jumpers or skirts (depending on grade); gray, white, or navy blue socks; a white shirt (polo or blouse), and a blue school sweater (cardigan or pullover). The boys wore navy blue corduroy pants, white shirts, and the blue pullover sweaters. After 8 years of staring at the same uniforms, I was pretty darned tired of wearing plaid.... to say the least.

As an adult with many years of perspective, I appreciate the idea of school uniforms. It makes getting dressed a snap; there's no "what do I want to wear today" issues each day. You have one thing ... put it on, eat breakfast, hit the road.

Annika's school also has uniforms and an annual auction, which was this past Friday. One of the silent auction baskets had an eco-friendly theme. I decided if I could get my hands on a uniform, I could turn it into a reusable bag. One of the gals on the auction committee with me offered up one of the uniforms her daughter had outgrown. Perfect! Recycling to recycle.

As I prepared to take the jumper apart to create a bag, I couldn't help but hear a little voice in the back of my head. That voice was my childhood self giggling with glee. Taking a rotary cutter to a school uniform was the fulfillment of so many uniform-related childhood fantasies!! It didn't even matter that the uniform wasn't mine! 

I started off by removing the jumper top and then opening up the side seam to have a nice rectangle of fabric. I quickly realized that I wanted to retain the pleats to keep the feel of a uniform, so I sewed along some of the horizontal lines.

I also cut off two of the pleats to create the handles for the bag... everything must match, you know!

I ran the bag through my serger to finish off the edges and then through my sewing machine to create the actual bag. After attaching the handles and turning down the top edge, I was done.

My inner schoolgirl and I worked very nicely together and are both quite happy with the final results!

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