“I used to be a ballet dancer” to quote Billy Elliot’s grandmother. I studied ballet for twenty-ish years. The result, among many good character qualities and a hatred of tights, is a large pile of shirts.
Anyone who has been part of a team or club for a significant amount of time can relate to my current problem that needs solving. I didn’t want to get rid of them. Tearing them up for dust cloths was very much out of the question. They have just been taking up space.
My solution? Make a blanket.
Yes, I know this will still take up space but will have the added benefit of being useful. Yes, I know shirts are useful but only if I were still ballerina size. As a blanket, the shirts will be useful for many years and even have the potential of being an heirloom. That is if anyone is interested in the fact that “I used to be a ballet dancer” in decades to come.
I started by searching out all the shirts. Once I felt confident that I had assembled the whole collection, I laid them out on the floor. Wow that’s a lot of shirts.
I took some measurements. The largest design would allow for a 14” x 14” square. I also confirmed that I could cut that size out of the smallest shirt. I was five-and-a-half when I started dancing. Some of these shirts are small.
I want to add some detail to the blanket. I’m going to do this with strips of black flannel fabric in between the squares. This will frame them as well as separate the colors that might otherwise clash a bit.
After quite a bit of shopping by foot and shopping online I found a plaid flannel fabric that incorporates the black and colors from the various shirts. I will use this for the back.
Now came the scheme. Hours were spent laying them out in the actual pattern. HOURS. With all the pieces decided I got to work cutting the shirts into squares. Even after subjecting her to the HOURS of layout planning, my mom volunteered to cut out the black strips.
Next will be assembling all the pieces. Then attaching the front to the back sandwiching the fluff. Stay tuned….
Oh yeah, I did end up with a pile of dust cloths after all.