Ugly Sweater Family, Part 1
Sometimes inspiration doesn’t pussyfoot around, it just comes straight at you. That’s what happened with this project. I got a phone call from Lory, a family friend, a while back talking about a store his friends had opened that specialized in recycled goods, that he was working on paintings for it, and that he thought it would be a neat idea for me to use recycled materials for some of the goofy amigurumi stuffed animals I make. Doesn’t take much more than that to get the wheels turning in my head. I’ve wanted to take apart a sweater for a while anyway, ever since I saw instructions for it and realized just how easy it is. So I found one at a thrift store.
To make a sweater takes a lot of yarn. When you take it apart again, you wind up with close to the same amount, maybe a little less if you account for chopping off ends and any parts that get tangled. A first timer like me is bound to accidentally cut the wrong thread here and there, meaning that for a section of the sweater you only pull out short strands instead of one big long piece suitable for re-use. I kept all of the little bits and pieces though, they’re being chopped up into fluff and used to supplement the stuffing. I like to think of it as transplanting a little bit of the guts of their former incarnation into each one.
To make an amigurumi generally does not take all that much yarn. I was going to get a lot of stuffed animals out of this one sweater. Enough to make a whole family! Thus, the ugly sweater family is begun.
Here are the matriarch and patriarch of my first ugly sweater family. This particular sweater was made with two different kinds of yarn, one green and one fading rainbow vomit colors, alternated in stripes. It’s admittedly not the ugliest sweater I’ve ever seen, but there’s a certain something to it that made me say “yeah, this thing is ripe for a new life”. Somehow I didn’t connect the two different colors with the fact that they were two different yarns when I looked it over in the thrift store (I didn’t figure it out until I unraveled to the first color change in the sleeve), which probably reveals my relative newbie status at this. I think of it as great luck – the first family is distinctly interspecies (interracial?)!
Mom and dad look pretty different, how will their traits combine in their children? Only time will tell. Stay tuned to see how this goofy family grows. I plan to keep going until I run out of yarn from the sweater. Something tells me this is a fertile couple.