Sunday, January 10, 2016

A New life for an Old Treasure

Here is a post for all my crafty friends out there, I know there are more than a few:)

Farm Buddy's mother passed away a few yeas ago and, as they do, some of her treasures have come to her daughter.  One of them was a heavily pleated, handmade, patchwork skirt that FB's mom made in 1972.  Like most quilts, it was an accumulation of many different scrapes and memories, including several of her embroidery projects. 

This ankle-length, hand-sewn, pleated skirt was beautiful, but also not something that FB would ever wear - not exactly appropriate farm attire.  It is the kind of heirloom that has a lot of value, but little use.  Rather than put it away in a closet, FB enlisted the help of NobleWoman (also known as Riding Buddy's mom, who is also a very talented seamstress) to give this old treasure a new purpose and a new life.

NobleWoman unfolded all those pleats, ironed it all flat and devised a way to stabilized the fragile fabric.  She used some mysterious stuff called WonderUnder (that name still makes me shake my head at the mental image that popped into my mind the first time NW tried to explain all this to me), to glue the skirt onto some new backing material.

The end result is the table cloth that we served Christmas dinner on. 

I should have gotten more pictures.  Those flowers and the scene in the center were all hand embroidered. 

In addition to creating the framework and the backing, NobleWoman added a few finishing touches here and there as well....

....along with a signature, because artwork should always be signed.


  1. Great heirloom. Wonderful re-purposing. Wish I was that clever/thoughtful. Mother's great creations are in boxes.

  2. hard to imagine what it looked like as a skirt - it's a perfect table cloth - and all that embroidery!!
    Nicely done, Anne and Noble Woman!

  3. That is wonderful and what a beautiful table it is!

  4. How cool! You don't happen to have a picture when it was still a skirt, do you?

    1. Offhand, I don't know that I have a photo of my mom wearing that skirt, but I clearly remember her wearing it. My mom was very tall and slim, and she would wear that long skirt or a blue-jean skirt with a crisp very-white button-down shirt.

  5. Well done, Helen! What a beautiful treasure (both Helen and the tablecloth)!

  6. I have a 'gazillion' yr old blanket that I should redo. The original had an old table cloth for backing when I was in college.
    Love finding new ways to make old things shine again.

  7. It is a piece of art! Wow! It's beautiful!

  8. Genius idea! Beautifully done! No surprise, Miss Helen, no surprise!

  9. I would love to see more close up pictures of the panels

  10. I would love to see more close up pictures

  11. Absolutely beautiful - I just love it!

  12. Value, beauty, and usefulness! Well done Noblewoman!