It’s a disease, plain and simple. The first contagion likely occurred when I shrunk a cherished cardigan and it came out looking like an American Girl Doll nightmare. All tightened and minature and out of proportion – I am sure my neighbors heard the very loud, very colorful frustration. What I had unwittingly performed as I grieved for my garment, was the magic of felting.
Felting occurs when 100% wool is washed and agitated. It shrinks, thickens, and like Clark Kent in the phone booth, comes out in a super strong albeit smaller rendition of its original self. You can actually CUT the wool after felting, and be left with a clean, unfraying edge.
Add in the propensity to never throw anything away that might have a use - a syndrome cheerfully blamed on my ever so frugal Armenian ancestors, and there you have it.. the onset of the sweater quilt disease. Imagine the possibilities - an almost infinite supply of "passed on" wool garments, yearning to be chosen for reincarnation.
M. Night Shyamalan - step to the side please!
Now I'm a great one for ideas - but since I am always overtasking myself, I am woefully horrid on execution. Enter one of my very talented pals - Patricia - who is exceedingly clever in all things arts and crafts, (not to mention a top notch pediatric nurse). Progress to our pie in the sky notion of sweater-raiding every thrift store in Boston - gleefully (and admittedly a bit maniacally) shrinking our captured sweater zombies into oblivion, then slicing and dicing them with gusto into fun little squares that can be sewn together to make a wonderful quilt blanket like Patricia's creation above. And, really, it's not hard to do! (crossmyhearthopetodieifItellalie)
I'm committed to at least making a pashmina size felted sweater scarf this fall, (maybe in cashmere..mmm so soft and warm..) so stay tuned..AND if you want to try one too - Let us Know! We'd love to start an online felting bee to help each other out.