Believe it or not, friends, I used to own the same identical sofa pictured above, picked up at a thrift store nearly 15 years ago for a song.
It was already beaten up when I got it and became much, much more so when we got dogs. Here's Michael lounging on it a decade ago. Look at those lustrous curls!
Back then, before I ever dreamed of sewing celebrity, my apartment was done up in true mid-century swinging bachelor pad style. I do sometimes miss my aubergine walls...
Anyway, being the thrifty person I am, when the sofa was finally too beat up even to sell on Craigslist and was about to go to sofa heaven, I stripped most of the leather off the cushions, and I've had the scraps in my fabric stash ever since. This was a high-end sofa in its day and the leather is soft and supple. I've been meaning to make something with it and now I know what: a leather newsboy cap!
Ever the prescient sewer -- I even kept the covered buttons!
I've practice-stitched on pieces of this leather many, many times and it has never given my machine problems. Can I actually make a wearable garment? We'll see!
1) Have you ever turned old furniture into new fashion accessories?
2) Would you consider a project like this to be upcycling (since the sofa was headed for the landfill), recycling (since I'm not working with actual garbage), or the catch-all, re-purposing? I want to get my terms right.
3) Don't you think Michael should grow his hair out again?
I'm a native New Yorker and self-taught sewing fanatic! I started sewing in 2009 and today make all my own clothes using mostly vintage patterns and vintage sewing machines. Welcome to the warm and whimsical world of Male Pattern Boldness, where the conversation is sewing, style, fashion, fabric, and more!